Birthday in Belitsa
Trip Start Apr 14, 2006
102Trip End Jul 2008
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I taught 2 classes that day, one 6th and 7th grade. the classes were only 30 minutes instead of the usual 45 because later that morning was the 12th class graduation. I kept it pretty low key, i figured not only was i a guest but it was a short class, so we did simple stuff to practice speaking and i brought in some postcards of philadelphia
At 11 AM was the 12th class graduation, it was a pretty short ceremony in the school yard followed by lots of horo dancing in the yard and through the school halls. After that the students continued to party and dance all around the town, while the teachers had a party for their colleauge whose son graduated. More eating and dancing in the staff room.
Belitsa seems like an amazing place and i think i'll be so happy there for the next 2 years. Most importantly the school staff seems awesome. Of course, if there are conflicts between individuals i wouldn't see it at first, but in general the atmosphere in the 2 staff rooms seems chummy and relaxed. Dora has a great attitude, and in the long run my bulgarian will be better for having a counterpart who isn't perfect in English. the secondary English teacher is also great - willing to talk to me, told me on both days when she was leaving school to go home to her town, and has already invited me to her house in the mountains over the summer. The school has the rare combination of really needing me (all the teachers can use me to improve their english, plus the secondary teacher is teaching 8 levels - 5th thru 12th - by herself!!) but they also have lots of nice stuff, like 2 computer rooms, internet access, a picture scanner, and even a web camera. they got the stuff participating in a project to communicate with students around the world, sponsored by the US Dept. of State. The project's over now, but i'll use it to do similar stuff. So it seems like i really lucked out with a good combination.
In addition the town itself seems really interesting
So this is the first impression of Belitsa, gained in 3 days, i will know more beginning July 1st. But for now it's back to Kocherinovo.