Written on: 19/05/2013 by schmidt01 (1 review written)
I have just spent two weeks living in Hellville as a teaching volunteer for Frontier Madagascar. I can honestly say that I have had the time of my life...
On arrival, me and two other teachers were led to a new Volunteer House. Here we found beds, running water, a shower AND a flushing toilet! Luxury at best. The location of the house is perfect, only a short walk from a supermarket, the centre of town, and also the primary school where most lessons are taught.
During our first week we were actively supported by our Project Manager (Coconut Head), he helped us to plan lessons and gave us feedback on our teaching. He also provided baguettes and jams for breakfast and cooked lunch each day - a bonus! Saint-Marie is a primary school ran by nuns with an average of eighty children per class. During my time, I taught every class - totalling over 1300 children altogether. Each lesson was thoroughly enjoyable, the children were enthusiastic to learn and gave 100% in any activity. During break times they were not afraid to practice their English; we were often bombarded with shouts of 'hello' or 'goodbye'. Changes occurring during my time here have been happily welcomed. Instead of teaching eleven 30 minute classes a day, Monday to Friday, the project now includes one-on-one lessons and workshops too. These gave me the perfect opportunity to improve in confidence, teaching a group of up to fifteen children without the aid of a translator.
On top of work at the primary school, there is always the village lesson at Atofondro to look forward to. Their level of English was more advanced, so we were able to teach beyond the basics. Although these lessons can be more challenging, the sense of achievement is immense. Adult education lessons at the weekend are also a treat. Here, there is a varying ability of English but all students are eager to learn and it's fun to teach them.
Overall, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here in Madagascar, and would recommend this project to anyone. I now have memories and friendships to last a lifetime!