I volunteered as a teacher in Armenia for two months. My placement as a volunteer teacher was organized by AVC. AVC secured placement for me with the Children of Armenia Fund which in turn organized teaching for me at two rural schools: one in Lernagog, where I taught Creative Writing with English; the other in Hatsik School, where I taught English. My teaching experience at these schools was very rewarding. I had one session a week with each group.
The students at Lernagog were 14-16 year olds and all of them quite eager to practise writing creatively and to improve their written and spoken English. In our sessions we worked on producing creative text – mainly prose fiction – as well as working on using English grammar correctly in written work.
By contrast, the learners at Hatsik School were all adults. They were all teachers who taught in Hatsik School. Our lessons took place after their working day and, despite how demanding a long day’s teaching may have been for them, they still participated and contributed positively in all of the sessions we had together. The classes were always lively, full of humour and learning.
Overall, I am quite pleased with my experience as a volunteer and very grateful for the opportunity. On those days that I was not volunteering, I spent most of my time touring around Armenia on my bike either on my own or with a group of other cyclists. I really enjoyed doing this as it enabled me to see much more of Armenia than I would have if I had gone sightseeing in a car and it also made it possible for me create a new network friends in Armenia that shared a common interest in cycle touring.
These trips and new associations made it all the more easy and enjoyable for me integrate into Armenian culture and society and left me with experiences and opportunities. I will never forget and would hope to return to again in the near future.