Friday, June 15, 2007

Teaching, Taxis, and W.

I was finally getting things sorted out with my curriculum and textbooks and was getting started on lesson plans... When I find out that they decided to have me teach using a different textbook. Hmm... Still learning to roll with the punches.

The new teachers at the school had to give practice lessons yesterday to the other teachers. I was a little bit nervous about that, not only because I had just changed the focus of my lesson after getting the new book, but mostly because it's just very awkward presenting a lesson geared toward grade 1 students to a bunch of college grads. But it was good to hear their tips and have them point out things that need working on.

Today is Friday.

Class starts on Monday.

Monday and Tuesday we only have half days, so they won't be too terribly crazy. It will be just enough to get settled in the classroom and get to know my students. Wednesday is when our normal schedule will begin.

I had my first taxi adventure today. We ride in taxis all the time here (typical fare to get across town is between 35-80 bhat which is under three US dollars), but usually it has been without any problem. Today, after driving a minute or so, we realized that our driver didn't know what we were talking about when we gave him directions. He did the whole smile and nod thing, but couldn't understand what we were saying. It took quite a while to sort that out. But he played the English radio station for us which was nice of him, and he told us that "George W. Boul" was good.

Our taxi driver's broken comments about Bush really got me thinking. What would happen if I were not in support of my president? If I were to go to another country and speak poorly about the leader of my country, what kind of picture of America would that be painting? In Thailand they have a HUGE amount of respect for their leader, the King, so what a sad contrast it would be to see a country whose people are not in support of the leader that they themselves even have chosen. It breaks my heart to know that there are people out there, traipsing the globe, and showing a lack of respect for their home country's leader and thus giving a poor representation of America.


Derek Knight said...

I thought your comments on George W. "Boul" were interesting. =)
It is good to have a certain amount of loyalty and respect towards our elected officials and authority. I fear you are right and that many Americans are more into complaining than patriotism and appreciating our country.

However, it is important that we remain objective about our leaders - especially since they are elected - and that we support the good and oppose the bad things that they do. Speaking generally (not necessarily about “W”), a loyal citizen supporting a corrupt leader is a worse representation than a citizen who loves his country but opposes the current leader.

Anyways, that’s so awesome that they have a King! I’ve wondered what that would be like. I guess you’ll find out!

Good luck on Monday. I’m sure you will do great!

Derek Knight said...

So I thought some more about this and realized that being outside one's country carries different responsibilities, much like being outside your family. You can argue and bicker in your own house, but it's a different matter elsewhere, behind their backs. Unless we had a leader like Stalin or Castro, I think you're right and that it is really important to support him and our country.

Anyways, I think (and write) too much. Sorry. But, on a different subject, "traipsing" is got to be one of the coolest words! =)

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