- Time is certainly closing in on us and with sixteen days left in Egypt, it is the perfect time to reflect on all that has happened in this wonderfully eventful year.
- I definitely used the cooler weather as the impetus to get out and about to see as many sights as I could. My somewhat lengthy list of Must Sees in Egypt is slowly diminishing. Unfortunately, there will never be enough time to see everything I want to experience. I've recently traveled to Fayoum and spent a weekend in the quaint little pottery laden village of Tunis. It was the perfect blend of green space and a touch of shopping! And a visit to whale valley appealed to my sense of finding out more about hundreds of fossils of some of the earliest forms of whales. It was so much fun to go dune-bashing in a 4-WD and I loved encountering some very interesting fossilised mangroves.
|Lazib Inn - a gem!|
|UNESCO World Heritage Site - Wadi Al Hitan|
- It was a somber experience to visit the WWII site at El Alamein where my grandfather fought. At the beautifully maintained Commonwealth war cemetery, I found the gravesites of seven men who fought alongside him in his 9th division - 2/2 machine gun battalion. I was eternally grateful that he was one of the fortunate ones who made it safely home from Egypt to Australia.
- I've hosted four more sets of visitors and taken a week-long break to Cappadocia and Istanbul with the first group. The second lot of visitors were kindred shoppers, so we hit the streets of Cairo on my days off and whilst I was working, they capably managed a hectic sightseeing schedule without me. Having me living and working in Egypt this year has been of huge interest to various friends and family from all over the globe. Trillian has the perfect sized apartment for hosting visitors and living in a very walkable area has been appreciated by my international guests.
- As we motor through the final part of the school year I am at ease with all that is happening in our Pre-K learning environment. The children have recently explored a lovely kite-making project and they have thoroughly enjoyed the change of season. Spending time outdoors has led to many opportunities to learn about Spring and now Summer. The CAC campus is really pretty and the children embrace the joys of developing their self-management skills as well as their social skills in such an engaging and interactive environment.
- In February I relished the chance to attend a conference at the Australian International School in Singapore where Fiona Zinn challenged and confirmed my beliefs about the role of documentation in early childhood education. Some of the biggest takeaways for me:
- The thing that separates pedagogical documentation from other forms of observation and record keeping is the use of analysis and reflection.
- Moving always towards offering a pedagogy of play for Under 8's is paramount. It's their right, after all.
- Documentation is in fact data.... it can be mixed media data - quantitative and qualitative - hence, it can be multi-modal.
- Documentation is a team sport!
- And, to finish, something very close to my own heart - she made a plea to all of us at the conference... to embrace and honour moments of surprise and wonder brought to us by the children each and every day.
|Fiona Zinn workshop - the best kind of PD|