With the events in the South hanging over everyone the past few days, it is difficult to write about the calm weekend we’ve been having on the lake. Out of respect for the gravity of what’s happening in Osh and Jalal-Abad, I will keep this short. If you would like to read more on what has been happening, please….please…check out the new link I’ve posted. KG24 is a Kyrgyz news station that has an English version of their site.
On the lake: Last week three other TEFL volunteers and I completed a week-long teacher training for local teachers. There were 11 quite active teachers who came from secondary schools and the university. The sessions focused on using a new TEFL curriculum that some schools have received. Within the framework of using these new books, we taught sessions on PPP (Presentation Practice Production) lesson planning, teaching all 4 skills of language learning (speaking, listening, reading, and writing), PDP (pre, during, and post) skill activities, as well as a session on instruction giving. We had sessions for about 4 hours per day, so we were able to ask the teachers to analyze demo lessons, teach practical English, and ask teachers to give micro-lessons. We finished the week with the standard certificate-giving session. Overall, it was a great first run at training for me and a chance to begin networking with local teachers. There is interest in having a TOEFL Exam Preparation club for teachers and possibly students. I am looking forward to having work for the summer months.
Friday evening, volunteers from villages near the city came in to meet each other and kick off ‘Welcome Weekend.’ We had wine and cheese at a volunteer’s apartment and got to meet veteran volunteers. Saturday we took a bus to the beach followed by dinner and dancing at a local cafe. It was great to hear about the K18s new sites around the lake and get some advice from those who’ve been here a while. Everyone is pretty easy-going and fun to hang out with…we have been successfully welcomed here in Issyk-Kol.
New for this week…tomorrow I will meet my counterpart to work at the university for the first time and hopefully establish a PO box. I need my counterpart’s language skills to attempt this, so please give me a few more days grace on that since I am not sure of her schedule ;)
Again please check the news links and stay informed on what is happening over here. The people here deserve our concern and prayers.