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The Global  Bulldog


Volume 2,  Issue  1  

Winter/Spring 2014  


Updates from  campus  

From Macedonia  

Read  about  what  has   been  going  on  at   Schoenberg    from  the   PCMI  coordinator.    

Discover what  the  holiday   season  was  like  for  PCMI   student  Britt  Harmon  in   Macedonia.  

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Learn what  PCMI  student   Stephanie  Dempsey-­‐Kalawe   has  been  doing  in  Malawi.        


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Publication of  Gonzaga  University’s  Peace  Corps  Master’s  International  Program  

Ingles, inglish,  Englesh,   engis,  inles,  Engles   Cheyanne  Greer,  PCV  Mozambique    

I  figured  that  after  six  to   ten  years  of  English   lessons,  my  students   would,  at  the  very  least,  be   able  to  spell  the  word   English,  right?  Wrong!  This   is  just  one  teeny  tiny   example  of  the  many   challenges  I  face  teaching   English  here  in   Mozambique.  My  students   grew  up  speaking  one  or   two  local  African  languages.   Then  learned  Portuguese,   the  colonial  and  now  national   language.  In  sixth  grade  they  are   expected  to  start  learning  French   and  English  to  help  communicate   with  their  neighboring  countries   and  the  world.        

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English in  Malawi    

You see,  Mozambique  made  the   decision  after  the  Mozambican   War  of  Independence  ending  in   1975,  to  choose  Portuguese  as   the  national  language  instead  of      

Here  I  am  with  some  of  my  students       English  or  French  because  it   would  be  too  difficult  to  teach     the  whole  nation  a  new   language.  However,  many  of  the   people  never  learned  Portuguese      


because of  the  little  or  no   schooling  available  during  the   struggle  for  independence  and   the  political  violence  that   followed.  Instead  of  changing  the   national  language  when  the   literacy  rate  was  already   so  low,  they  chose  to   keep  Portuguese  and   add  English  as  a  third  or   fourth  language.    Now  with  the  country   slowly  growing,  more   schools  being  built  and   teachers  being  trained,   the  population  is  slowly   becoming  more  literate   in  Portuguese.  This  is  a   positive  sign  of  growth,   but  the  country  is  still   struggling  to  communicate  with   the  rest  of  the  world  –  struggling   to  learn  language  without  proper   materials,  resources  and   teachers.       (Continues  on  page  2)  



The government  has  created  a   new  curriculum  that  looks  great   from  an  outside  perspective.  It   shows  a  somewhat  logical   acceleration  of  English  language   learning  starting  in  sixth  grade.   However,  these  expectations  are   almost  impossible  to  achieve   because  of  certain  situations   within  the  schooling  system  in   Mozambique.  The  schools   consist  of  40  to  100  students  in   each  classroom.  Usually,  the   students  don’t  have  books  and   often  don’t  have  desks  or  chairs.   Sometimes,  classrooms  are   equipped  only  with  a  blackboard   that  is  often  in  bad  shape.  The   students  may  be  hungry  or  sick   or  unbelievably  hot.  Teachers   teach  using  a  mix  of  grammar   translation  and  audio-­‐lingual   methods.  In  my  experience,  the   students  do  not  practice   speaking  in  a  conversational  or   impromptu  manner.  I  have  not   seen  them  learn  how  to  critically   think  or  analyze  problems,  only   to  understand  and  fix  them  in   the  same  way  as  has  always  been   taught.  The  classes  are  so  big  and   hard  to  control;  I  have  found  it   makes  group  work  and  speaking   activities  very  hard  to   successfully  implement.

competency to  continue.  When   this  happens,  it  leaves  them  even   farther  behind.  Teachers  pass   students  for  many  reasons  that   may  have  nothing  to  do  with   their  competency  in  the  subject   matter.  Sometimes  students   make  it  all  the  way  through   school  without  being  able  to   read  or  write.      

