D-Day 2014: Durian Tasting

July 23, 2014

Delicious Durian--The King of Fruits

Delicious Durian–The King of Fruits

It’s hard to describe a durian, the “King of Fruits.” It’s prickly on the outside, fleshy on the inside, succulent and stinky all at the same time. You just have to try it.

Looking Over the Durian Stall

Looking Over the Durian Stall

So that’s what we did. We walked up the road from Sri Utama to our favorite durian-seller. Our trusted friend William was there to help us choose well, and, like his mom before him, he always picks a good one!

Mr. Casey gets the camera ready!

Mr. Casey gets the camera ready for the big event!

Mr. Casey, a secondary math teacher and Paige’s cooperating teacher, was so excited by the prospect of watching Americans react to their first taste of durian, that he brought his camera to record the whole episode. He obviously enjoyed the experience, too!

Ready for the D-Day Moment

Ready for the D-Day Moment

Our durian vendor opens a nice, ripe durian… But Amanda and Paige aren’t quite sure what to think of it.

We're ready, we think!

We’re ready, we think!

Amanda, Robin, Mitch, Rachel, Chase and Paige are as ready as they’ll ever be. Mitch is going to be the brave one to go first, as Mr. Casey captures the moment!

Yeah, Mitch!

Yeah, Mitch!

Next, Robin. We know you’ll be telling your friends about this experience long after we’ve gone home!

Robin asks herself, I am really ready for this?

Robin asks herself, I am really ready for this?

Paige and Chase’s turn.  Uh-Oh!

Chase takes a taste while Paige looks on.

Chase takes a taste while Paige looks on.

I guess this face says it all.  Now they have all had the official Malaysian experience!

Ah..... Delicious Durian!

Ah….. Delicious Durian!

 

Makanan (Food, Malaysian Style) 2014

June 30, 2014

You can’t talk bout Malaysia without talking about food.  Malaysian cuisine is as creative, as colorful, and as diverse as the Malaysian people are–not to mention tasty!  But…let’s let the photos do all the talking.

* With Cafe Owner

Ah…. The joys of street food!

* Fried Fish

Fresh fried fish with all the trimmings

* Satay Meal

Satay and Iced Lemon Tea

* 4 at Pewter Factory

Lunch at the Selangor Pewter Factory Cafe with the Sri Utama staff

* Local cuisine

Stopping for a side of the road treat on a hot, steamy night

* Lunch at Dato's

Lunch at Dato’s

* Salmon Salad

Cappucino and Salmon Salad at the Pewter Factory Cafe

* Local Fruit

Local Fruit

* Nasi Lemak

Nasi Lemak – Coconut rice, with chicken rendang, sambal, anchovies, peanuts, egg & cucumber – A breakfast favorite!

* 3 students eating

Student teachers enjoying the long Friday lunch at Selangor Pewter Factory Cafe, across the street from Sri Utama

Steamboat

Steamboat

* Dragonfruit

Dragonfruit

 

Bukit Bintang: The “Star Hill” Section of Kuala Lumpur (February 2014)

June 30, 2014

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You have to visit Bukit Bintang at night.  It’s a busy hot-spot full of locals and visitors bustling between good restaurants and great shops.  This is where the night life is!  So the group took advantage of the weekend to visit the famous Pavillion Mall, still decorated for Chinese New Year.

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Amazing Pavilion Mall

 

We're not in Kansas anymore, Toto!

We’re not in Kansas anymore, Toto!


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P. Ramlee Street is named after a famous Malaysian actor, singer, and director whose movies put Malaysia (and Malaya, its former name) on the map.  There’s always so much going on in Jalan P. Ramlee!  But to get to that section, we had to take the crowded monorail. Watching Chase squeeze his 6’6″ frame into the monorail started us all smiling, and we soon had the whole car giggling with us.  But Chase, as usual, took it in stride.

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No matter where we go, we always seem to end up at the Petronas Towers. At the top of this photo, you can see the famous towers, always a beautiful beacon for everyone in KL.

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Jungle Adventure, February 2014 – Di Dalam Hutan

June 30, 2014

Ok, so it’s been a few months since we’ve been back. We’ve finished the semester and these student teachers have graduated. But we’re all still reminiscing about the adventures that we had just a few short months ago in Malaysia! Here is our story about one hot Saturday afternoon in February, when this group of student teachers decided to experience the jungle.

Ready for A Jungle Adventure!

Ready for A Jungle Adventure!

