segunda-feira, 11 de janeiro de 2010

Holidays (and lots of school related ramblings...)

I had great plans about topics and themes we’d cover during the holidays with the kids. Well… My sister visited us for some three weeks over Christmas and New Year and my mum is still here with us until the end of January. So instead we’ve simply enjoyed holidays, which, I think hasn’t been that bad at all… We went to visit my sister-in-law in the countryside for a few days, went to a water park for a day and visited the state capital Porto Velho as my sister left. Above pictures from the water park and from Christmas.

December was spent pretty much at school for my part. I had seven students that didn’t pass English and had to take a week of extra classes and then another test. I actually quite enjoyed teaching only seven kids although they were from four different grades. We were able to play a few games and I was able to give lots of individual attention to each of them. It seems to have paid off: they all passed their test at the end of the week. In Brazilian schools teachers have an incredible amount of paperwork to do. There is a diary for each subject (in my case for each class) and you record what you taught and when as well as who was present that day. All grades go into the diary and at the end of the year you calculate the final notes and copy them to several different places inside that one diary. It’s not difficult but very time consuming and I must have spent hours completing all the diaries.

We did some homeschool work right in the beginning of December and just re-started today. I’m hoping to clarify some Finnish spelling to Luana as well as simple maths in Finnish. She’s simply out of practice with numbers in Finnish (although she does know them perfectly well) and she has only learned to write in Portuguese so now it’s time for Finnish. I’m also hoping we’d get back to the Outdoor Hour tasks especially now that the kids got a kids’ microscope for Christmas.

Luana will start English lessons at the same language school I teach in but that’ll be in the beginning of February. The kids have been asking for English lessons at home too so I might take a look into that as well.

The kids will change schools (from private to public) and will for the first time not be together in the same school. Luana will star first grade and Lucas still has two more years of pre-school left. The schools are right next to each other and they will take the same school bus there and back. I’m not worried about them being in different schools as they’re both very outgoing and definitely not shy. They’re both really excited about their new schools and new school uniforms. They will also get new backpacks this year and their old ones will go to kids that don’t have any. I think we might fill the bags with some stationary before passing them on to their new owners.

Today is a rainy day that will be spent indoors decluttering the house. I've already set aside clothes we don't use anymore and will tackle the kids' toys next...

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