Slovakia Day 33 – Sick

I am fairly certain that I had just finished telling someone this weekend that I hardly ever get sick, and that I don’t expect to be getting sick anytime soon. I guess I should have knocked on wood because lo and behold I find myself sick.

I got up this morning for school, feeling like I had just drank a gallon of sand, and with my head feeling like it has got 20 liters of water in it. That is no good for school, so I told my host dad and went back to bed. I did not get up again until around noon, where I still felt the same. I took some medicine that I had brought over from the US, and stayed in bed for most of the day. Which is unfortunate, because I had been somewhat excited to go to school today. A pity.

Because of the lack of interesting things that I did today, I will talk about something that I have been putting off for a while. I mentioned weeks ago that I would dedicate a post specifically to the differences in Slovak schools and American schools, and I am going to try and take some time to explain them.

First, I must point out that what I am about to write about is just what I have observed, not what might actually be the case. I am going to try and be as objective as possible, although I would recommend taking what I am about to say with a pinch of salt. To understand Slovak schooling, you first must understand that they have an entirely different philosophy and approach. In American schools, it is about getting certain requirements done to graduate, such as X amount of math classes, or Y amount of English classes. In Slovakia, you do the same classes throughout your entire high school career, such as biology, or english.

Although your grades in each year are important, what really determines whether you pass or fail high school is whether or not you pass a massive final exam. This exam covers everything they would have learned in the past 4 years of high school, and if you want to be able to go to college you have to score well on this exam.

Even the grading is different here. Instead of letter grades, such as A, B, C, they have a number system. Scoring a 1 is the best you can get, with 5 being the lowest. Normally, an average student will get 1s and 2s, I haven’t heard of any decent students getting any lower than that.

Something that really interests me here, is their take on creativity. What I am about to write is something that I am not sure myself, so take it as you would like. When asking someone about a project that was due, they were baffled when I suggested that we do something a little outside the box. When I inquired with them about what everyone else would be doing, they informed me that everyone would be doing the same thing as us. I thought that maybe there was a strict requirement for how the project had to be done, but when I asked about this, the simply told me that “no one does it that way”. Very strange.

Anyway, I am still feeling a little under the weather, and I want to be able to go to school tomorrow so I am going to log off here. Of course, I couldn’t forget the word of the day! The word of the day is:

Zaklad – Basis

Pronounced like you might say in English (I think), and I choose this word today because a healthy diet is the basis to a healthy lifestyle!

 All of these pictures were taken on a Sony A6000. If you are looking for a great lightweight camera that takes fantastic pictures, I would definitively recommend this setup here.
Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens

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