I taught Shakespeare in Botswana

"Those who can, do; those who can't, teach." That's what adults said when I was growing up, and it seemed cruel, since my girls-only school seemed to specialise in turning out teachers, and it didn't leave us much pride in our future job.

After university I became a social worker and then a saleswoman. I seemed to have broken the pattern, but all the time a classroom was waiting for me.I became a teacher under bizarre circumstances, but in retrospect it was one of my better career moves. I was 25 and had been living for a year in Botswana with my geologist husband.Botswana in the late 1970s was remote and undeveloped.

There was just one tarred road, running between the capital and our little town, and most of the rest of that vast country was interlaced by dirt roads and rough tracks. There was little water, but gold and diamonds glittered underground, a promise of wealth to come. Our town had a large secondary school, and pupils came from distant settlements to board. As the year began, a new English teacher was expected from India. He seemed to have got lost on the way. Would I look after his classes for a fortnight?He never did show up. I settled down to teach two first-year classes with students ages 12 to 15, whose knowledge of English was basic, and a fourth-year literature class studying George Eliot and Shakespeare for international exams.

Editor's Comment
Women in Politics caucus NGO, a welcome development

In the 2014 General Election, women who stood for parliamentary elections were a mere 17 out of a total of 192 aspirants, and sadly the number dropped to 11 out of 210 parliamentary aspirants in the 2019 General Election. Hopefully, registration of the Women in Politics Caucus will give women the necessary support to join politics. While things were slowly improving, women for a long time were at the receiving end as compared to their male...

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