Now you may think it’s odd to have an ATV park in the middle of the jungle. But it’s there–the rock says so–and it’s truly IN the jungle.  We’d heard all about it.  We had to experience it first-hand. We got loads of directions from friends at the school on how to get there (all of them different).  Finally, we piled in the van and found our way in to the jungle.

a Jungle village

Village at the edge of the jungle

The further inside the jungle, the narrower the road....

The further in, the narrower the road….

We cautiously eased our van up the ever-narrowing jungle road, hoping to find the much talked about ATV Adventure Park.  And, finally, just when we thought the road was about to end, there it was.

With the motto “Respect the Jungle!’ the group was off on an adventure.

See you later!

See you later!

And what’s a jungle adventure without a little drama?

f Lost in the jungle

Lost in the jungle!

With two secondary science majors on board, they insisted on having the full jungle experience.

Jungle river swim… Is there anything more refreshing?

Back home, several hours later, these adventurers were washed and refreshed and ready for another adventure–this time on the town!

Paige, Rachel, Amanda, Chase, Robin & Mitch: All cleaned up and ready for more!

Blessings in the Temple

March 12, 2014

There were several temples inside the great Batu Caves.  This one was quiet and serene.  In side a priest came out to greet us and asked us where we were from.  He also gave us his blessings….

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Batu Caves 2014

March 10, 2014

We chose a Saturday to take the trip to Batu Caves, a Hindu holy site on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur.  The dramatic limestone mountains can be seen from miles away, but close-up the view is incredible.  Built into the caves and around the entire site are several temples and impressive statues.

The students pose before the statue of Lord Hanumann, the monkey god, as we enter the holy site.

The students pose before the statue of Lord Hanumann, the monkey god, as we enter the holy site.

 

The gold plated statue of Lord Murugan, to whom the cave temples are dedicated, is a thrilling sight to see.

Nearing the steps to the cave, the student teachers pose before one of the most famous Malaysian landmark, the statue of Lord Murugan.

Nearing the steps to the cave, the student teachers pose before one of the most famous Malaysian landmark, the statue of Lord Murugan.

 

We stopped before the gate to the steps, because this was a banana tree with bananas and pod included!  We’d seen so many banana trees nearby, but no one had spotted the bananas on the tree like this one.

Bananas!

Bananas!

 

And they were ready to begin the climb to the top….

Ready, set, go!

Ready, set, go!

 

Next: the view from inside the caves.

Meet the 2014 Student Teachers

March 9, 2014

Teaching is what the student teachers came here to do, and they were eager to get into the routine of teaching.  They seemed to settle in fast, thanks to the support of their cooperating teachers and the enthusiasm of their students, who were very excited to have American teachers.  Take a few moments to get acquainted with this group, the 3rd cohort of Wilkes University student teachers in Malaysia:

1.  Amanda Bast is seeking certification in Pre-K through Grade 4, Early Childhood, and Special Education.  Under the tutelage of Miss Jeaniene Ganisan, Miss Amanda is teaching Mathematics, Moral Education, Physical Education, Art, English, and English Oral to some very lively and lovable second graders.  Meet Miss Amanda:

Miss Amanda by the board with Miss Jeaniene in blue

Miss Amanda by the board with Miss Jeaniene in blue

Miss Amanda with the children of Standard 2.

Miss Amanda with the children of Standard 2.

2. Paige Trusty is near completion of her degree in Mathematics, with a secondary teaching certificate enabling her to teach Mathematics to students in grades 7-12 (Form 1-O/A Levels). Her cooperating teacher is Mr.  Casey Dhevan.  Meet Miss Paige:

Paige Trusty with the students of Form 4B (Sophomores)

Paige Trusty with the students of Form 4B (Sophomores)

Miss Paige gives plenty of real-life examples.

Miss Paige gives plenty of real-life examples to help her students wrap their minds around linear graphing.

3. Chase English (all 6’6″ of him) will soon be certified in Pre-K through Grade 4.  He has established a wonderful rapport with students and staff alike!  His cooperating teacher is Mr. Alfred Sy, who has welcomed Mr Chase as an equal partner.  Meet Mr. Chase

Mr Chase at the new Jungle Jim for the Kindies.

Mr. Chase at the new Jungle Jim for the Kindy students.

Mr Chase with two colleagues en route to class

Mr. Chase with two colleagues en route to class

4.  Mitch Yamrus is pursuing his degree in Biology with a teaching certificate in Secondary Education, 7th through 12th grade.  Mr. Mitch is being mentored by Miss Zainurain Binti Zainal Abidin, and he is teaching Biology and General Science to Forms 1-5 (High School).  Meet Mr. Mitch:

Mr Mitch and Miss Ain

Mr. Mitch and Miss Ain

Mr Mitch teaching a lesson ecosystems....