Classroom  in  Mozambique    

Classroom  in  Mozambique    

These  students  are  often  passed   from  grade  to  grade  whether  or   not  they  actually  have  the      

When  asked  how  many  of  her  50   students  spoke  Portuguese  at   home  a  local  first  grade  teacher   responded,  “only  one”.  This   problem  exists  throughout   Mozambique.  Parents  often  don’t   learn  Portuguese  themselves  or   choose  not  to  use  it  with  their   children  at  home.  This  often   causes  students  to  be  behind   when  they  begin  school  due  to   the  fact  that  school  is  mainly   taught  in  Portuguese.  It  is   important  to  learn  their  mother   tongue,  but  not  being  exposed  to   Portuguese  at  home  makes  it   difficult  to  communicate  with   other  Mozambicans  or   foreigners.  While  many  students   are  still  struggling  with   Portuguese,  they  start  taking   classes  in  English.  After  four  to   six  years  of  English,  they  still  do   not  have  many  basic  language   skills.          


Here I  am  with  students  who   have  had  years  of  English  and   are  still  struggling.    After  a  year   of  teaching,  I  feel  like  I  have   actually  made  a  difference  in  my   students’  English  skills.  I  have  40   students  that  I  will  be  teaching   basic  sixth  grade  English.  They   will  leave  here  after  2  years   prepared  to  do  what  they  need   to  do,  at  least  as  far  as  English  is   concerned.  I  have  been  able  to   accomplish  this  because  I  work   in  a  small  teacher  training  school   with  classes  of  20  respectful   students.  I  have  a  great   roommate  and  colleagues  with   whom  I  co-­‐teach  and  a   supportive  school.  My  students   are  well  behaved  and  willing  to   learn.  I  was  able  to  use   communicative  methods  in  my   classroom  such  as  group  work   and  student  centered  learning  to   help  them  reach  the  levels  they   need  to  be  successful.     However,  things  are  starting  to   move  forward  in  Mozambique.   The  program  at  my  school  has   changed  from  a  one  year  to  a   three-­‐year  program.     This  means  that  teachers  will   have  two  more  years  of   preparation  before  going  into   schools.  The  new  goal  is  to  focus   on  competency  and  present  new   strategies  and  ideas  for  teaching.   The  government  is  encouraging   the  use  of  didactic  materials.   They  are  also  introducing   transversal  themes  such  as   HIV/AIDS,  pollution,  and  clean   water  into  the  everyday   curriculum.  If  the  government  is   able  to  better  educate  and   (Continues  on  page  3)  



prepare teachers,  then  a  trickle-­‐ down  effect  will  hopefully  follow.   Teachers  will  better  educate   their  students  who  will  then   become  better  learners  and   citizens.   As  a  volunteer  I  often  feel  like   my  contribution  to  Mozambique   is  not  much  if  anything  and  then   I  realize  it  is  the  opposite.   I  have  the  education  and  training   of  future  primary  school   teachers  in  my  hands.  I  have  the   ability  to  pass  on  my  ideas  and   the  methods  and  training  I  have   received.  I  have  the  ability  to   change  the  way  my  students  look   at  the  world.    

If not,  then  at  least  I  have  created   positive  long-­‐lasting   relationships  with  my  students.   They  have  learned  about   American  culture  and  how  to   trust  a  teacher.  They  have   learned  that  students  do  not   have  to  be  afraid  to  learn  and   behave.  They  have  learned  that  I   care  about  them  and  their   future.    


Some of  my  students  


These are  my  girls!    

Matrimony in  Malawi  

Stephanie Dempsey-­Kalawe,  PCV  Malawi    

On August  10,  2013,  I  married  my  best  friend.  We   met  through  a  friend  in  my  village  and  then  I   realized  that  we  lived  very  close  to  each  other.   Turns  out,  to  get  to  my  house,  I  had  to  pass  his.   Every  time  I  passed  by,  hung  out,  or  dropped  by,   we  got  closer.  We  started  dating  in  my  second   year  as  a  volunteer  and  were  engaged  on   December  12,  2012.  The  rest  is  history!  I  truly   have  gotten  more  out  of  my  service  than  I   planned.  Words  cannot  express  my  exuberance!  


