by Rebecca Cooper
This is the outside of the school I teach in. It is a big square building with four floors and a courtyard on the inside. It has a little play ground off to one side, and farther away are soccer fields, a track, and a basketball court. Its title of ‘Progimnazija’ is very sought after and requires the school to meet very rigorous standards. Only a few schools in Vilnius have this title.
We have opening in this room which is basically where we spend the first 10 minutes of class going over rules, the date, and the weather. We have a volunteer come up and point to the date or how the weather looks outside. We then ask what it is. “Is it raining?” This is followed by “No it’s not raining. It’s Sunny.” We do the same for the date. As time goes on they learn to associate the pictures with the words and are able to tell us the weather without the pictures. They love to go up to the wall and point things out even though they know the words now.
This is the pre language room. This is for really little kids who are just learning how to speak; not just English but any language. The black wall on the back is a chalk board. It gets re decorated often with the seasons. Most recently it was decorated for Thanksgiving.
The other half of the room is where we keep our supplies. When we came to Lithuania, we had to carry one suitcase full of supplies to use to teach our kids. This room is usually where we hang out to prepare our lessons for the day or to get away from the kids. Most of the supplies are gone now.
This is the classroom I teach in. It looks really nice but I just got lucky. I’m the only classroom with the wood paneling. My partner got a classroom that had a lot of paint coming off the wall and it wasn’t as nice. She then got moved to a bigger classroom later on. They redid a few classrooms before the start of school. I think mine was one of the most recent to be redone.