An Essay By Ben // 2/9/2000

Dear Homeschooling Friends,

It feels like a lot has happened these past few days. I'm not sure why. Do you ever get that feeling? I could write about a lot of things on my mind, but I don't have the patience or the time, and neither would you to read all my current thoughts. :-)

I don't know what you're doing on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 12:30pm, but I'm just getting to my Spanish class. My Spanish teacher really likes my class because there are so few of us--10 total. Her other class has something like 30. But, although our class is so small, it's an interesting experience to attend Spanish class. We're such a mix! Our class has a Haitian-American girl, Valerie, who is always chattering away and laughing at herself--she's really funny to talk to--an Israeli girl, Sophy, who stands less than 4-feet tall--very friendly--and a Jamaican boy, Raycho. That's three international students out of 10 total! There are three girls and a boy who don't talk much, but are friendly. Then, there is a girl, Nancy, who, like me, is a dual enrollment student at Framingham State College. Finally, there's a girl named Azizi (I guess that's how it's spelled). Isn't that a great name?

I really enjoy watching how these different types of people interact with each other, as well as joining in the fun myself. Our class really gets into learning the Spanish, too, especially Valerie, who can be heard repeating every word the teacher says and laughing at her own mispronunciations.

But, I haven't said anything about my teacher yet! If you add her into this exotic mix, it becomes really funny.... My teacher is the most colorful, fascinating person I have met in a long time. She sits there behind her desk, practically grinning at us behind thick lipstick and frizzled hair as she explains Spanish words to us, her eager pupils. She has a daughter who is getting married soon, so she teaches us Spanish words about marriage, and roses, and buying "regalos" or presents. She does crazy things. When we learned the word "hair dryer" she actually pulled out a hair dryer from her bag and proceeded to plug it in and demonstrate drying her hair in front of the class....

Everything my teacher does seems to give her great pleasure and satisfaction. And, everything she does you can tell is slightly mischievous or with some secret intention. Raycho--the Jamaican boy (I'm eager to write about him as well)--gets a lot of "trash" from our teacher. She takes great joy in asking him if he has a girlfriend, or what he's doing for Valentine's day. Poor Raycho! He'll answer in near-perfect Spanish that he doesn't have a girlfriend and isn't doing anything for Valentine's day. Then, as my teacher gleefully begins her usual moans of pity, Raycho will sneak a glance and a grin in my direction. We both understand that our teacher just enjoys teasing us!

Wow! I already typed this much? I'll just have to write more later, I guess. Until I get the chance to write more, have fun in apricot--

Ben Kniaz


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