Mr. Mitch teaching a lesson on ecosystems

5.  Robin Sorber will soon graduate with a degree enabling her to teach Pre-K through Grade 4.   Ms Robin’s cooperating teacher is Mrs. Lalaida Appukutan, and Robin is feeling very comfortable with her colleagues in the Kindy .  The children have really taken to Miss Robin!  Meet her:

Miss Robin looks after the Kindy Students after a swimming class.

Miss Robin looks after the Kindy students after a swimming class.

Miss Robin gets these enthusiastic reactions no matter who she tells!

Miss Robin gets these enthusiastic reactions no matter what the question!

6. Last but not least is Rachel Gill, who is soon to graduate with a degree in Chemistry and a certification to teach secondary students. Her cooperating teacher is Miss Shariza Sharir, and the two of them have become good partners and colleagues.  Rachel teaches Chemistry and General Science to students in Form 1-5 (Grades 7-11). Meet Miss Rachel:

Miss Rachel running a lab

Miss Rachel running a lab

Miss Rachel runs a basic lesson on cell structure.

Miss Rachel holds an introductory lesson on basic cell structure.

While their days are filled with teaching and lesson planning, they do manage to get out and experience the sights of the local area.  Next: the 2014 trip to Hindu holy site, the Batu Caves.

2014 New Year Lions Visit Sri Utama

March 9, 2014

Chinese New Year is celebrated for 15 days. On the last day, Chap Goh Meh, Sri Utama was visited by two mischievous New Year Lions and their entourage–to the delight of all!

Close-up Lions

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The children enjoyed the prankster’s antics, as he taunted us and teased the lions.

The New Year Clown with the Kindergarten classes

The New Year Clown with the Kindergarten classes

Chairman of Sri Utama, En Hassan, jokes with the Clown

Chairman of Sri Utama, En Hassan, jokes with the Clown

Mr. How with a New Friend

Mr. How with a New Friend

If you don’t feed the Lions the Ang Pow (the red envelope with Lucky Money inside) they will try to frighten you into it!

Prof Gina feeds the lion

Prof Gina feeds the lion

But Pn Noorita is not afraid!

But Pn Noorita is not afraid!

Finally, the group makes the presentation of fruit and well wishes to the Chairman of Sri Utama.

Presentation w expl

And a good time was had by all!

2014 Wilkes Student Teachers Celebrate the Year of the Horse at Sri Utama Schools, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

2014 Wilkes Student Teachers Celebrate the Year of the Horse at Sri Utama Schools, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Mitch’s Birthday, Valentine’s Day 2014

March 7, 2014

When Valentne’s Day rolled around, it was hard to believe that two weeks had passed so quickly.  And it was Mitch’s birthday, too!  So we all took him out to Secret Recipe to have a little celebration with our principal Annie Termaat.

Mitch Yamrus, the Birthday Boy!

Mitch Yamrus, the Birthday Boy!

Happy Birthday to You!

Happy Birthday to You!

March 7, 2014

Just a few photos will show you why Wilkes keeps coming back to Sri Utama: Old friends and new friends getting together to serve our students!

Miss Komal, Pn Khairi, Pn Rosemiah, MIss Annie (Principal), Prof gina, and Pn Junaita

Miss Komal, Pn Khairi, Pn Rosemiah, MIss Annie (Principal), Prof gina, and Pn Junaita

Mr How in the middle!

Mr How in the middle!

Miss Amanda with Cooperating teacher Miss Jeaniene, and Wilkes alumn Miss Becky Gallaher

Miss Amanda with Cooperating teacher Miss Jeaniene, and Wilkes alumn Miss Becky Gallaher

MIss Rachel with Cooperating Teacher Miss Shariza, Seconary Chemistry

MIss Rachel with Cooperating Teacher Miss Shariza, Seconary Chemistry

New student teachers Miss Rachel, Mr Mitch and Miss Paige

New student teachers Miss Rachel, Mr Mitch and Miss Paige

Miss Amanda with two of her new students

Miss Amanda with two of her new students

Wilkes Alumni Miss Kate McGurk and Miss Becky Gallaher--teaching grades 4 and 6.

Wilkes Alumni Miss Kate McGurk and Miss Becky Gallaher–teaching grades 4 and 6.

Kids sitting


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