Saturday, October 22, 2011

the time the president came to town

October 22, 2011
Remember a few months back how the Vice President came to town? I still have no idea why. Well now, without having to go to far I’ve seen the President also. Here’s the story.
Last week my kids who had their dance they won at the Pintados in Tacloban in June were told they were dancing during Leyte Landing for the President. The kids were so excited, and I was so skeptical. We were told last year the President was coming and he didn’t. I guess the year before they were told he was coming, but he didn’t. So I was not holding my breath (same response when I heard the Vice President was coming), and kept my interest on the typhoon coming in that never happened.
On Tuesday I got a text from my Regional Manager saying the Leyte volunteers were invited to the same dinner we were invited to last year, but we needed to RSVP because this time the US Ambassador (his Excellency) was coming. C, who was told to arrange the invite, thought that the Ambassador would not be to the dinner. The dinner was good. The show was good; there was fireworks a theatre show and a dancing performance. The Ambassador did in fact come, along with all of his entourage but didn’t see us.

Next morning we woke up early to do the Peace Walk again but this year we only had three of us (last year was close to 20). We’d been told that the Ambassador had wanted to see us, so we tried to arrange this but they weren’t going to let us on the other side of the blockades, but they were nice enough to let us sit in the back of the veterans group. While sitting a lady came and let us sit with her group in some better seats. They were announcing arrivals of people, and then there was a chopper overhead and they announced the President. He really came.
left to right starting at podium: Canadian Rep, US Ambassador, Governor of Leyte, President Aquino, Mayor of Palo, Australian Rep, Veteran Rep from US, Priest giving a prayer (yes I took the photo op of a prayer, judge not)
He spoke. Our Ambassador spoke, the Japanese Ambassador spoke, some reps from Australia and Canada spoke, and the Mayor of Palo, her son the Governor of Leyte and the President spoke. They then had a parade that my kids were in. Then they got to dance. The actually danced for the President. That thought makes me so happy for them, I would have been so sad for them had he not come. Then they quickly moved the President out of there. What a morning.
In the afternoon C and I spent a nice day at a Tapos eating, drinking, talking and laughing. Leyte Landing the second time was just as good as the first.

Friday, October 14, 2011

I've been asked by a friend to come up with a Christmas list, but I really can't think of anything I need and always feel awkward asking for things. So here is stuff I've gotten in packages that have made all the difference.
Art supplies like markers and colored pencils
Crosswords and sudokus
Books that you loved reading
Granola bars
Fruit snacks
Anything trader joes
Dried cranberries and things like that
Kleenex, baby wipes, sanitizers
Haribu gummy bears
Swedish fish
Red vines
Fancy green teas and other teas
Hot chocolate
Mike&Ikes, Hot Tamales, etc.

I know it is super early, but I'm already listening to Christmas music (some on my own accord). Also, Santa is very slow to get to these parts. Which is fine, I loved getting gifts clear into valentines day. But sooner shipments are better than later shipments. Packages normally take 2 weeks, but December mail takes 4-8. I'm not sure the cut off.

Friday, October 07, 2011

world teacher day

October 6, 2011
Yesterday was one of my favorite days here so far. I think that the US needs to get in on World Teacher Day. It is fun that all the volunteers had different types of things at their schools from going to the beach, to a teacher sports fest turned into a trip to the bar, to post-typhoon clean ups.
Here is what the student teachers did for us, I’ll do separate posts just for the pictures because I for once took a bunch.
The opening ceremony was the most feel good part. They called us all up on stage based on grade level and then had the students bring up gifts. I got cards, flowers, paper medals, and another mug (mug count is now up to 8). They then called us up on stage and a student sang some song about a hero. Then we went to the canteen for breakfast of sliced bread, boiled eggs, and pink hot dogs.
After we went and prepared for a talent show. Grade 5 was going to dance. Little known fact, I was in show choir and did ok, but not great. This was so different. We had about 2 hours to learn the dance and 5th graders are not the best choreographers, especially when they don’t stop the music, don’t allow for mastery before adding new moves, and you’ve got other teachers adding their own moves. It was fun nonetheless and the group of pupils watching seemed to think I was doing ok.
We worked up quite an appetite. For lunch we had chicken, pork, fish, rice, rice, rice, and not a vegetable in sight. The big hit was fruit salad, but not the kind with cheese, corn, and elbow macaroni. This had Filipino fruit cocktail, Tang, and ice. It was scooped into glasses and a drink salad. Very good.
After eating it was time for the contest. Most grades just danced. Some sang and danced. One sang only. One had a poem and a dance. It was fun to see what people prepared with such short notice.
The student teachers also had parlor games for us. This is also when they brought out the tuba. I love parlor games in the Philippines because you get to see adults do things they would never do at home with such great enthusiasm. I also learned that most relays and races are very difficult when you are sometimes a foot taller than your team mates. We didn’t do much winning, but it wasn’t always my fault.
To end the day they gave away prizes and then I walked home exhausted after a good but very long day.

this ain't your granny's parlor

The parlor game portion of World Teacher Day:
Paper Dance: each team has 3 members that have to get on piece of paper when music stops. Each time the paper is folded in half. 
egg toss

Kalamansi Relay, which is just like an egg race.

Motion Picture

Pinoy Henoy. Kind of like 20 questions.

back it up like a tonka truck

The talent show portion of World Teacher Day:
Our dancers showing us the moves.

This is my group. We danced to song.

My choreographers!

start to world teacher day

Opening ceremonies for World Teacher Day!
Grade 1-most of these ladies are on my library committee!

this is what it looks like before being mauled with awesomeness!

pretty much my whole school staff

the gifts and flowers

the science of dancing

Tuesday was the Area Math and Science Camp. And of course a math and science camp would not be complete without dancing. Here are some pictures of each of the schools.

these girls and the girls in the next picture are my students!