I have  the  ability  to  create   critical  thinkers  and  positive   teachers.  If  I  can  make  even  a   small  change  in  the  training  of   these  teachers  that  they  take  out   into  the  field,  then  I  have   accomplished  more  than  I   thought  was  possible.    





An American     in  Macedonia:  The  Christmas     Special  


This was  my  first  Christmas   holiday  away  from  home.    Like   most  unmarried  persons  my  age,   I  would  trek  from  wherever  I   had  ended  up  in  the  preceding   year  back  home  to  celebrate   among  family  and  friends,  in  a   familiar  environment,  with  good   wine,  tons  of  food  involving  pork   products,  and  snow  adventures.     I  knew  this  would  not  be   happening  this  Christmas,   because  at  some  point  you  trek  a   bit  too  far  to  return  on  a  whim,   the  plane  tickets  become  a  bit   too  dear  or,  as  in  my  case,  you   don’t  want  to  miss  out  on  seeing   the  way  holidays  are  spent   elsewhere  and  you  also  aren’t   allowed  to  leave  the  country   until  March  1st.  

Christmas  Dinner     This  year,  I  celebrated  Christmas   twice.    My  first  Christmas  was  in   Skopje,  on  Christmas  day,  with   the  family  of  an  old  friend  whose   relatives  all  happen  to  be   Macedonian.    Knowing  that  I   would  be  in  Macedonia  during  a   holiday  usually  spent  among   family,  my  friend’s  mother   planned  an    

Britt Harmon,  PCV  Macedonia  

entire American  Christmas   also,  doing  my  best  to  help  my   celebration  for  us;  my  friend  Ivo   significant  other  out  when  he   visiting  to  renew  his  work  visa,   had  no  idea  what  was  going  on.     my  boyfriend  Sean  visiting  to  see   It  was  a  holiday  I  will  never   both  Ivo  and  I,  and  the  entire   forget,  and  I  look  forward  to   Andova  family.    What  I  loved   repeating  this  experience  again   about  this  celebration  was  that,   next  year.   other  than  it  being  on  the  day  of     American  Christmas,  there  was     nothing  very  American  about  it.   During  the  beautifully  arranged     dinner,  we  ate  ajvar,  traditional   Macedonian  bread,  and  any     number  of  traditional     Macedonian  foods.    We  drank   great  wine  and  talked  in  a  mix  of   Sean  &    I   Macedonian  and  English  and   listened  to  hours  of  traditional     Macedonian  music.    It  was     Sean  and  I   wonderful  and  just  enough  like   Christmas  back  home  to  assuage   My  s  econd  Christmas  was  spent   my  homesickness,  but  different   with  my  host  family  in  Lipkovo,   enough  for  me  to  enjoy  the   near  Kumanovo.    My  host  family   novelty  of  the  scene  in  which  I   is  Albanian  and  therefore  this   was  a  part.       Christmas  celebration  was  what   I  would  call  Christmassy.    I  spent   the  evening  with  my  host  sister   and  cousins  making  Christmas   cookies,  and  then  eating  them.    

The Andova  family  and  me  

Macedonian,  not  being  the   primary  language  I  communicate   with  in  Macedonia,  I  found   myself  working  hard  to   understand  the  conversation  and    

My  cousins  and  host  sister      

(Continues on  page  5)  






Then I  presented  each  of  my   relatives  with  a  little  thoughtful   gift:  a  small  Santa  wreath  to  my   host  mom  and  brightly  colored   nail  polishes  to  all  my  female   relatives.    Mostly,  this  Christmas   celebration  was  spent  in   conversation  with  my  family,   enjoying  their  company,  and   drinking  Turkish  çai.    We  talked   about  religion  in  my  family,   whether  or  not  I  am  missing  my   relatives,  and  me  being  happy   here  in  Macedonia.    My  host   family  was  worried  that  I  would   be  unhappy  in  Macedonia  during   the  holidays  and  despite  their   not  celebrating  Christmas  as  a   traditional  Muslim  family,  made  

every effort  to  make  me  feel  at   home  and  loved.    They  even   surprised  me  with  a  few  little   gifts  of  my  own-­‐-­‐a  scarf  and  a   pair  of  sparkly  earrings.  They   kept  me  well  fed  with  sarma  and   other  tasty  foods.    


