Eden’s New Education Program

After the festivities of Chinese New Year settled down, we began a new routine at Eden.  This semester, the girls are studying at home.  Each morning, they walk up to our “schoolhouse” well before 8:00 to practice reading aloud or doing homework.  Classes begin at 8:00, although the girls get up at 6:00 to spend an hour reading before breakfast.  I teach English in one room to the 6th graders while the Chinese teacher has the 5th graders.  At 10:00, we switch.  With such small classes, the girls are doing well and are each able to get the instruction and attention they need.  I’m enjoying teaching at least as much as they enjoy learning.  Teaching, and learning a second language come with many humorous moments.  I asked one of the girls during class, “How old are you?” and she responded, “I’m seven o’clock!”  The class burst into laughter and they still haven’t let her forget.

In addition to English and Chinese, they have math and music.  They take the public bus into town in the afternoons to see a math tutor.  On Tuesday afternoons, two music teachers come and teach for 2-3 hours.  They teach piano, guitar, and voice.  Already musically gifted, the girls love their music class.  A few weeks ago, they had the opportunity to perform for an audience at a factory in another city.  They sang one song and danced another.   Eden has been ringing with the “sound of music”; or shall we say, the sound of learning music, as they patiently work through the notes of their new songs every evening.  By the end of the semester, I would not doubt that “Fur Elise” and “Ode to Joy” will both have been played several hundred times! (this blog story was written by their volunteer English teacher, Sarah).
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