Yesterday, Thursday June 26, was so much fun! I woke up and got ready for school around 6:21am. Then I hopped into Mr. Cosa's bus and ate my banana for breakfast. Mr. Cosa dropped us off at Munali like every morning. The group splits up after tea time at Munali. One half works with the morning high school class and another group works with the afternoon class at the high school. Since there is not a lot of space, the school is broken up into two shifts. Some students come in the morning and the rest come in the afternoon. Whatever group doesn't work with the high school students works with the Birdland kids at the elementary school. Usually I work with the high school students at Munali first in the morning but Wednesday and Thursday I worked at Birdland (the primary school) in the morning. After we had tea and crackers in the Munali Girls' Lab, we walked down to Birdland. The walk there is about ten minutes and we always see children in different uniforms than the Munali and Birdland students. Sometimes some of the kids only know, "how are you," "im fine," and "i love you" in English. There have been a number of times that I have said, "Hi!" and they will respond, "Im fine!" Its really cute. One kid shouted out, "I love you!" to us. The other day one girl walked up to me when I was on my way to the bathroom and asked me if she could be my daughter. I did not know how to respond. I told her, "I am too young for kids now."
Once we got down to Birdland we walked into the new building that Mrs. Olive Mumba bought. Let me remind you that new to us is not always what new means to some Zambians. The building looks old and the floors are concrete, cold and dirty. The bathroom does not have a
place to put the toilet paper so its sitting in the unused sink. There are a lot of buckets sitting in there and it just looks distasteful. Right across from the bathroom is the computer lab. The labs has a steel gate and two locks. At the Munali Boys' computer lab, a couple months before we arrived in Africa, some one climbed into the ceiling and crawled over the gate door into the computer storage room and stole fifteen laptops so now they keep the new ones at the Girls' Lab. (There is a Munali Girls' school and a Munali Boys' School)... moving on, once the first group of third graders came in, we introduced ourselves, split up the room so there was about three students to one SAAS student. The third graders were really good with using the touch pad and they understood the idea of moving the cursor to a link and clicking it when they want to see what that link presents. They love when I show them where to go for games. The games are actually pretty fun. Sometimes I will ask them what is their favorite subject and they will say, "maths," and no that is no spelling error, they say Math with an "s." The students are really silent and well behaved. In class, the kids seem really reserved so it is exciting to see them
play games and react to loosing or winning. After teaching about four thirty-minute classes, we went to the main Birdland building and had a snack that one the teachers prepared for us.
We were all very appreciative because food is not a right here in
I heard some yelling to my left and looked over my shoulder to find Matt being attacked by a small mob of charming kids. I asked him if he wanted me to save his glasses and he shrieked yes so I grabbed them for him. Lol. I probably should have asked if he wanted me to get the kids off. After hanging out with the kids for about 10 minutes, my group gathered in the back of the school to go through the kitchen door to get some lunch that was prepared by the teachers. I felt pretty bad though eating knowing that a number of the kids out there do not usually get lunch because of neglect and sometimes just because lack of money. Luckily Ms. Olive Mumba had the idea of using some of the funds we gave for Birdland to prepare a chicken dinner for the kids. That made all of us SAAS people happy. After lunch, Sophie, Matt, Cody, Miranda and I walked up to Munali to teach the afternoon class. I love teaching the morning class because I made some cool friends there but I also like teaching at the afternoon class because I get to work with a student named Michael who is deaf. When I work with Michael, Emmanuel sits near us to help me communicate with Michael. I have strengthened my signing skills SO MUCH this trip. Emmanuel is Deaf and is the Pastor for the
After class I walked outside and saw this teacher that a few of us think is cute. Whenever he sees us he calls out my name and has conversations with me. One time my friend thought he was trying to get her attention but he wanted mine. He showed me where he lives. Don’t worry mom, it was pointing distance from the school. The teachers stay around the campus. Anyways the first day we were at Munali a girl took me to his class and I sat in to watch. I even asked a question after listening for a while and sitting with the girls. I could tell he was happy to see me engaged in his lesson. One day he shared with me that sometimes its best to just tell the girl students that he has a wife and children to make sure that the girls do not even think of trying to get with him. What he said made since to me. He shared with me that he does not have a wife or kids but the girls think he does. I liked his teaching style too. He tried to make sure to give an unbiased opinion on the religions he taught about and when a girl asked him if the Hindu religion was the right religion, he responded, “Well we can learn a lot each religion. We can take something from each sect. You have to respect everyone’s beliefs.” That was really important for me to hear because I was not sure if the teachers gave biased information since there is not a lot of diversity in
Once we all got our blankets, scarves, gloves, and flashlights we packed into three SUVs. However the one I was in did not start so Sophie and I got in the truck with Peter. Sophie had to sit on my lap but it was all good. I was a bit worried because Peter was used to driving a stick shift but not with the stick on the left hand side…. The roads are switched around so we drive on the left. [When Melinda, Peter, Sophie, Miranda and I left the grocery store, we decided to use a taxi. All four girls squeezed into the back seat and Peter was going to sit in the front with the driver. Peter opened the door to sit in the passenger seat to find that he was actually in the driver seat. Lol. We all laughed as he hurried over to the other side of car.] However, Peter drove perfectly. We drove to the site and the sky looked beautiful. Peter cooked the steaks and the Nshima, cabbage, and tomato relish (they call relish anything that is like a side dish that can be eaten with Nshima) was already cooked. While the steak was being cooked, Lucy, Cheray, Margot, Cody, Sophie and I picked a bunch of hay. Then we moved the rocks away from this area by the camp fire, put down the hay, laid down a blanket, and all sat down and cuddled up for warmth. Once the food was ready we sat up and “GRUBBED,” (in other words, we ate and enjoyed what we ate). Then we began making s’mores. I showed everyone my SPECIAL way to make s’mores. I had the perfect stick to place the chocolate on the stick without it falling off too easily. Once I roasted the marshmallows using the ambers, I warmed up the chocolate and finished the sandwich with the crackers (the crackers were the same ones we ate during tea time at Munali). I made one for Paul and Katrin. Sophie only wanted a bite. Everyone loved the melted chocolate! Good times… Then we all huddled up on the blanket and starred at the sky. I love the group I am with! Thursday was a wonderful day!