Friday, May 12, 2006

Yes and Yes; Second Part!

For all of you who have never stayed in an Asian country, my last post might have been a little bit strange. Let me just illustrate it with one more example:

This week, I was again teaching a session in the lab. First thing that you'd like to do is to make sure that everybody is able to log in. Because two or even three students have to share a computer, you cannot detect whether everybody is able to log in by just looking at the screens. So in the European context I would ask 'who has problems logging in?' and would probably get a fairly accurate answer. Asking this question here in Bhutan is rather silly. Ok, you might think that some of the students are just shy and asking them face-to-face might help. It helped a little bit (reformulating the question over and over again) and I discovered maybe four students that have forgotten their password. Checking with every student face-to-face took a bit of time; but I'm pretty sure that at least two of the students forgot their password but they didn't tell me. I tried to formulate the question in every possible way - but somehow it didn't help.

It is really good that I'm teaching that class. I learn so many things that you learn only by doing; if you don't have to interact on this level, then you just simply don't discover how it works. The experiences that I'm making in that class help me a lot to understand in a better way what is going on in the other parts that I'm working on. As I mentioned in the last post, it is a great learning experience and I'm really happy that I have the possibility to get in contact with all the folks here in Samtse!!

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