Friday, October 19, 2012


This week has been flying by. Monday morning got a ride into Tafuna with our landlords, which was nice. I finally told them about how our fridge doesn't shut all the way (we've been using duck tape), and they brought up a different one on Tuesday afternoon. Rather exciting!

The school day went by a bit slow, but that's because I'm not really teaching this week. It's mid-terms. A lot of study time, questioning time, and test-taking time. Monday good review with my 1st period as they took the exam Tuesday, and all my other classes handled their study time well (at least they remained quiet).

Left right after school, as I had everything ready to go for Tuesday. Decided to do the "Tight Buns and Killer Legs" workout video twice with some abs in between, which took about an hour. Then, I finished out my workout for the day by jogging up the Hill. One day off of that but back on it.

After a simple yet scrumptious peanut butter and banana sandwich for dinner (I really am never too hungry for dinner/supper, as I have been exercising regularly and get a decent breakfast and lunch at school). I find myself basically a vegetarian again. I officially gave it up before moving to American Samoa after being veg for 4 months, but I was worried about offending locals in certain situations. For instance, at the landlord dinners or at church, I haven't refused a scoop of meat out of respect. I'm also slightly curious, so wanted to try some things. I'm still not officially vegetarian again; I'm a bit of a flexatarian at the moment. Anyways, just something going on right now. I don't ever cook meat at home, and often at school lately I've been skipping the meat or picking it out.

Anyways... that was a sidetrack, but I find it interesting. I spent some time looking at my photos from White Sunday, and I decided I really liked some of them in black and white. Here they are:

Tuesday got a ride in the back of a pickup truck to the intersection before a walk down the Tafuna road (more exercise). I stopped at a store on the way, as I did not have much reason to be at school too early and bought myself an orange juice (as I've had a bit of a bug and it's going around school and an iced tea to enjoy during my prep period). Both good decisions :-)

The school day ended early at 2:05pm Tuesday as scheduled to allow for some teacher grading time and various meetings. At first I wondered what I would do with myself until Zumba started at 4:30 as were back on track for it this week. As I finished grading and checking some emails, I decided to do a little exercise in my classroom until it was time for Zumba class. I stretched, did some warm up moves from my "Tight Buns and Killer Legs" video, did some ab exercises, some jumping jacks, and shuttle runs. All in my classroom, yep. haha Went to Zumba already sweating a bit.

New thing with Zumba today, another instructor and her class joined us in the cafeteria. I guess they don't really have a space for their class, so we may be doing class together for a while. This was the biggest Zumba group I had ever been a part of, which was cool, and we went at a seemingly faster pace. Very aerobic, which I enjoyed! Zumba for an hour, and then I caught a ride to the bus stop with one of our Vice Principals. Got off the bus, dropped off my bag, and went for my jog up the hill. Figured I could end my workout for the day after all that. Classroom workout, 1 hour of Zumba, and the uphill jog.

Lots of rain on Tuesday. It was down pouring for a while this morning while at school, still going some at lunch time. Water everywhere. Then, Tuesday night after it turned dark, some more major downpours accompanied by a little thunder and lightning. Some of the biggest downpours I've seen yet while here.

I had originally set my alarm early thinking I might get up and exercise before school on Wednesday, but then hit the snooze or thought I did at 4:45am. Next thing I know I roll over and it's 6:05am. Little past my normal time of waking up. Still plenty of time to get ready, though. haha Ended up walking out and getting a ride with our landlord again. He dropps us off about a block away from school as he turns at an intersection. Then, luck so not be have it, it begins to downpour as we are walking. Make a pit stop for a coffee from McDonald's as we were plenty early and just sounded good. Had my umbrella (It's always in my backpack), but water still runs down my back, especially when I share my umbrella with a friend. Very thankful to have my backpack with a water resistant liner that my dad sent me. I was not worried about my laptop at all :-)

Got a ride to school with a really nice couple on Thursday for our last day of mid-terms. Speaking of mid-terms... boy, I was a bit disappointed in how many students tried to cheat. I mean a bunch tried on my few quizes, too, but I had been explaining beforehand that I would be highly disappointed if I caught them doing it. Plus, I had told them time and time again, exams were a small percentage of their overall grade; so it's not worth it. Rule #1 was no talking during the exam. I took off points on all but maybe 5 students today for that.  Had to follow through, especially since this is one way some of them try to cheat. I have been amazed by how hard some of them try to cheat. I guess it probably went on more than I realized back when I was in high school. As they all ended up finishing before the end of the period, we had a nice chat about why I had some exam rules listed on the board and why cheating really isn't worth it. I had told them from day one that exams had to be done, but that is not what I wanted to focus on in class. All is well, part of being a teacher. Everything single one of my classes, though. Oye, I was getting frustrated with some of them for it, but by the time I administered my last exam I found myself laughing at the fact. My seniors seemed to realize how stupid it was, especially after I told them how many points the exam was actually worth.

A few of my senior girls stayed after class and helped me sweep my floor and ended up giving my room a makeover. They wanted to put the desks in groups, so I figured we'd give it a shot. I decided to move some of my posters, and one student redid the quote I have above my board. Starting the 2nd quarter with the room slightly rearranged. I'll post some photos on my next post. Didn't have a camera with me today. It was super nice of them to help, and I'm digging the new vibe of the classroom, especially with some ideas I want to try this quarter.

Then, I treated myself to a soft-serve vanilla ice cream cone Thursday afternoon before a 2:00 meeting, as I had a good chunk of grading done; besides, I simply had a hankering for one. Yummy. Vanilla ice cream - my favorite dessert :-)

After our staff meeting, I did some more grading before heading to big Zumba class again. Fun and sweaty time! One of my new favorite Zumba moves reminds me of the chimney sweeps dancing to "Step In Time" in Mary Poppins. Some of you may know exactly what I mean.

My Field Director for WorldTeach was at Zumba today. When she saw me, she came up and said "I saw there was a pulagi up here". Haha yep, that's me. Got a ride home with Pepe, one of the teachers, and then I jogged up the Hill, and then did about 20 minutes of "Tight Buns and Killer Legs" before chilling out for the night. Feeling good :-)

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