Friday, June 17, 2011

Training Away The Days

My blog posts are becoming less and less frequent and must learn to correct that behavior. Here is my first chance to do some correcting.

I traveled to Kukurantumi on the 14th with my fellow Hohoe-ian Scott to get to the training hub-site. We made very good time after leaving somewhere after 1PM on Tuesday. After we walked into the gates of the hub site we saw the new arrivals for the first time. Thirty-six individuals enjoying some rest and dinner just before 6 o'clock. Within minutes of our arrival at the hub-site, the other three trainers arrived on the scene.

We got our orders to find places to stay within the community which has already been set up, and then we took to find some dinner. A nice evening walk and we were in a town close by finding a restaurant to eat at. Pretty simple and we were all in bed getting ready for an early morning.

Our first day of training was general information about what the Peace Corps Trainees (PCTs) would be doing for the rest of the week, who we were as the Peace Corps Trainers (PCTs), and what the Ghanaian Trainers were responsible for. These 36 are all going to be teachers so we started off with the appropriate topics that teachers need: what are the courses that to be taught, what will the environment be like at the schools, how to manage a chalkboard, and so on. There were lots of topics and it reminded me how quick it all passed by when I was trying to fill my head with it all last year. I must have missed quite a few points as the acronyms got tossed around, but sure enough we got to the good part - actually teaching.

Thursday was meant to learn the do's and don'ts of teaching for Ghanaian classes. I think the PCTs had a good time teaching lessons on how to perform a major triad chord, playing Tic-Tac-Toe Cubed, and other subjects. Even in the light-hearted forays into teaching there were still things to praise and critique, so that certain points can be polished and other points improved. With peer teaching in the books, we broached the subject that occurred today: micro-teaching.

The Trainees had to travel to real schools and demonstrate a short lesson on subject material more closely related to their disciplines in front of real students. Our group of ICT teachers traveled to two schools: Kibi and SDA. SDA is the Seventh Day Adventist College that our group trained at last year while Kibi (I don't know the full name of that school yet) is a new school about an hour away from where we are staying. Both campuses are nice and it seemed that all involved had a good time teaching a few students. I was even able to get up and do a demonstration lesson on digital images, so we all got in on the act. The PCTs looked as nervous as I felt when I was in their shoes.

We headed home from the colleges in the afternoon. As the tro-tro pulled into a gas station I heard the sound of a sheep ba-a-ahing from below. I thought we had hit one on the way in, but no, the sound was not emanating from outside the tro but from right behind my seat. Someone was ferrying their sheep in the back so we had an extra passenger. I think the Trainees appreciated that. Just one more thing that makes you smile in Ghana.

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