When preparing for this journey, I did what any neurotic or rather meticulous and eager traveler (thank you euphemisms!) would do. I read about Zambia and was surprised to find the national language is English. The “Oh everyone knows English,” in me assumed everyone would be speaking English and you know what assuming does; it makes an… issue for people because they think they know everything and then are proven so embarrassingly wrong. However, as a teacher I love to fall, fix it, get back up, and try again. I realized the importance of the E.L.L (English Language Learners) strategies when working with these students. Changes to instruction were critical, so I increased emphasis on vocabulary and visuals, decreased the speed of my speaking, and am attempting to learn some phrases in Nyanja (the local language spoken in Lusaka). Using all of the strategies, the literacy bridge from America to Zambia is being built. It began with reading, then writing, and now speaking. On that note, Zikomo or thank you, for following our literacy life abroad.
I enjoy reading these posts and have been thinking of you often the past week or so.
The best part of teaching is the learning! Enjoy!