Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Quality Education....

I adore my kids. I work with 22 kids at an International School, and they are just so amazingly wonderful - every day is a total commitment on their parts, and it shows. The stuff they create, the things they say, the issues they have gotten behind - it has all been wonderful. The retrospect of this last year began to creep in for me yesterday at some point....

Going from teaching University and College level English Literature and Communications to teaching Grade Five was a huge challenge for me, and doing it in another country, away from my family. I don't really know what I was thinking last June 28th when I accepted this job - giving up the chances to edit an online mag or teach aboriginal students on the most western tip of canada...I don't know what I was thinking - but I knew it was 100% the right decision for me.

My kids have taken me on the journey of my life, and I am so fortunate to be working at a school where they value the relationships teachers build with their kids - they are allowing me to loop up with them into grade six - so another year of these great folks is ahead of me.

To cap off our time together we are engaging in a week of...what is a good piece of education jargon that doesn't mean much more than FUN.....experiential education...there we go....Yesterday we spent the morning baking VEGAN goodies. The purpose was two-fold - get them in the kitchen to play with the soy milk their teacher has been going on about all year, and to whip up some goodies for Mr. Healey's 34th Birthday.

The end results were:
36 vegan cupcakes (chocolate and OH SO NOT SUGAR FREE)
2 layers of a vegan chocolate birthday cake
3 batches of icing - neon green, hot pink and shinny chocolate ("why is it shiny", "because it is pure sugar")

It was really cool - I put the recipes on the board, broke the kids into groups and let them go to it. They had a great time, and the cupcakes were edible (even after they covered them with sugary bits and bobs). Kevin LOVED his cake (read as: didn't burst into flames or start retching when consumed), and was treated to a play that my kids wrote for his birthday. He was showered with cards and balloons - how much do I love my littles.

I added to Kevin's surprise - though I was worried about taxing that aged heart of his - with a birthday surprise supper at ( of course ) La Pizzeria. It was great to see everyone and I do think I managed to outwit my most fantastic nerd.

It has come down to the last days of my first year here and I am so glad to have taken the plunge and followed me heart all the way to Brussels. I think I still have a couple years of school ma'rm in me before heading onto different pastures. And in the mean time, there is still a whole lot of Brussels to veganize!!!!


Bianca said...

How cute! They didn't do half bad with those cupcakes! It's awesome of you to instill vegan cooking skills in these kids at such an early age.

Maggie said...

The cupcakes look beautiful! The littles did such a wonderful job!

The Little Kahuna said...

Awww. What a nice story.