Georgetown – Project Director update

Hey everyone! Kelly here.

I have now been back in Guyana for 10 days! It has been such an incredible experience to return to Guyana this year as one of the Project Directors. Having spent 8 weeks teaching here last year, it’s been so great to reunite with old friends, recognize former students (oh, how I’ve missed being called “Miss Kelly”!), eat at my favourite restaurants, and be able to confidently navigate the streets of Georgetown right from the start (I’m not as directionally-challenged as many have accused me of being). It’s also been a lot of fun passing along all of my knowledge to this year’s Peer Educators!

Walking to Chase Academy!

This morning we were all woken up by a torrential downpour outside, and we scrambled to close the heavy windows in our rooms so that our belongings wouldn’t get soaked. Fortunately, the rain ended quickly, and we were able to put our umbrellas away during our walk to Chase Academy, where the 4 Georgetown PEs taught a lesson about hygiene, nutrition, and disease to a Form 4 (Grade 10) class. I have been observing the PEs in all of their teaching sessions this week, and it has been amazing to see the vast improvement in their teaching even between their first lesson on Monday and now. They’re still getting used to understanding their students’ accents, but I’ve assured them that in a few weeks they’ll be pros at it.

For lunch, I let the PEs lead the way to Shanta’s, a little restaurant close to home that serves awesome pumpkin curry and roti. The PEs were at first confused as to which direction to turn at which streets, but with my help they mastered the path from Rima Guest House to Shanta’s, which I’m sure they will visit often during their time here.

Last night I created a simple map of Georgetown, with restaurants, schools, hospitals, and other important locations highlighted, which will be helpful for the PEs as they slowly familiarize themselves with the city. There’s lots of empty space on it, which they can fill in as they discover new places that I never explored last year!

A map of Georgetown that I drew for the Gtown PEs, with important buildings and locations.

In the afternoon, the PEs split up to teach at different schools. Beth and Sydney taught at Chase, while Arash and Leslie taught at Community College. This marks the first time that they taught in pairs instead of a group of 4 since they’ve been in Guyana. They all did an awesome job, and were super excited to read through the comments and questions written by their students at the end of class.

I have thoroughly enjoyed all of my Project Director duties this week, including introducing the PEs to Ms. Toney (our main contact at the Ministry of Culture, Youth, and Sport), setting up a meeting at Lifeline, observing the PEs as they teach in various schools, giving advice on lesson plans, and showing them everything Georgetown has to offer. Yesterday I got to witness the PEs buy their very first bags of juice at Juice Power!

Georgetown PEs holding bags of juice from Juice Power, after a day full of teaching sessions and meetings!
Being back in Guyana brings back so many memories from last year. I can’t even express how special my experience as a PE last year was, and I’m so happy that I get to guide this year’s PEs and help make the project even better than before. I have full confidence that the PEs will do an amazing job this year. I have watched them improve as teachers over the past 7 months, from their very first time teaching during their interviews last October to handling rowdy students in their teaching session this afternoon. Sometimes I wish that I could be a PE again this year and join them!

– Kelly

Posted in Georgetown.

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