Last year, at the end of the semester, my students all had to write short stories in English with Yoruba characters and sensibilities. It was a way for me to have a peek into their knowledge of the language and cultures so far and see what they’ve gained from the class and from their own research. Their stories all surprised and impressed me, individually and I will cherish the scripts for as long as I live.
This semester was different. The class project this time was that they had to pick particular songs in Yoruba and learn to sing it within three weeks. To do this, they had to work with a student tutor who is also a from Nigeria who came to train them every Wednesday. He also found them costumes. I had told them the meaning of the songs in class before handing them over to the tutor, so all I had to do next was just to wait for the final presentation which was set for the final day of class. I invited the head of department and a journalist from the Alestle to come on that day to share in the surprise. I had only heard of their progress and how much fun they had rehearsing for the day. I had not seen them sing before, and I had a feeling that some of them were nervous. At the end of the day, this happened: I was very impressed. From the following video made of their presentation, you will see why the class presentation was the best final class I could ever have hoped for, as a goodbye to a great teaching year.