Friday, December 2, 2011

The End

Here in the hills of Hong Kong (where my blog has actually been hijacked by Chinese characters--ah!) I finally get to catch you up on school with an end-of-semester picture tour. Here's to the grades in the book, the monkeys OUT of my classroom, and my body off of that mountain for a few venturesome weeks. :)

In this class exercise, as you can see, we were studying the ancient Egyptian practice of mummific.....just kidding, your eyes deceive you. While a great sculpture project idea was going tediously too long, I resolved to mix things up for a day. We were working on an animorphs wire project in which students blended the human skeleton with an animal skeleton, and to give the plodding new pizzazz, I had my students turn themselves into the animorphs they were creating. With toilet paper. I told these non-Americans that in the States, women do this exact activity at bridal showers and then have someone judge the best "dress." They thought it was pretty crazy...just like their teacher...

Welcome to Woodstock culture. These ninth graders had the blissful opportunity of dressing as cartoon characters and corpse brides for school, but not of their own accord. On a doleful day in September, the current seniors with lipstick and face paint in hand, got to dress up the freshman, tie a bow on it and call it Friendship Day. You call it hazing, we call it friendship, and it all starts with a parade at morning assembly in front of the 7-12 grades. Besides, who ever got hurt wearing a cardboard box covered in tinfoil on their head?

Just like at Hogwarts, our school has Sports Day, too!

On a cross-curricular field trip with the ninth graders, a Religious Education teacher and myself took 56 students + chaperones to a place called Happy Valley on the other side of Mussoorie. This haven is home to some 5,000 Tibetan refugees who have escaped through the mountains from Tibet, one of whom (for a time) was the 14th Dalai Lama back in the late '50s early '60s. We got to visit their exquisite painting center and Buddhist temple where one of the monks there answered questions and taught us about right living.

What do you get with a handful of Indian kids, two Americans, one Australian, and a ripe-and-ready pigskin? Let me tell you, it is not a game of cricket! On a retreat for the 7-9 graders, an American student decided to bring his football (American that is) out to play, and boy did he decide right. I had not touched one of those things since powderpuff in college so I was pretty excited to run for a few downs. After playing catch for a bit we kicked off a small game of 2-hand-touch by first explaining the rules to the outsiders. It was a grand ole nostalgic time.

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