Category: Education

Winter Musings 2017

Winter Musings 2017

I will not call this my Christmas letter or epistle or whatever. I am just sitting here on a Sunday night thinking that I should really probably be writing something. There is this interesting phenomena that I have noticed happening when you disconnect from people. When you are in the immediate circle of intimacy with …

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On Secondary Education: Why It is Broken

On Secondary Education: Why It is Broken

I am sitting in one of the dark classrooms at one of the schools I teach at in Riga, Latvia pondering why one of my students said that they would like to see the school burn down. What are we doing to make high school students feel so demotivated and even angry at the system? …

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Feeling Safe

Feeling Safe

Drošība un Miers 28.9.17 Safety and Peace… I wanted to write a quick follow-up to my post yesterday about the vacation being over. I want to make sure that no one misunderstands my collection of mishaps and woes as a general reflection of my mood. Yes, there are ups and downs, as there always are …

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The Vacation is Over

The Vacation is Over

Nav Brīvdienas 26.9.17 Yes, it is true. This is not a vacation. This is not a trip. This is real life! After three weeks of being a Latvian worker, doing the daily commute, and getting my ducks in a row, I am exhausted and content at the same time. From my blog posts, one might …

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My Commute and a Language Thing

My Commute and a Language Thing

My goal today was just to post a bunch of photos of my daily commute via bicycle to Gymnasium 2 and RTU. I just want to remain thankful and humble each time I leave in the morning to go to work. I am lucky enough to live right along the river, and it is easy …

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Professor Grīnvalds

Professor Grīnvalds

With only a Master’s degree in English from the lovely and wonderful University of Nebraska-Lincoln, I have landed myself a job as a lecturer at Riga Technical University (RTU). The Mighty Flying Letts of RTU are a traditional powerhouse of the Big Baltic Conference. They are dominant in such sports as Ice Fishing, Feline Trapping, and …

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September 1: First Day of School

September 1: First Day of School

Okay, America, let’s get this right! Latvia makes the first day of school a national celebration. Every public school in the country starts on the same day every year—September 1. And on this day, students walk to school with flowers in hand to give to their teachers. I was excited to see this spectacle, so …

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A Latvian Working Stiff

A Latvian Working Stiff

Darbu 25 August 2017 I am sitting in my old friend, the Beer House having a celebratory IPA and fish and chips while pondering my future here in Latvia. Today I signed a contract for a half-time teaching job at Gymnasium 2 in Riga, Latvia. Rita tells me it is where her heroine, Anna Bērzkalne …

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Where Few Men Have Gone Before

Where Few Men Have Gone Before

LATE This is just a quick post (which has now dragged on for days) to let you know that I am now a card-carrying member of LATE (pronounced like latte (which is not pronounced like matte)). I attended the 25th annual Latvian Association of Teachers of English conference last Thursday and Friday. It was a special …

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CELTA Bootcamp: Behind the Scenes

CELTA Bootcamp: Behind the Scenes

CELTA I feel like I have told some people that I’m doing this CELTA thing, but not many really understand it. Quite frankly, I’m not 100% certain I get it myself, so I’m writing about it to work through and untangle the mystery. According to Cambridge, CELTA stands for “Certification in Teaching English to Speakers …

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