Lasting Impressions

Today it really hit me that I am in Africa.  I think it is because today is our last day in Africa.  When I first arrived I did not have a huge culture shock.  I think it was because I came here knowing that the people here are people just like me but they live a different life style and they have different colored skin.  They do what they need to support them and go on about their everyday life.


Here is a few lasting impressions that will always hold a place in my heart: (in no particular order)


  1. No matter where I go I will always love to shop.  In the past two days (alone) I think I have been to the Maassi Market 3 times.  I only had things to barter and even though I walked away more times then I wanted I still had a fun time.  Especially when I went back in to find my rifiki (frined) Jeremy.  A huge group of us were leaving and I knew Jeremy was still shopping.  I asked the venders if they knew which isle my tall mozungu rifiki (white friend) was in.  As I went down the isle they were saying that I found my rifiki and to come into their shop.  I think they figured it out when I was blitzing through the market to find Jeremy.
  2. Hakuna Matata and pole pole (slowly slowly)- the exact two mottos of how people in Tanzania live their life.
  3. If I had more time with them I would have taught them more about number concepts.  It was really hard to go in everyday and see my students struggle and have misconceptions with adding, subtraction, multiplication, division, and number concepts.  They would be working on a new concept that my teacher or I have taught and still have to struggle with concepts that they should have learned in the younger grades.  At Tetra (my school) their way of helping with students who are struggling in math is to give them more problems to work on the same concept.  More practice makes perfect but if you do not take the time to it with students and teach them another way or coach them through the process then the excessive practice problems will still be a struggle for students.
  4. Community-in the classroom and in the streets.  In my teacher assisting and student teaching placement I was able to see how the classroom community was set up but I never had to build my own community.  In my classroom here I had more opportunities to build my own community of learners.  I now have better confidence that I will be able to create a community of learners in my classroom back in the states.
  5. Unexpected Friends-It never even crossed my find that I would become such close friends with people in my study abroad group or even people here in Africa.  Walking from school to the dalah dalah I thought I would b-line it without talking to people but we stopped quite a few times to talk to safari drivers that we have met.  It just amazes me that we find each other-the world seems really small when you run into people you are not expecting to run into.
  6. No matter how hard you are on your students they will always love you.  I would say that I am a stickler on rules and how I want my classroom to be run because I want to create a safe environment to learn.  I also know that at the end of the day you need to have fun.  To create that experience is tough.  It is something that I will keep working on every day in my classroom.


I am not going to cry because my trip is over, I am just happy that it happened and that I was able to experience everything I have here.


Until we meet again Africa,



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