Thursday, December 18, 2008

Teaching English in Jalpa

Some friends of ours in San Miguel work in Jalpa, a village in the countryside, and teach English to students there.  Several members of our team joined them each Wednesday to help teach the students.  It's a small, rural, poor town, but they have a pretty rockin school, and it's sweet to see all the students eager to learn.  It is a privilege for them, not something they take for granted.  Though I never was able to go during the teaching phase, the day I went we got to watch the little "skits" the students did for the rest of the school (not all of the students are in the English class).  It was very simple and yet incredibly endearing.  Some of the students did the song "Five Little Ducks," while others did little vignettes of school and home life.  For example:
Student A: I have a book.  I am reading.  I like to read.
Student B: I am studying history.  
Student C: Oh no, I have homework!
Mind you, all of this with a thick Hispanic accent.  From kids.  So.  Awesome.  

The day I was there, it also happened to be the annual hand-out-coats-to-kids day.  Another older couple buys coats all year long at the Tuesday Market and then comes out to give them away to the kids.  It was so sweet to be able to help the kids find a coat they liked, fully knowing it may be their only source of warmth for the winter.  They were so cute, and truly appreciative.
Finally, we were able to play with the kids for awhile before we left.  Their favorite game seemed to be one in which the sole goal was to stomp on each other's feet.  That's all.  Just run around and try to stomp or be stomped.  I felt kind of bad for my friend Emily in her flip flops, but she didn't seem to mind.  It was a sweet way to bond with the kids, love on them, and just have fun.  Though I wish I could have spent more time there, and would certainly love to spend a good chunk of time working at that kind of program, it was nice to get a feel for it and help out in whatever ways we could. 

Some of the kids waiting to watch the skits

Five Little Ducks went out to play!

Some of the girls in their new coats! 

Hannah playing, err, wrestling with some of the boys, one of whom thought he was a bull

Wonderful day

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