I am so excited – today was the first class with the children, and it was as fun as expected, but damn mucho mas tiring than expected – i can hardly speak right now, I didn’t know that it’d require so much of my voice!
I am working with children of 6th, 7th and 8th grades, in two different public Chilean schools – one is with girls only, and the other one is mixed, but with more children in social risk. Today I was with class 7-A of Colegio de las Ninas – and they were cute as nothing else. I had a girl from Aiesec with me, and also a teacher that needs to be present in all the classess, and still it was noisy and hard to organize but also great – the girls had never known anyone from another continent, and had NO idea where Bulgaria was. They laughed a lot when I told them that in Bulgaria the head shake from left to right means yes, opposite to the rest of the world, they also asked me to write my name in my language, so they see it, and I also drew a map, so they knew where in Europe we were, and they asked to try Bulgarian food too.
This week’s topic was Globalisation. They loved the videos I showed them, and said they had never known any of the facts we saw, and hadn’t really thought about them. At the end of the second video, they started clapping – just like this, naturally, not prompted, and it was great to see that it influenced their emotions and gratitude. Of course, some of them also really insisted on putting make-up during classes, which I was able to stop only by telling them that if noone does their makeup in our workshops, at then end of it I will teach them something.
I have a workshop tomorrow as well, and two each on Thu and Fri – I think I won’t be able to talk by the end of the week, for sure. I also asked them to fill out a questionnaire, so I know a bit about them and their current thoughts. Here’s a quick preview of one class of girls aged 13: 15 out of the 32 want to study in university, 4 have visited other countries than Chile, 18 are studying another language, 4 say that Facebook is their main hobby, one thinks she’s not at all creative, one likes to paint with her feet, two study Asian languages because they love manga, and one says that she studies English because her “papi (read “my guy”) will come and look for me one day”.
Tomorrow I have the 8th grade, let’s see how it’ll be there. Check some pictures of the school sports competition I did 2 weeks ago to see some of the girls I’ll work with. And wish me luck.