Teaching English

Orientation Begins

March 20 –

So… having a lot of problems with the wifi here in this new hotel. In fact, that is the number one complaint of us fellows. The hotel, while older and more beautiful than the previous hotel, it is not as comfortable. There is mold in the shower, the beds move, only a few of the outlets work, so each night, I have to crawl on the ground to unplug the lamp by my bed so I can plug in my phone charger.

I had a very rough night last night. I was very uncomfortable and could not get to sleep. When I woke up – it turns out that the pillow on the bed had down feathers and my eyes were swollen.

Our day starts early here and I hate waking up early. Breakfast is from 6:45 to 7:30am. Classes start at 8:00 sharp! They are the one thing that is always on time. We have had this reinforced to us many times. We are on a contract here and our behavior is closely monitored.

Breakfast was fruit, bread, coffee and juice. For being in Colombia, the land of coffee, their coffee is weak and useless. Very disappointing. I am unable to eat the eggs as they are mixed with milk and cheese. I have decided that this is my one and only breakfast that I am getting up for. I have brought bars with me and I can buy coffee from the store and make it in our apartment.

Today we had a talk from the heads of our recruitment organizations and from the ministry of education. We are here to work as partners with the ministry of education. The Colombian government had made it their goal to bring bilingualism to their country. They are sending all 103 of us out across the country to teach students English in their classrooms alongside classroom teachers. We are not replacing the classroom teachers, only joining them in ensuring their students learn the English language. We are also helping the teachers to improve their knowledge of the English language.

The 103 of us are from 43 different countries and are all encouraged to teach the culture of our country in the classroom as well. I am so excited to start!

We had a morning break of juice and some type of sweet bread.

Lunch consisted of several starches as I don’t eat chicken. They had to list me as vegan, because I don’t eat dairy, chicken or pork. I thought it was nice of them to have the vegan option at all, but it was weird to have potatoes and rice for a meal. They did have a mini salad bar that was great and I loaded up on that. Again they served us more juice. Colombia has a ton of different fruits that the rest of the world has never heard of. This was my chance to try a lot of them!

Afternoon break was accompanied by coffee. Again, the coffee was very weak. I am not sure what the deal is. We ended up getting coffee from the café and it was nice and strong. Maybe it’s just because they are trying to serve 103 people quickly.

We had a last meeting and then the meetings were done for the day.

I was exhausted!


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