Thursday, January 7, 2010
Sophia had school this Thursday and Friday and I don't have any pictures! I promise to embarrass her next week with my camera.
To go to her school, we leave our apartment and walk to the central square, kauppatori. It is dark and cold. All around the square, the temperature flashes from different buildings. Depending on where we look it is -17, -15, -14 C. We can catch either the 32 or 42 bus to her school. Her school is the Turku International School (TIS) and it is affiliated with the University. It is located in area called Varissuo. There are several schools in the same cluster of buildings and they are located in the middle of a large apartment community. In the dark and snow I have gotten lost walking from the school back to my bus stop. And again, I must emphasize that is dark!
I have been riding the bus with Sophia as we figure things out and settle in to our routine. On Friday we caught a later bus and it was quite crowded. There were older children talking loudly in English on the bus and I realized that they must also be students at the TIS, but in another building. At the second stop into Varissuo, everyone unexpectedly stood up to get off. I asked a man on the bus who was with a small girl. He explained that this was the real stop for TIS. I had been getting off at a later stop that brought me to a back entrance. This parent is from Nepal and doing research at the University. Like me, he was escorting his daughter to school. He asked what we were doing in Finland and I explained that Chris was at the University as well. Then he asked, "But what will you be doing?" Well....I am figuring that out.
Sophia's school is wonderful. She has a schedule of classes that she can attend and moves between buildings depending on where she needs to be. She is taking Finnish as a second language and will start French on Monday. She really enjoyed her English class with Mr. Ward. She is also in Music, Technology, Gym, Maths. For lunch, they go to the cafeteria at the Teaching Training School next door and Sophia gives the lunch two thumbs up.
I have signed up for Finnish language lessons as has Chris. Chris can take his classes at the university, but I am not affiliated with the university so my class is through the tyovaenopisto (worker's school). I start on Tuesday and I am looking forward to it!