May is ending, and I’m shocked that I have only four more days of lessons. Today was my last day with my ninth form students. We sat and discussed our futures. I asked them what they plan to do this summer, after school is finished. Many don’t know, but one student told me he plans to study ecology here at the agroindustrial college. I had no idea he was interested in ecology, so that was an exciting surprise. Another student told me she wanted to go to college as well.
It’s interesting here in that students don’t need to make the decision about college until August, whereas in the states, if we want to get into a good school, we need to start applying as early as October or November for early admissions (thinking back to my high school days). Also, students go to college after ninth form, and then from there to university. So, the system is different, and I’m amazed at the relaxed atmosphere. They’re honest when they say they don’t know what they want to do next, but it’s good they have time to think about it.
Also, when I asked them where they see themselves in five years, most of them said university, or that they didn’t know. Then, they asked me questions about what I would do with my summer. I told them I would be in Moldova until July, travel around Europe a bit, then go home at the beginning of August. I told them I plan to come back and I hope they would still be in Moldova so I can visit them.
On Tuesday, the same class performed a skit about their experiences here at school. It brought me to tears and bursts of laughter because of the sentimental atmosphere. Doamna Rodica, their homeroom teacher and one of my English partners, told me today after I mentioned my surprise to their talents in acting, that it was because I had encouraged them during English class to do improvisational skits. After she saw their potential for theatre through those opportunities in class (we acted out a variety of funny skits, such as getting a haircut, helping an old person cross the street, robbing a bank, etc), she was inspired to organize an end-of-the-year skit for the school, which is the one I just mentioned.
One of my favorite parts was when the boys sang a song that, when translated, goes something along the lines of: “I love school, this is true. I love school, but I don’t know why.” Another great part was when they asked former professors to dance with them, and at the end when they passed along lessons learned to their younger siblings then danced with them. They recited poems for all the teachers for whom they didn’t make skits. One student, Dan, recited his in English, thanking me and my partners for teaching him English and believing in him. Another great part of the event was when the students acted out a typical day in English class — oh, how they dramatized test day like it was a day from hell! I have a video of it, but unfortunately I can’t attach it.
Anyway, here are some photos:
I am so proud of these students for all they have accomplished, especially the student leaders who participated in our recycling project “Let’s Recycle, Riscani!” this year – Jana, Ruxanda, and Nastia. They were there alongside me and Doamna Svetlana, a biology teacher, throughout the development and implementation of this project. Without them, our school would not have been put on the map both in Moldova nationally and beyond internationally for ecological activities. I hope that whatever they decide to do next, they will remember this experience and know that they are capable of whatever they set their minds to – because of them, Moldova has a brighter future.