Friday, April 11, 2008

The Easter Story

So I'm not sure what happened to the children I have been teaching for the last three weeks but today they were completely different children! This is a good thing. They have been terrible since spring break. I guess its like visiting grandma's as a child. It take our parents at least a week and a few spankings to get us back into a routine and acting normal again.

In preschool we did the colors of the rainbow. We made a little book. They read it back to me and it went well. They enjoyed it and it was a good way for me to assess each child individually on their colors. In first grade we did a color/ following directions activity. That went well too. We also read a book and they sat quiet the whole time! This is a first. They looked mezmorized or something. But its third and fourth grade that blew my mind.

We learned about the Easter story. Russian Easter is on my birthday, April 27th. It changes every year like ours but I don't think there is a rhyme or reason to their choice of date. Anyway, not only was my kids behavior extrememly good, but they also participated which means they were understanding our conversation. So we did a KWL chart. For the non education majors out there: K-what you know, W- what you want to know and L-what you have learned. This was my first time to use this in Russia. And I am so glad we did. It was the perfect flow of conversation. So we talked about what we Know about Easter first. There were the typical answers of eggs, Easter bunny, cakes with 1 candle (Russian thing), etc. Then I was shocked. They actually said Jesus. Now it is third grade that really threw me. They said Jesus dying on the cross and then coming alive again. Then on the Want to know section, my dear sweet Sava asked Why did Jesus die?, Why did they kill Him?, and Why did He come back to life?. I was thrilled beyond explanation! I had a book to tell some things and then I just practically gave the plan of salvation. It was so cool. I let them ask questions and made sure they were understanding all the words. I was using the simplist words I could to explain it all. So on the Learned section they had great things to put up.

I was so thrilled. I would have been plenty happy with their good behavior today. But then their questions and interest in the topic. It was great. I can get away with doing this around the holidays. If I do it too often then it becomes more questionable. I had a supervisor ask me if I was only going to talk about religion for Easter. My answer was no. And that was the truth. We also talked about food, the Easter bunny, dying eggs, egg hunts, and traditions around the world.

Also one of my David's in the 3rd grade said in Russian to Polina next to him that Jesus wasn't real. She was not happy about that. She told me in English what he said. So I told him that he was real and then he rolled his eyes at me. But what was great was they rest of the class yelling at him, no He is real!

So I have to go now, but I just wanted to share my cool day with you. We are going to the orphanage on Saturday and sharing Easter as well. So the more prayers that day the better!

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