Sunday, August 29, 2010

Is It Really One in the Morning!

Hey everyone! I'm just sitting here using my, still spotty, but much awaited, internet in my apartment! Just thought I'd pop in. I know, you're so used to me going months now between posts, you've stopped checking, you may not have even noticed my post about GLOW below this one, and that is all my fault! I've lost my followers ;)

Nothing amazing really to report. It's just hot hot summer still. But it did rain a couple days last week and the ever so dry and dusty hills around my house turned a little greener! I was just visiting Lankaran and Lerik down in the south of Azerbaijan last week. Lerik is just beautiful and full of green mountains! Then I headed home to get my teaching counterpart and headed to Ganja for our Counterpart Conference. It was a really successful couple of days I think, my teacher seems a lot more motivated. All these things that I've heard time and time again, and tried in my own way to introduce into the school, she saw demonstrated by other Azeri's and it makes so much more sense to her now! I'm just referring to making lesson plans before each class, ways to use the textbook so the teachers don't get in trouble for not, but still putting our own, actually productive twist on it, clubs we could try, grants we could write, how to co-teach instead of just me becoming a "substitute teacher." Her and I are meeting tomorrow to discuss our approach plan to the school year that starts on September 15, I am feeling really pumped about her new found energy!

On Tuesday I'm heading to Qax, which is up north but over in the middle finger (as we refer to them; I live in the west most finger, just so you can get a grasp of what I mean). My friend Lori has a camp going on and a bunch of us are going to help. I can't wait to see Qax, I hear it's beautiful. Then on Saturday I'm off on the night train to pick up Erin and Katie!!!! They will be here on the fifth and I am just peeing my pants, waiting to see them!

I could never get a picture to load (I was going to share a little photo from my journey, riding in the back of a sheep truck after my bus broke down on my way to Lankaran. But I guess you'll have to use your imagination). Love you!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

You're G.L.O.Wing my mind!!!!!!!

The last week of July we held G.L.O.W. (Girls Leading Our World) for 50 Azeri girls from all over Azerbaijan! It was honestly the best week of my time here. I spent a good 6 months (along with some other dedicated PCVs :)) getting this camp together and it all played out it 6 days. But I really feel like I did something good for these girls. For most of these girls, that one week at GLOW will be the best time of their life. I brought two girls from Qazax. I have so many pictures but I'm not going to do another post like my fam's visit so I hope you can get the awesomeness out of these few pictures!
We started every morning with some sort of morning exercise. This morning was yoga.
Everyday there we had two sessions on something like leadership, being active, role models, gender issues and so on. This day we on teamwork and creativity. The girls had to make spaceships to protect them from aliens. One group of girls actually made a machine to turn the aliens into their friends! Break my heart :)

We did tie-dye thanks to a lot of you!!!!
Talent show!!! The PCV councilors, to set the mood, dressed up as the Spice Girls. We got ready before dinner and refused to answer to our regular names and to not talk in a British accent until after the talent show. The girls, although maybe they didn't really understand, thought we were HILARIOUS! I was Ginger Spice!

We put on a play, "The Three Little Sheep," close to the "Three Little Pigs," but culturally sensitive.
Self-defense....I let Shalala punch me in the face so she could get the full effect ;)
Dance off! I know that if Amanda and I weren't councilors we would have won.
Teamwork exercise.
Klub Glow!!!! The dance was the girls favorite night of GLOW.
The last night we had a camp fire and roasted marshmellows, thanks to a lot of you. Most of the girls at never had a s'more before.

We gave all the girls certificates for completing GLOW.
The ride home, all the Ganja, Shemkir, Tovuz and Qazax girls, sad to be leaving GLOW, but we have made plans to see each other and try to teach what was taught at GLOW to girls not able to go. GLOW was awesome! Thats all I have to say :)