This past weekend I had the opportunity to explore the capital city of Czech Republic, Prague. I attempted to capture all of the history & magic through photographs, but I think it would be best if you just added it to your bucket list [& take me with you].
naturally, the first stop was lunch [baked goat cheese salad]
*after our Uber from the airport to the hostel broke down*
happily enjoying a beer for $1.03 [25 czk] in front of the oldest working astronomical clock
views from the Charles Bridge [+ me]
left my mark on the John Lennon wall & had a mini photo session
St. Vitrus Cathedral on the grounds of the castle
*for the record the cathedral looks more castle than the castle*
last attempts at capturing the beauty of the city
~spring break inspiration~
This post may lack food for thought but this city did not, especially in the food department.
I had the opportunity to spend some time in two Onderbouw classrooms at the Montessori school. This group of students range from the ages of four to six. Typically, not the age group I gravitate toward.
A little bit of my preconceived [mostly wrong] notions about these little friends
- They are adorable
- They cry a little too easily
- They don’t realize when their nose is running
- They don’t understand my preferred communication – sarcasm
- I don’t have enough patience
The literal translation of Onderbouw is foundation or base and these students are truly receiving a foundational or base centered curriculum. I feel extremely lucky to have the opportunity to learn from teachers and an administration that seem to have found a relatively realistic balance between meeting standards set by the government and, for lack of a better term, allowing kids to be kids. A montessori school naturally lends itself to a more independent, child directed, education but I can’t help think some of these techniques would be refreshing in general education classrooms in The States. It’s important for these students, especially at their young age, to be able to explore their own learning and cultivate their innate curiosity. So much learning can come out of “play” and of late it’s easy to get caught up in a strictly teacher centered classroom. I’m happy to admit I was wrong and pleasantly surprised by the growth of the students and myself.
A little bit of what I have learned, specifically, about these children:
- They are adorable
- They might cry
- They are independent
- They are problem solvers
- They are energizing
- They are curious
- They are loving
- They are tough
- They are teachers
**Verdicts still out on the runny noses, language barriers are minimal, I do have patience**
Left a little piece of me in Amsterdam last weekend & took away a little inspiration.
I’ve always said the most attractive quality is passion. The love of love here is contagious. I am an optimistic person to begin with [sometimes to a fault] but the simple yet intense passion of daily life given off by every person I’ve encountered is intriguing. They keep saying it’s the sprinkles on everything (literally, everything) but I think it’s their understanding of a slower paced purposeful lifestyle.
Contrary to a slower paced purposeful lifestyle, heres a little outline of my fast paced purposeful weekend in one of my new favorite cities:
+toured the Anne Frank House
+wandered beautiful canals + streets
+shopped small boutiques & markets
+ate at quaint cafes
+celebrated the beginning of my 24rd year of life
+saw Disclosure at the Heineken Music Hall
+toured the Heineken Brewery [& got a cliché personalized bottle]
Doei voor nu – Bye for now
Hallo, it’s me, typing to you from my Roompot
resort Campsite kitchen table. I’ve decided I would attempt this blogging business and who knows, maybe start getting paid to create a travel blog? A girl can dream.
This month I have the incredible opportunity to student teach in the Netherlands and I’d love to share some daily happenings in the Montessori classroom as well as pictures of canals, bikes, food, a little wine, and sometimes my face.
I couldn’t wrap my head around sitting in front of my computer the very first week I was in my new city so here is a quick recap:
- Arrive at DFW Airport to find my flight has been canceled (casual)
- Immediately (shocking) placed on a British Airways flight to Amsterdam
*Que chips, queso, & beer*
- Arrive in London to
jog run to my connecting flight to Amsterdam
- Walk directly onto the plane to my seat and wipe the sweat from my forehead
- Fall asleep prior to take off
- Meet up with the 9 other wonderful ladies teaching, traveling, and dealing with me for the next month
- Arrive at Roompot
Resort Campsite in The Hague, have my first encounter with a Stroop Waffle, & eat an entire bag of Paprika chips
- Successfully make our way to The University of The Hague via bus 26
- Our hosts, Sigrid & Peter, led us on a tour of the University including a delicious lunch in their restaurant quality cafe
- Mary and I made our way to our school for the next three weeks; Montessorischool Valkenbos
- Explored the city of The Hague & inevitably did some shopping
- Mary and I walk the beach home.
*Who knew I would voluntarily walk the beach in 45 degree weather with 30 mph winds and enjoy it? I definitely did not.*
- Apparently every school gets out at 12 on Wednesdays? (I don’t hate it)
- Took a day trip to Delft
- Climbed an old church and its 500+ steps to a gorgeous view overlooking all of Delft
- Ate the most delicious cheese samples I’ve ever had in my life
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday were a whirlwind getting to know the students, teachers, and administration in the absolutely incredible school. On Tuesday and Wednesday we were in a classroom that has students from 10-12 years of age and Thursday we were in a classroom next door that had students from 4-6 years of age. I took away four key observations during these three days:
- The relationships between teacher and student is something out of a picture book.
- The students are independent, problem solving, driven individuals.
- The student is the center of the education system (as they should be)
- Snacks are a big deal here
I could really get used to this lifestyle.
Tot Morgen – Until tomorrow
*thanks for reading Mom xo*