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Sep 2014

17 sept. 2014; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada.

Another wonderful day for the guests to enjoy. For a cruise this late in the season it is shaping up to be a very good one. A pity about cancelling the first port, Bar Harbor, but wind can happen anytime of the year and is not really related to this time of the year here. But it is dry and sunny every day and that is something to be very happy with. I did not see much of that sunshine today as I was buried deep in the dungeons of the ship, where we have a training room for the crew. Today was Examination Day for my students with a total of 33 “graduating” in the fascinating science of how to lower a lifeboat, how to keep those inside alive until being rescued, and the most recent addition to this, how to keep up the morale up of those inside that boat.  The 33 included 9 different nationalities and each nationality comes a different way of looking at exams and reacting to it. Each race, each nationality has a different way of reacting and as a teacher or in this case an examiner you have to be in tune with that. Running a Western European style of doing an exam only works in Western Europe.  Some of the crew will freeze up completely when it comes to a formal approach, when during one session you have to show that you know-it-all.  When that happens, people will fail who in reality know everything and thus you eliminate a crewmember who would do very well but stumbles over that one exam. What I have been doing in this situation, is to constantly run little exams during the training and test each student on the presence of the knowledge. Especially with the Asian students the knowledge is often there, it just takes a little bit of effort to get it out. I had promised them that I would not require a long and multiple question exam.  I was just going to ask 3 questions and if I saw that they would answer without […]

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