Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Culture Clash

By that, I mean a real giant clash that makes room for absolutely zero overlap, just for today. 

I’m a bit anxious these days because I’m quite a bit behind schedule in terms of teaching, and the students will be taking their mid-term exams next week.  Given that the students are extremely behind in their mathematical skills, I am eager to max out on every class time.  But in the middle of my third class, a student came to call all girls outside for a girls-only assembly.  It turns out the female teachers wanted to check the length of the girls’ skirts.  Most skirts come down right beneath the knee, but even with the slightest sight of the knee, a student will be punished.  I then looked at the kids, and felt pity (ooooooooh the post structural gaze!) as they are in puberty, and naturally, growing out of their skirts rather quickly.  Then, I think about how some families would have a hard time purchasing a new skirt for the growing child.

Anyways, I was more pissed at how I was left with all the boys in the middle of the lesson.  I continued on with the lesson, but I let my last class just do their homework instead.  And being frustrated, and not having much more work to do for the day, I left class early.  I’m getting used to the first period starting half an hour late because of the assembly/ disciplinary punishment/ sweeping, but for now, I do not understand why mass disciplinary action / ultra-conservative uniform check has to happen in the middle of the day. 

1 comment:

Mbele said...

As a Tanzanian in the USA, I can relate to culture clash. In the beginning, things were rather strange, but now I think the differences between African and American culture are quite hilarious. I have written a book about this.