Westtown, I Don’t Think we’re in Pennsylvania Anymore

(From March 9th because of internet issues)

People always tell you right before you leave for another country that you’re going to experience major culture shock. It’s difficult to prepare yourself for what you see in a country like Ghana. People are everywhere, walking on the side of the roads that are covered with trash. Goats are everywhere, and yes I mean everywhere. Unlike in the States where cars move out of the way for people, people walking on the side of the road are expected to jump out of the way for cars because they drive all over the roads, on whatever side they can to avoid holes or just where ever they want.

For the first day, after the ten and a half hour long plane ride with a screaming toddler just two seats away from me, we took a bus two more hours to the guest house we are staying in for the next two weeks. We met some people from the village we are in and struggled to keep our eyes open so that we could adjust to the time difference.

The next day, Monday, we had to adjust our schedule because it was Ghana’s Independence Day, so there was no school. Instead of teaching, we went to Coconut Grove Resort and relaxed at the pool and the beach all afternoon.

Today was our first day at Heritage Academy. Throughout the day we taught classes that we planned weeks ago and led reading groups to help the seventh and eighth graders with their reading skills. My class, a dance class, was definitely a big learning experience. The teachers had warned us that the students don’t pay attention too well sometimes, but I was not expecting it to be at the degree it went to. I definitely had struggles with getting the students to commit to the activities and not to be self-conscious about dancing in front of each other, and students looking out from different classrooms. It has helped me learn about how important it is for teachers to be able to adapt and change lesson plans depending on what interests the students and at what level they are.

Tomorrow, is another teaching day but in the afternoon we are going to a nearby town to visit the market.

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