Thursday, July 4, 2013

Singapore Day 13: Creative classroom

A perfectly captured moment: check
out more marvelous painting
s by
the artist: Prabhakara Jimmy Quek
You wouldn't think that a Research Methods class would be a creative endeavor. But the seven students from Singapore and Malaysia have wonderful stories. Today they presented topics that interest them, headed toward a finished paper. Hopefully each will have most of the research done and the paper written by next weekend.

Singapore demands a different kind of busy of its citizens. It's on the run 24-7. Our students come to class 8:30am-1:30pm (8-1:30 next week). Afterwards, they go to ministry events, work, or other commitments. Between leaving class and returning (I'm not sure when), they do their homework and prep for classes.

I'm so grateful for the TESOL classes with Dr. Kobashigawa, taken just before we left Seattle. I've tried to carry over the relaxed intensity of her classroom to our Singapore experience. We have to accomplish a lot, but we take a half-hour breakfast break at 10 and have other breaks between work sessions. After we finish, there's cleanup and an evening ahead.

W, Kirsten, Jeremy, and Rebekah are downtown by the time I finish teaching. The guys walk around in SimLim (tech mall), the girls look for clothes, and eat an early supper in town.

Meanwhile, I head back to the flat and finish the porridge (rice mush with chicken and egg in it) left over from brunch. It tasted fantastic in the morning and still tickles my taste buds this afternoon, though it looks plain and kind of slimy.

J and R arrived during the night. They had an empty seat between them on their flights, a true luxury. However, due to turbulence, no one could use the toilets between Tokyo and Singapore. Needless to say, there were long lines for the restrooms in the airport. W went to the airport to fetch them, but it took them a while to get through the bathroom lines and back to the flat.

I saw the kids for a quick hello and goodbye before heading for class this morning. It's nice to have them here. We miss Timothy and Melissa but it's their turn to travel with us next time, perhaps to Bandung. (Jono, we miss you too. He was here last time we taught in S'pore.)

Kirsten's acupuncture session and herbal meds seemed to help with her joint pain yesterday, but she's pretty sore today. W and the kids come home exhausted. Kirsten's joint are aching, Rebekah's feeling the heat. Jeremy's knee hurts and W's throat is raw. (Good thing he's not teaching this week. He's tour guide and host, between projects.)

I have my grading done by the time everyone gets back. K heads for a nap, W hops online, and the other two relax and set up their phones. I'm ready for morning class, then it's onward ho to the weekend.

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