My host  parents,  cousin  and  me  

There   was  no  wine,  there  were   no  pork  products,  and  there  was    

no snow,  but  I  felt  very   welcomed,  loved  and  a  part  of   the  family:  the  whole  point  of  a   Christmas  celebration.     I  feel  as  though  I  am  truly   blessed  in  my  situation,  with   both  my  host  family,  and  my   extended  Macedonian  family  in   Skopje.    Though  my  Christmas   holiday  was  unconventional  by   American  standards,  I  wouldn’t   change  it  for  any  ticket  to  the   States.    It  was  an  eye-­‐opening   experience  to  realize  that  you   need  not  be  among  people   related  to  you  by  blood  in  order   to  find  people  who  love  you  and   want  you  to  feel  at  home.      

Updates from  Campus  

Coordinator Corner    

Tyler  Wasson,  PCMI  Coordinator    

    It  has  already  been  a  cold  winter  and  our  ESL  students  are  shocked  by  it.       MA  TESL  and  ESL  Assistant  Professor  Ron  Harris  retired  last  year  and  we     held  a  retirement  party  for  him  on  the  same  day  as  an  event  celebrating     35  years  of  the  ELC  and  15  years  of  the  MA  TESL  program.           Our  original  5-­‐year  Memorandum  of  Understanding  with  the  PCMI       program  has  been  renewed.  Currently,  we  have  4  pre-­‐service  PCMI     students  –  one  of  which,  Kate  Barba,  left  for  Ecuador  in  January.     Our   December  2013  FFF  was  the  largest  we  have  had  in  a  long  time,  it     featured  presentations  from  5  graduating  MA  TESL  students.         We  remain  highly  connected  with  the  Returned  Peace  Corps  Volunteers   Peace       in  Spokane,  and  I  was  named  President  of  the  Inland  Northwest   Corps  Association  for  the  2014  calendar  year.              

Kate Barba  left  for  Peace   Corps  service  in  Ecuador   mid-­‐January.    

Britt Harmon  is  the  new   editor  for  The  Global   Bulldog  starting  March   2014.     Stephanie  Dempsey-­‐ Kalawe  has  extended  her   Peace  Corps  service  and   will  be  staying  another   year  in  Malawi.          





Teaching English  in  Malawi   Stephanie  Dempsey-­Kalawe,  PCV  Malawi  

During the  2013-­‐14  school  year-­‐ my     third  year  as  a  volunteer,  I   decided  to  concentrate  mostly   on  teaching  English  since  my   goal  after  graduating  is  to  teach   English  as  Second  Language  in   primary  school  classrooms.   Along  with  my  regular  co-­‐ teaching  in  primary  school   classrooms,  I  was  fortunate  to   start  an  English  Club  to  support   students  who  need  further   guidance  at  my  base  school  and   complete  a  series  of   observations  to  use  as  the   subject  of  one  of  my  continuous   development  workshops.    

Club. It  meets  twice  a  week  after     school,  not  to  interfere  with  their   already  packed  curriculum.  The   English  Club  allows  for  extended   class  time  and  more  individual   assistance.  Class  periods  are  35   minutes  and  class  sizes  average   150  per  class.  During  English   Club,  learners  receive  assistance   in  basic  English  skills,  which  are   not  focused  on  during  regular   English  classes  for  students  in   grades  fifth  through  eighth.    

