Craig’s Travel Diary

Friday, 02 Mar 2007

Location: Amarpukushi, India

MapHey everyone,

Well I'm now in my final week at the village and as predicted I'm itching to move onto somewhere else.

Village life has been pretty good this week with no bouts of illness and I've been able to keep busy. The English teaching has been going really well. Me and another PV, Claire have been taking a group of 5 kids aged around 10 years old and using our......unusual teaching style to improve their English. Even though we've only done half a dozen lessons so far we can really see a difference in the speech and written work. We've been using the strategy of making pretty much everything a game which they have really enjoyed. We've also been going in at lunch-time to play cricket and I've now realised I will never make the Lancashire squad! I've actually had a lot of fun and found the teaching pretty rewarding which has surprised me but I can't believe how much work it takes just to prepare a lesson and this is just 5 kids between 2 of us, its certainly given me a new appreciation for how difficult a teachers job is.

Other than this we've been collectively working on a mural for the maternity building but I'm now only permitted to paint large, easy sections after discovering why I only scrapped through my art GCSE! Also been having random conversations with students around the college campus who want to improve their spoken English, questions include, "What is your fathers profession?", "How much do I earn?", "Can they come to live at my house in England?" and the old classic of "Are you married" to which I've started replying yes and my wife is back home looking after our 4 children which seems to throw them!

On Sunday itís a huge festival in Northern India called 'Holi' - the festival of colours. This is basically a celebration of good over evil where everyone throws paint at each other of all colours which represent that on this day everyone is the same no matter what their colour or caste. I'm looking forward to this as it's a huge deal here and the village is hyped up with festival fever.

I leave on Wednesday and where all going to Agra for a couple of days to finally see the Taj Mahal which is meant to be breathtaking so no doubt you'll all be bombarded with pictures of that!

Hope its warming up back home! Cheerio!