I took my afternoon class to the Cape Town Company gardens last Thursday afternoon. The topic was ‘Giving Directions’ so before we went they first learnt the vocabulary and then practiced saying the words using gestures. This was a lot of fun for them as they were doing the actions and trying to get the correct words to correspond with the actions.

They got a few worksheets to do in pairs to first work out how to give directions to the various places on the map. They grappled with them under my watchful eye and also as a help to them. The one worksheet had restaurant names and they had to work out how to get there giving their partner the correct directions. They worked really hard and some burst out laughing when the directions given were a bit bizarre. ‘Repeat please’ I heard one of them say. I had to smile.

After that I got them ready to assemble so that we could leave for the Company Gardens. They stood at the top of the stairs and they had to say after me: ‘We go down the stairs.’ Of course some were distracted so I repeated the words loudly and they finally followed me down and I gave further directions out of the door and onto the streets. We walked through Green Market Square and past KFC then crossed the road to walk through St. George’s Mall, crossed over Wale Street, past St. George’s Cathedral and turned right into Government Avenue. When Cintia saw a squirrel she nearly got hysterical and grabbed my arm. I assured her that the squirrel wouldn’t harm her.

We walked further and they were excited at everything they saw. We turned right to walk past the lawns and finally to the new structures next to the restaurant. The students were delighted at what they saw – those giant birds’ nests that they could climb into, and admired the surroundings taking photos and just exploring everywhere. They learnt new vocabulary with everything in sight and enjoyed soaking up the sun. The Brazilian, Renato, had just started a few days earlier and he was so pleased and excited experiencing such delights.

They discovered the giant chess pieces and started playing a chess game fooling around in their enjoyment of it.

We started back after that and I reminded them of giving directions. It was all in all a delightful afternoon!