2010.04.13: Adam Maines is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola in Malawi

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Malawi: Peace Corps Malawi : Peace Corps Malawi: Newest Stories: 2010.04.13: Adam Maines is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola in Malawi

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Adam Maines is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola in Malawi

Adam Maines is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola in Malawi

Both Muslims and Christians live in Malawi. Everyone goes to church, which is a big part of their social culture. Many rural schools are sponsored by churches. Some city and rural schools are government- sponsored. Students enjoy school and do not like having days off for holidays or school breaks. Teachers are in demand. Adam's class sizes vary from 16 students to 50. Some elementary classes have up to 200 or more students with only one teacher, but there are few discipline problems, he said. There are approximately 140 Peace Corps volunteers in Malawi, with normally one volunteer per school. Maines participated in Camp Sky 2009, a camp set up in Lilongwe, the capital city. Each teacher selected two students to attend the camp. Most had never traveled that far from home. There students learned things not offered at their schools. A computer lab was set up and students went on several field trips, including the airport and the site where the old dictator had lived. Malawi is now a democracy.

Adam Maines is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola in Malawi

Clyde graduate helping Malawi modernize

April 13, 2010

By Jeanette Liebold-Ricker

Adam Maines, a 1999 Clyde High School graduate, is serving with the Peace Corps in Malawi, in southeastern Africa. Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world and is among the world's least developed and most densely populated countries, with 85 percent of its people living in rural areas where agriculture is the chief economy.

Maines' assignment there is teaching high school-level math and physical science at St. Bridget's Secondary Day School in the village of Natola. The school is sponsored by the Catholic Namitembo Mission, which is 11 kilometers away from his village where he lives in a three-room house near the school. Maines visits the mission once or twice a week, where British and other nationalities live. The Internet is available at the mission and he can use their electricity to charge his cell phone.

Western food is eaten at the mission. In his village, Maines' main diet is nsima, a thick, starchy, cornmeal-based dish, rice vegetables, pumpkin and eggs. He has no running water. Meals are cooked outside over an open fire. Just last week electricity was installed in his home, which is heated by solar panels.

Maines has found that the natives there are very friendly people. If he needs anything done, they drop whatever they are doing to help him. Their pace of living is slower than ours and he has time for reading and simply sitting on his porch.

A 10-speed bike is used for transportation, giving him plenty of exercise. He is 17 kilometers from the nearest paved road. In a recent two-day period, he rode 40 miles.

During his time off from school, he travels around the rest of the country, sightseeing and visiting other volunteers, who are within an hour's bike ride.

Both Muslims and Christians live in Malawi. Everyone goes to church, which is a big part of their social culture. Many rural schools are sponsored by churches. Some city and rural schools are government- sponsored. Students enjoy school and do not like having days off for holidays or school breaks. Teachers are in demand. Adam's class sizes vary from 16 students to 50. Some elementary classes have up to 200 or more students with only one teacher, but there are few discipline problems, he said.

There are approximately 140 Peace Corps volunteers in Malawi, with normally one volunteer per school.

Maines participated in Camp Sky 2009, a camp set up in Lilongwe, the capital city. Each teacher selected two students to attend the camp. Most had never traveled that far from home. There students learned things not offered at their schools. A computer lab was set up and students went on several field trips, including the airport and the site where the old dictator had lived. Malawi is now a democracy.

Maines parents, Don and Vickie, often send him care packages containing chocolate M&Ms and Reeses Pieces, which he shares with his students. For many, it was the first time they had tasted chocolate.

Maines said applying for the Peace Corps was a lengthy process. He was accepted in September 2008 for a 27-month commitment, which will be completed in December.

After his basic training, he spent six weeks living with a host family where he learned the customs and language of the country.

Then he had another three-week training period learning about teaching and other necessary things to adapt to the country.

Maines is a 2005 Bowling Green State University graduate and had worked as a software developer for a contract company for the Illinois Revenue Department.
MEMBERSHIP MEETING

The Clyde Heritage League will have its annual membership meeting at 1:30 pm Sunday at the Clyde Public Library, 222 W. Buckeye St. A brief business meeting will be held and annual reports will be given.

Election of trustees will take place and the Heritage Award will be presented. New and renewing members are welcome. The annual dues are $5 and can be paid then. Refreshments will be served.

Members will then adjourn to walk the halls of Vine Street Elementary and McPherson Middle schools, which will be closing at the end of the school year.

The Heritage League will also be set up at the schools to record the school memories of visitors that day.





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Headlines: April, 2010; Peace Corps Malawi; Directory of Malawi RPCVs; Messages and Announcements for Malawi RPCVs; Secondary Education; Science





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Story Source: The News Messenger

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Malawi; Secondary Education; Science

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