The difference between American students and south African students are the motives to learn. The majority of us play to win in the sense that its not about retaining but memorizing enough to pass the test, class, etc. Several South African students I’ve met can recite to me material learned in Form 2 (sophomore year high school) and I can barely remember what my class schedule was last semester. This week has been a whirlwind of papers, deadlines and exams to write. The heat is on! Fourth term is right around the corner and I’ve had more than my share of panic attacks. My truth and reconciliation class will be death of me. In this class we read two books, watch a couple of films and reflect on what this country has gone through during apartheid, post apartheid and the influence of the TRC hearings. It is mentally and emotionally draining, so much this country has (is) going through; passive discussions do not exist here. The stories, the information everything we’re learning does not allow room for complacency, and this is just one of my classes. Jewelry Design has left me in the fetal position more times than not. I’ve burned myself, burned my equipment, and burned the teacher. But I have not ruined any of my work (knock on wood). Xhosa is a world of its own, learning a language, of which you have no reference point, is very VERY difficult. Its also my favorite class. My tutors have turned out to be my kids I volunteer with, teaching me where accents are placed, how to make my tongue move against my teeth, it’s a beautiful thing I tell you! Next on the academic agenda are papers, papers everywhere. Everyone writes their finals in October here, so September is a month full of essays and long long nights in the library. You know the nights where allthewordsonthescreenruntogether. Yea, those nights. I’m looking forward to it.
behold hatred, thy name is finals.
peace. love. grace