I’ve titled this post Odds & Ends because I wanted to blog today, but don’t have a fluid story to tell. This is going to be a lot of random episodes we’ve experienced over the last 2 days.
Here we go-
Yesterday, February 8, Melissa, Catherine, and I cooked with 6th grade in Domestic Science! We had a much more “American meal” this week with our students. I didn’t cook with any one particular group so that I could float around and help where needed. We were served as the main course-scrambled eggs, pancakes, waffles, bacon, macaroni and cheese, buns, and….. liver pâté. I spread a VERY tiny layer of the pâté on my rye bread. It wasn’t what I was expecting and not at all terrible, just something I don’t need to eat again…. But I can say I tried it!
For dessert we had fruit salad, Danish-style! Our students made it with cream and chocolate mixed in with the fruit so that everything was cream covered. It was delicious. The great thing about Kornmod is that in the school we have a fruit stand that is always well stocked. Oh, and it’s completely free. Students take as they wish. We collected apples, plums, oranges, and bananas from it for our fruit salad. ALL the fruit here is so delicious, it ate way too much of the fruit salad. The chocolate kick didn’t hurt.
To do all this cooking, every student brings either the ingredients they need or 20 Kroner and runs across the street to Fakta, one of our local grocery stores. The level of independence students have here is remarkable and wonderful. Jane, our teacher, let’s everyone work to figure out their recipes and cook for themselves. The skole also donated 200 Kroner for our cooking. The students take this money to Fakta, shop, and bring back the change. By themselves.
Ask yourself if this would happen in the States.
The answer is no.
Seeing this in Denmark is extremely refreshing because as a teacher in the States, we don’t trust our students with anything in relation to what we see here. I think about the procedures we have in place to constantly redirect students and make sure everyone walks, in a line, quiet, with a teacher, and it seems crazy. In describing some of the procedures to Jane, she just laughs. The restrictions wouldn’t fly in a Danish school. So much emphasis is put on the freedom of the student. She trusts her students to spend the school’s money as needed and make a pile of change when they get back. And they always do.
Things I learned/heard in the kitchen
~”One waffle is better than zero waffles!!”
~”You’ve never had fruit salad with chocolate?! How do you eat this in America?!”
~7th grade boys don’t count out flour when they measure.
~Danes eat thin pieces of chocolate on toast, buns, and bagels. I DEFINITELY support this.
~Santa is known as The Yule Man in Denmark, which I also wholeheartedly support.
After school we then ventured into Virklund to Anna and Taylor’s skole so that their teacher could take us all to the “optimistically named” Sky Mountain of Silkeborg.
The real name of Sky Mountain is written on the piece of wood in this picture-
Sky Mountain is the highest point in Denmark relative to the land around it. All the local kids laughed when I said I was going to climb Sky Mountain. They quickly told me it’s only about 147 meters tall (482 feet). It stopped raining while we were there and the sky cleared up for some beautiful pictures.
We then climbed down to the bottom for pictures at surface level of the lake-
Big thanks to Anna who brought her TCU flag along for this trip!
Today, February 9th, we sat in on a fully Danish speaking history class! We could follow our students when they were looking at maps of what the world looked like in 1800 compared to today…. After that we just enjoyed hearing the language and watching a normal day. Once skole was over we headed to Jane’s house for a wonderful dinner with her, her husband, and 2 delightful, little sons. It was a pleasure to have a family dinner and be served burgers made by Martin. Her little boys hear their mum speak English to them so they knew a few words to say to us. All in all, it was a great meal. We are very lucky to have Jane to work with while in Silkeborg! We have learned so much already.
Last note-While with Jane we got to tour her boys’ kindergarten, which would be our preschool in the States. When looked in on the infant/toddler side where Jane told us that a major part of bringing up a child in Denmark is that children get to sleep/nap outside. At the kindergarten, babies are bundled up, covered in wool, and pushed outside to sleep.
No matter the weather.
To say the least, I was shocked to hear this. Jane explained that babies do not really get outside because people are afraid to expose them to too much. In Denmark, the outdoors is believed to help in growth and development. When she explained why this is something that happens, it seemed so logical to me. It’s too bad Texas is so hot, I don’t know if this practice is feasible.
Until next post,