Since receiving my official acceptance e-mail, I’ve been eagerly awaiting my specific city placement and school assignment. Each Bulgarian ETA (English Teaching Assistant–I’ll likely be using this acronym a lot!) is matched with a school and paired with a teacher mentor. After much anticipation, I was placed at the Peyo Yavorov school in Silistra, Bulgaria!
Obviously I still have tons to learn about my new home, but here is what I know so far:
- Silistra looks very different in Bulgarian: Силистра…holy cow! Bulgarian uses the Cyrillic alphabet, but more on that in a later post.
- It’s in the northeastern portion of the country situated on the Danube River, which creates Bulgaria’s border with Romania (see top right corner of map above).
- The population is ~35,000. Minneapolis is over 10 times that big!
- It looks like I’ll be pretty far from the capital, Sofia, but close to the Black Sea.
- The city has a Roman tomb, remains of a Medieval fortress, an Ottoman fort, and an art gallery.
- “Peyo Yavorov” is a Language High School (8th – 12th grades) that focuses on teaching English, German, and French
- Students at this school have to pass two entrance exams, earning the school a more elite reputation
- The school is named after a popular Bulgarian poet and revolutionary
- Average class size is 22!
- My teacher mentor is Valentin Eftimov. I don’t know anything about him other than his role as an English teacher, but I sent him an e-mail, and hope to know more soon!
I found this picture of Peyo Yavorov on their website. Apparently it was recently renovated with funds from the European Union (to which Bulgaria was just admitted in 2007)…looks nice!