English  Club   Throughout  my  service,  I  have   taught  standards,  fifth  through   eighth  grades.  In  these  levels,   teachers  are  required  to  conduct   all  their  lessons  in  English  only   except  for  during  their  native   vernacular  class,  Chichewa.   However,  in  grades  first  through   fourth  the  students  in  Malawian   Primary  Schools  have  their   lessons  in  their  first  language,   Chichewa,  aside  from  English   class  (which  is  taught  in   English).  Unfortunately,  many   students  struggle  with   functioning  in  English-­‐only   classes  in  grades  fifth  through   eighth.  To  assist  students  with   the  vocabulary  and  grammatical   structures  that  teachers  don’t   have  time  to  go  back  and  review   extensively,  I  began  the  English            

A  classroom  in  Malawi     Since  the  club  is  on  a  volunteer   basis,  it  allows  for  a  smaller  class   size.  As  a  result,  I  am  able  to  use   a  learner-­‐centered  approach.  At   the  beginning  of  the  Club   session,  I  teach  a  basic  skill  to   the  whole  group  and  then  split   them  into  smaller  groups  to   practice  the  same  topics.  There   are  collaborative  as  well  as   individual  exercises  and  lots  of   repetition.  The  students  learn   vocabulary  from  magazine   pictures,  conduct  listening   activities  from  a  voice  recorder   and  practice  reading  and     speaking  using  a  laptop  that  was     donated  by  a  Canadian  traveler.          


By the  end  of  the  school  year,  my   goal  is  to  help  the  consistent   participants  to  improve  their   basic  understanding  of  English   and  be  able  to  function  better  in   English  in  their  classes  at  school.      

Teachers to  Teachers:   Techniques  for  Teaching   English   After  observing  second,  fourth,   fifth,  seventh  and  eighth  grade   English  classes  in  some  of  the   local  schools,  I  designed  a   training  workshop  based  on  the   topics  which  drew  most  concern   for  teachers.  I  also  included   some  teaching  techniques  that   could  be  used  in  addition  to  the   techniques  currently  used  within   the  classroom.   The  workshop  began  with  a   gallery  walk  of  different  teaching   techniques.  Of  those  that  were   demonstrated,  some  they  had   learned  about  in  college  and   others  are  often  used  in   American  classrooms.  The   techniques  I  showcased  were:   scaffolding,  pre-­‐teaching   vocabulary,  alternative  ways  of   assessing  students,  think-­‐pair-­‐ share,  and  guided  practice.  The   participants  had  to  read  a  short   passage  explaining  each   technique  and  then  decide  which   three  would  be  most  useful  for   their  classrooms.  I  found  this   approach  helpful  because  I  had   so  many  techniques  to  share.     (Continues  on  page  7)  



If I  had  chosen  a  lecture  style,  it   may  have  been  boring  for  my   participants.  After  reading  about   the  different  techniques,  the   teachers  chose  their  top  three   preferences.  Then  in  small   groups,  came  up  with  the  top   three  teaching  strategies  they   would  use  in  their  classroom.     We  then  repeated  the  same   activity  as  a  whole  group.  The   top  three  teaching  techniques   chosen  by  the  whole  group  were:   think-­‐pair-­‐share,  guided   practice,  and  scaffolding.  

teaching techniques  they  learned   in  this  workshop  along  with   strategies  they  already  knew  to   collaborate  the  best  way  to  plan   for  the  given  lesson.    Often   teachers  are  hesitant  to  plan   ahead  for  lessons  due  to  time   constraints  and  an   overwhelming  class  load.  This   activity  gave  them  some  simple   ideas  for  preparation  and   execution  of  their  English   lessons.  

words into  Chichewa,  the  local   language.    At  the  end     of  the  activity,  they  were  given  a   worksheet  on  eight  ways  to   teach  a  word  and  we  discussed   how  each  one  could  work  in  the   classroom,  so  they  could  then   share  with  their  classes  at  their   various  schools.  

