Sunday, March 22, 2009

Week 8 – Sun.8 March to Sat. 14 March

As Monday was all the IGs day off and it had been Lucy’s birthday on Saturday we had a bit of a party for her – we had dinner at Selbourne (Girls Dorm Campus) then we watched ‘The Sound Of Music’ – Lucy’s choice. Had all the trimmings with birthday cake, slice, sweets and popcorn with the odd person bursting out in song – was a great laugh!
This week I’ve run another Thinking Skills workshop for the Junior School Staff Meeting on the ‘Habits of the Mind’ – didn’t realize that I would be doing PD for the teaching staff here but it’s great to be able to share some of my own knowledge and training with others that rarely receive any professional development in the area of where teaching is in the 21st Century.
Junior School Sports Day was on Friday, unfortunately I only got to see 40 minutes when I wasn’t working with Middle School students – here Sports Day and Swimming Gala are big events in this term’s calendar. Saturday it was Sports Day for the whole school, which is held at the local sports stadium/arena just down the road from school. I didn’t actually attend this event as I ran away to Mysore for 24 hours with Jennifer (Senior Volunteer). We hired a taxi and drove 3 hours down the Ghat (actually 36 hairpins) through the National Parks to Mysore – had an eventful trip down and saw heaps of wildlife. As we were driving along saw 5 elephants that were only about 150-200 metres from the road grazing, also saw two or three different kinds of monkeys, three mongoose (first time I’ve seen them this trip!), wild boar and several spotted deer. Also saw the tame elephants from the elephant camp being washed in the river which we’d missed out seeing when we went to Jungle Retreat. Once we’d arrived in Mysore and booked into our hotel we went to the local market and learnt how they make incense sticks and how they make the expensive fragrances that some of us like to dab on ourselves to smell nice! Got ripped off and highly frustrated by the first auto rickshaw driver that we went in but the next two or three restored our faith in tutt-tutt drivers. In the evening we went to Maharaja’s Palace to see the palace be illuminated by 97000 light bulbs – it’s an amazing sight! It usually is only on a Sunday night but they have just started putting them on a Saturday for half an hour also so we just managed to see them. Afterwards had a wander around Mysore by night as we walked back to the hotel, stopping of at a rooftop restaurant for dinner. The next day we meet Wendy, Andrew (Ian’s Dad) and Prakash for lunch at the Regaalis then dropped Wendy and Andrew off at the railway station headed for Bangalore and then the rest of us headed back up the Ghat. It was a great 24 hour trip to one of my favourite Indian cities.