Monday, October 28, 2013

KNUST and A Taste of Our School

I am now settled in to the place that we will all be staying for the duration of our trip. It is a guest house called KCCR, on the KNUST campus. This house/set of apartments is usually reserved for visiting professors, but we were lucky enough to be granted these accommodations. I plan on taking a video tour of our arrangements tomorrow if I have time.

As I mentioned, we are living on the KNUST campus. The campus is not as much of a campus as a small, busy city. We toured around the campus today on foot, and got to see many of the academic buildings, some fields, some markets we will be shopping at (many, many street vendors), and most importantly, our school. 

The KNUST basic school, which ranges from primary grades to junior high, is roughly a 30 minute walk from our living arrangement. From what I've gathered, and from the amount I have sweated today, I believe we will be taking cabs to school on most days, and walking back on the way home. This serves two purposes: the first is that by taking cabs or the tro tro (shuttle) in the morning, we will not be sweaty messes by the time we arrive at our classrooms and have to teach. The second is that while walking home, we can stop at local markets and purchase some fresh fruit, water, or eggs, among other things for the rest of the night, and the next day's breakfast. 

We only toured through the school today and will be actually meeting our cooperating teachers and our students in the morning. While we walked through the school, the most adorable, welcoming faces popped their heads out of the classroom to wave and smile. Even the junior high school kids managed to smile at the sight of us, despite their too cool, junior high ways (that is, if puberty works the same in all countries). This small taste of our school and the students we will be working with was such a tease to our entire group, which makes it obvious that we all share a passion for teaching.

I can't emphasize the sweating enough. Obviously this is Africa, but the magnitude of the heat cannot be imagined until it is experienced. I drank as much water as I thought my body could handle, but I sweated it all out almost instantly. I barely peed, and I got a consistent headache. This is something I have to work on. We either drink bottled water or purify our own water (I plan on demonstrating this as well), so it takes a lot of preparation to stay hydrated. For tomorrow morning and afternoon alone, I have already prepared a 1.5 Liter bottle and a 1 Liter bottle, and that is in addition to the water I plan on drinking in the morning. 

Tomorrow is our first day of classes, and naturally, I have some butterflies. I've heard that if you don't get nervous about something, it doesn't mean much to you. It is refreshing to be with 9 other candidates who feel the same way I do. 

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