The second  part  of  the  workshop   included  an  exchange  between   colleagues.  Teachers  don’t   always  get  a  chance  to   collaborate  or  share  what  they   do  in  class  from  day  to  day  with   others  who  are  teaching  the   same  subjects.  So  small  groups   discussed  how  they  approached   different  topics  in  English   classes,  such  as  reading   comprehension,  composition   writing,  vocabulary  acquisition,   and  grammar.  This  activity   helped  the  teachers  to  exchange   ideas  that  have  worked  in  their   classrooms.    I  called  this  activity   “Iron  Sharpens  Iron.”     We  also  focused  on  how  to   prepare  for  class.  In  this  activity     the  teachers  had  to  take  a   sample  lesson  plan  and  decide   how  they  would  plan  for  that   particular  lesson.  They  used  the      


Some of  the  participating  teachers  

Finally,  we  focused  on   vocabulary  acquisition.  Teachers   were  shown  different  ways  to   teach  a  vocabulary  word.  Each   small  group  was  given  an  activity   to  teach  the  whole  group.  First   they  had  to  understand  it   amongst  themselves  and  teach   the  words  to  the  class.  One  small     group  had  the  words  door,  chair,   and  window.  They  drew  pictures   of  the  words,  pointed  to  the     actual  objects  and  asked   participants  to  translate  the    


I am  learning  so  much  from  both   my  English  Club  and  the  teaching   workshops.  I  am  looking  forward   to  seeing  the  improvements  in   the  schools  and  the  students  I   work  with  here  in  the  Niewa   Zone,  Malawi.  

At the  end  of  the  workshop,  the   teachers  provided  their  feedback   and  were  given  an  assignment.   The  attending  teachers  would   have  to  re-­‐teach  what  they   learned  about  teaching  English   to  their  colleagues  in  the  form  of   their  own  workshop  at  their  own   schools.  They  would  be   responsible  for  organizing  and   engaging  the  teachers  at  their   school  based  on  what  they   learned.  So  far,  one  teacher  who   participated  in  my  workshop  has   invited  me  to  their  follow-­‐up   workshop.  This  school  term  I   will  spend  time  observing  the   follow-­‐up  workshops.  Through   these  activities  the  teachers  are   learning  that  the  way  primary   schools  in  Malawi  will  improve  is   if  the  teachers  take  ownership  of   their  own  learning  and  that  of   their  students.    





Upcoming Campus  Events  

        Spokane  Regional  ESL  Conference                                              Feb.    22,  2014  8  a.m.-­‐4  p.m.                                                        Mukogawa   Fort  Wright  Institute     .       Peace  Corps  Week                                    Feb.  23-­‐March  1,  2014                                                                           Peace  Corps  Week  at  Gonzaga                                                              Feb.  27,  2014  5  p.m.  -­‐6  p.m.                                                                                                                                    Crosby  Hall       Peace  Corps  Panel  Discussion                                  Feb.  25,  2014  12  p.m.  -­‐1  p.m.                                                                                                                          Collage  Hall       Peace  Corps  Visits  Gonzaga                                Feb.  27,  2014  9  a.m.-­‐4p.m.                                                                                                                            Crosby  Hall                                          March  9,  2014    9  a.m.  -­‐4  p.m.                                           First  Friday  Forum                                                                                              The  first  Friday  of  every  month                                                                    Schoenberg  Rm201           Visit  for  more  information  on  Peace  Corps  visits  to  Gonzaga     campus                                                                                                                                

Contact Information  


Stephanie Dempsey,  PCV   Peace  Corps     P.O.  Box  208   Lilongwe,  Malawi,  Africa  

Zach Wegner,  PCV   Peace  Corps  Samoa   Private  mailbag   Apia,  Western  Samoa,  South  Pacific     General  Information   (509)  313-­‐6560  

Cheyanne Greer,  PCV     C.P.  31  Maxixe   Inhambane  Province,  Mozambique   Britt  Harmon,  PCV  

Tyler Wasson   (509)  313-­‐5593  

35 E  30th  Ave.  Spokane,  WA  99203  

Melissa Heid   (509)  313-­‐6560  

Frances Peterson,  PCV   Cuerpo  de  Paz   162  Chaco  Boreal  c/Mcal.  López   Asunción  1580,  Paraguay   South  America     Amanda  Walsh,  PCV   BP  31   Adeta,  Togo,  West  Africa      

James Hunter   (509)  313-­‐6564     Please  share  your  ideas,  events  and  articles         for  our  next  newsletter.   Email:      




The Global Bulldog #3  
The Global Bulldog #3  

Winter/Spring 2014