Month: October 2016


This was the first Trick-Or-Treat event for the students at Sami Frasher High School. They were excited, crazy, and out of control! They thanked me for the fun experience and I thanked them for participating. For me, I was stressed and tired by the end of the day because I had to tell these students to stay calm in the hallway and made sure they were going to the right classroom. Sometimes they were rebellious and walked away but I made sure they were kept in line. We started off really loud, because why not? Trick or Treating is suppose to be fun and obnoxious! But the vice-principal spotted us and said we should do this after school because the kids were being loud. With my broken Albanian, I tried to explain our process but she gave up and let us continue.

There were problems with the school staff. They found this to be very annoying because the students were being rambunctious, and no matter how hard I try to get them to remain calm, they just couldn’t! Some of the teachers really enjoyed it and supported me while the others told me that they should do this after lesson. Sorry but not sorry, I won’t be doing this after lesson because everyone will be going home by the time all lessons are finished. My counterpart helped me out and let the staff understand that this was part of our lesson and students should experience this. It is not every year that they can go Trick-Or-Treating. Our school director felt really appreciated for what I did for the students. He was truly pleased despite the students being loud.

How did I coordinate this? For each class that I taught English with, I picked one trusting student a bag of candies. I instructed the student carefully in Albanian, to give each trick-or-treaters one candy per student. For the trick-or-treaters, I told them to knock on the door and not to open it but wait for a student from the other end to open. When the door is open, they should shout out “TRICK OR TREAT!!!” Most followed my instruction while the others were terribly wacky and did not pay enough attention.

All in all, I thought this was fun and worth it. All the pocket money spending and annoyance of getting these students to follow the rule, I don’t regret it and I’m not sorry for the teachers who take their job so seriously. This is 2016 and it’s time to open up to new and different culture. I want students to have a fun and new experience because it’s not every year they can do to this. This is something that they can share to their friends and family and keeping such fun memories from their school…until my service end.

I mainly do this for the kids who lives in villages and especially for the girls who are not allowed to go out at night. Girls deserve to have fun just as much as boys do, so I know this is the only opportunity for them and one shot at creating this experience myself!

….and Happy Halloween!


Connecting students

One of my student come to my cave to Skype with my roommate’s student from Palestine. That’s four degrees apart, from me to my student to my roommate to her student. It was an interesting and enjoyable experience. They asked about the differences between their life, country, school, and such. My roommate and I brought up the idea that a student from Albania could connect with a student from another country. It was an eye-opening experience for both students because living in a village life or a small town, this was a great opportunity for them to integrate with the world…..virtually.


Pumpkin carving and Arabic learning

A friend of mine came to my classroom to speak about her life and the country where she worked at. It was interesting to students when she was teaching some Arabic. The way she wrote Arabic phrases on the white board and each of the students’ names, they were truly fascinated.  She walked around the classroom to see if students can write from right to left. I’m glad that students enjoyed this.

For the next class, one student carved out a pumpkin while the others were taking pictures of him carving it. Meanwhile, I was showing, mostly the female students, plastic lace stitching. A few students were so fascinated by it that I let them finish my project. A few were able to follow the steps of the stitch, so I had one of them explain it to their classmates.


A student brought a pumpkin to the classroom! Apparently she has a small pumpkin farm! There will be a pumpkin carve in the near future before Halloween! I’m excited to make this as Belsh’s first Halloween.


What can you eat with a pumpkin in Albania? There is a Byrek Me Kungull, which is a pumpkin pie pastry. Very few cities make this because it is not popular as Byrek Me Gjiz (cheese curds pie)

kungull – pumpkin

Halloween Door Decoration

I want to spread the Halloween spirit in the school regardless of anyone thinking I’m an anti-christ. I decorated doors for students’ homeroom. Many enjoyed it!

For my personal classroom, I decorated the door with some Halloween decoration. A lot of the students were impressed and took pictures as well. It may not be extravagant as decorations in the states, but it is something that students can experience something different in their lifetime.

I would say I’m pretty proud of my accomplishment so far and I think this will be Belsh’s first Halloween!

Albanian of the day:

shtrig  – witch

rreng ose qeras – Trick or Treat


The little girl in the furgon

I was in a furgon heading home. There was a seat in front of me, sat by a little girl. She could be 3 or 4 years old, but she was adorable. She had short blonde hair and dressed in pink. Generally, I don’t play with kids but this girl was staring at me. I smiled at her and she smiled back. I gave her my hand and she grabbed it and we both shook hands. Then, I started to play peek-a-boo, giving high fives, making silly faces, and pretending to grab her from my seat. All of those games, she laughed a lot. Then I started to mirror her for whatever she was doing, like pushing her hair back, touching her face, I reflected that back to her. She finally noticed it and laughed. It fascinated me that such simple act like this could make a child laugh. She didn’t judge me by my look, and maybe she’s unaware of who I am. We didn’t talk until it was time for her to get off the furgon. When we parted, she said “Bye bye!” and I said bye to her back, then she waved farewell at me from outside. It nearly impressed me that she spoke English! What a sweet little girl!

The bread making experience/Starting of Halloween door design

I had the opportunity to watch shop owners bake bread by using baking machines, big mixers, and different process on how it’s made. They start baking early in the morning, around 4-5 am, but I was lucky enough to watch another process before I walk to work. It was interesting and fun to watch. I thanked the shop owner.

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