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giving thanks

Turkeys hanging around the compost bin at schoolI bought these turkeys 6 months ago as babies and planned to fatten them up before Thanksgiving, but I love having them around the school so much that I don't think I have it in me to kill them just yet, plus with my dad here I'm not feeling as homesick for turkey as I usually do this time of year.

My math teacher, Bhadra Sir quit this week leaving me with just a few days notice.  Oh the joys of running a school.  He got a job offer up in the remote mountain area in a government school closer to his home.  He is a good math teacher and though part of me is frustrated with him for leaving me in this predicament in the middle of the school year, another part of me is *thankful there will be a good math teacher up there in the mountains where schooling and education are hard to come by.  

So I've found myself teaching math these past few days, flipping through the text books of each respective grade trying to get a grasp on where they're at in their lessons minutes before each class and you know what? I secretly love being a math teacher.  I love checking homework every day and leaving smiles and hearts with a red pen when they get a perfect paper.  I love teaching perimeter to the 4th graders, calculating the perimeter of the classroom, and the desks and the soccer field and then drawing different shapes up on the board and calculating those too.  At one point one of the boys shouted out, "this is like a fun game!" 

I can't believe I spent my whole life disliking math so much when I actually really enjoy teaching it.  (Even if I did forget what 9 x 6 was yesterday in a speedy game of around the world.)  In between trips to the water office to apply for another water line, and completing our annual audit report, and having our NGO renewed, it was just good to be in the classroom again with the kids, laughing and learning together and having that feeling of "oh yah, this is really what it's all about." 

Yesterday I took the first ten minutes of each class and told the story of Thanksgiving, comparing it with the Dashain and Tihar festival that we just celebrated here in Nepal.  Then, we sat in a circle out in the playground with the turkeys gobbling nearby and spoke one by one about what we were all grateful for.   Well, all of the kids pretty much said the same thing; they were thankful for our school, the teachers and I, learning, books parents and family members that work to give us the opportunity to go to school.  And even though they were at SCHOOL, sitting with ME, their one and only princiPAL, and all pretty much saying a variation of the same thing, I have a hunch they really meant it.  And all I could think about was how thankful I was for them, my Kopila students.  They make my day every day and there's no one else I would rather pass my time with.  

If you haven't seen Epic Thanks started by my friend Stacey floating around Facebook and Twitter, it's about time you stop by and check it out.  A gorgeous way to express our gratitude!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all and please, eat an extra bite of Turkey for me ;)

Reader Comments (6)

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone at KVCH!! Happy that the turkeys got a pardon (for now!) Eat some momos for us and we will have some turkey for you! I am so grateful for all that you do for the children there and so grateful for the inspiration that you give to us here! (((Hugs))) all around!!

November 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa B

Great to see Scorpio in the background.
Happy Thanksgiving!

November 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAshwin

Instead of being bitter about the incident -- short notice, you have taken it as a challenge and provided a solution with utmost patience. Bravo!

Kids are lucky to have someone like you as their mentor...

Happy Thanksgiving...


November 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRBK

Maggie, I just read this post and we are now running out the door for Thanksgiving at Alice's. We will hold you there in spirit! I'm so glad your dad is there with you. My love to both of you (well, really to all of you), and please tell you dad his blog is quite amazing. Like father, like daughter. oxoxoxox

November 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNatasha

Happy Thanksgiving Maggie and everyone at Kopila Valley.....

November 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterR

Thanks Maggie for making me remember the gradama turkeys of my childhood, the little peasure of my young mind that calculated the number of beans necessary for the garden bed or how much tissue I need for the new skirt .

Well I think that one turkey left me one feather with wich I wrote (40 years ago we wrote with inch and nib) dreaming the future.

Good math, enjoy your little nepali jewelry

November 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSara Mary

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