Fortunately, one of my mentors, Rick Yount, wrote a book on Educational Psychology. This is very good because for the second time, AGS has asked me to teach Educational Psychology. Since this is not an area of particular expertise for me, I decided again just to teach Dr. Yount's book. I guess I should have some sense of how to teach the class since it is really an application of psychological principles (I did do all but a final project for a Masters degree in counseling) to education. By using a combination of lecture, case studies, group assignments, and discussion, most of the students were excited about what they got by the end of the week.
This second class was much smaller than the youth ministry class last week. Two of the students from last week were in the class again this week--Dave and Daisy. Both of them were lots of fun in the youth ministry class. Strangely enough, both of them were a bit more subdued (though still fun) this week. Of course, Dave has a tiny baby at home that has to be monitored every 30 minutes. So, in addition to pastoring and schooling, he gets no sleep. Ugh. Hilda works in the school in the library. She is a little older and demonstrated a lot of wisdom. Mary Ann (or just May Ann) is a teacher at a private school on leave. This was her first class. She knows education well and probably could have taught the class. Nevertheless, she loved being a part of the class and is hoping to figure out a way to go to school full-time. Another pastor (whose name I can't recall right now) is involved in pastoring a church, leading a school, and doing several other things in ministry. He was out-spoken and anxious to dig into concepts and issues. On day 2, Chang showed up. He had taken me to church on Sunday. I like him and was glad to see him join the class. Apparently, the idea had occurred to Anne on the first day. Chang (pronounced more like John than a typical Chinese name) is from Nepal. He is gracious and feels most comfortable eating with his hands. He lives in one of the vacant faculty offices at the school. Well, almost vacant. OK, half vacant. Some retired faculty member still has all his books in Chang's bedroom. He was less likely to speak up in class, but so anxious to learn. He tells me that he is already working on making arrangements for me to come to Nepal next year. Fun.
About halfway through the class, I heard a conversation between Dave and some of the other students from Youth Culture.
"So, who did Dr. Paul appoint as Game Master this week?"
"So, who is leading games?"
"We don't have games in this class. Um, this is kind of a serious class."
I wasn't exactly sure how to take his statement, but he was right. The class was a lot more serious. I'm not sure it was by my decision. I suppose you could say that the content was more serious, but I'm not convinced that is entirely true. The room was different. We were meeting around a table in a faculty break room. It felt a bit more like a board room than a free-for-all open classroom. But, I think it had more to do with the personality of the class. As a group--not so much one by one--they were more serious. I've said for some time that classes take on a personality, and they do it pretty rapidly. I'm not convinced it is merely a compilation of the personalities in the class, nor do I think it has so much to do with the class leaders. It's something a little different. I'm not sure how to quantify it and I don't know that I can prove it, but it seems to affect the way I teach. Ha! And I guess that reinforces the personality of the class.
So, Dan Kairo is one of my students from Shekinah Bible College from 2 years ago. He keeps in touch with me. I hear from him at least every week. Not long after I left the Philippines two years ago, he asked if he could call me Dad. And that's what he calls me. I was hoping to see Dan Kairo, but he now serves a church in General Santos City, the site of Shekinah, and I was not going to make a trip down there. Apparently, he wanted to connect with me because, with a little help, he arranged to come up to Manila and spend a few days with me. I guess the whole idea made his dad nervous. He contacted me on Facebook to tell me, "He is my only son." OK, I'll take care of him in the big, bad city.
Kairo arrived on Thursday while I was in class. A friend of his from Shekinah is in school at AGS now, so they kicked around until I got out of class. Was so good to see Kairo. He stayed through the weekend. We didn't do much, but enjoyed kicking around the malls and just hanging out.
On Friday, the class decided on a special gift, a big Filipino feast served on banana leaves and eaten with your hands. Apparently, these Filipinos wanted to be a bit more sanitary, so we ate with latex gloves. Ha. There is rice and fish and rice and chicken adobo and rice and tofu and more rice and more fish and vegetables and...well, more rice. It was not just good eating, but it was a lot of fun sharing it with the class.
On Sunday, Kairo and I went with Anne to her son's church in Angeles City. I hadn't seen Miko in at least 4 years and maybe 6. He is no longer a kid. He is the youth minister at the church, but since they have no other pastor, Miko does everything. The service was mostly in Tagalog, so I didn't understand a lot. Kairo helped translate...a little. Sort of forget your old Dad when he doesn't understand, eh? Miko preached in Tanglish...a mix-mash of English and Tagalog. I told him that it was like the Book of Acts all over again. I'd be listening to some unintelligible language and suddenly the Holy Spirit would open my ears...at least for a few words. We ate at a local place for lunch. Sisig, which is mostly fried pig fat, a really good sour soup, and a chicken dish that I really liked.
Tomorrow Kairo and I head to the airport at crazy early in the morning. Kairo's flight leaves at 4 a.m. and mine at 5 a.m. Yikes.