domingo, 17 de junio de 2012

Excursions and Quinceañeras

hey all,

So this week was fun and different for many reasons including the anticipation of VaCaTiOn!!!

At the school it was one of those weeks where everyone had already taken exams, the kids are about to go on vacation, and just about everyone wants to take it easy and do something fun.  On Thursday all the kids in the school went on an excursion outside of NPH.  We went to a really pretty park about 1.5 hours away where there were obstacle course type stuff and important cities in Guatemala in miniature.

Here's little Tikal - Mayan ruins.  I hope to go to the real place in November

Then on Friday it was Teacher Day (does that exist in the US?).  But it was cute because a lot of the kids put on little skits and songs for the teachers.  I forgot to bring my camera that day though.

And everything starting Friday afternoon was about getting ready for quinceañeras.  Every year NPH has one day of huge celebration for all the girls who turn 15 that year.  Its an enormous event and reminded me of a mix between a wedding and prom.  We had mass and a ceremony.  The girls were presented with a ring and they performed a dance.  We had a big reception and a bunch of outside guests.  It was really fun.

Everything set up and looking nice

The girls making their grand entrance
The volunteers job was to help decorate and to serve dinner to everyone.  My job was serving the drinks.  Amazingly with all the people and movement and tendency to be clumsy, nothing fell.

serving food
And we all got to get dressed up, dance, and be in good company.

It was the perfect last day before our two week vacation.  Today Charlotte and I are headed off to Lake Atitlan and Xela before spending a week in Mexico.  Its crazy to think its already been 6 months and we already have to renew our passports.  Well, we're planning on having lots of adventures and Mexican food which will all show up in my next blog. so excited! Hope you all are well!

sábado, 9 de junio de 2012

volcanoes and chess games

Hello world,

Here's a fun activity my kids did in their workshop.  We made volcanoes outside in the mud, decorated it with "trees" and exploded them with vinager and baking soda.  Working with the mud was a good sensory aspect and the kids loved seeing them explode.

And with my class, I'm now teaching artistic expression and physical education.  I only work with small groups and in this way the kids get more attention and instruction on their different levels.  Luckily there's been huge donations of glue, paint, and various artsy stuff and an extra classroom I can use.  I hope it all goes well.  Here's a pic of Gustavo and me.  He's a little trouble maker but very cute and can be very sweet.  He's one of the kids who had a really hard time at school, but has been improving a ton in the past months.

And I was able to find a super cheap chess set a week or two ago and its become a favorite with my section of adolescent boys.  Its been surprisingly competitive especially with a certain tio who one night insisted I play in a different room away from the noisy boys to concentrate better.  45 minutes later, I won, but a rematch will be coming...
My section has been really fun as they're older and we can have more in depth conversations and play more complicated games.  Its a nice change of pace.

Speaking of changing the pace, one more week until vacation!!!! Yes, I have been here for almost 6 months and its time for me to leave the country.  The kids are going to get a break from school, and while they're out, Charlotte and I are going to take two weeks to hit up lake Atitlan, Xela, and San Cristobal de Las Casas Mexico.  We're going to kayak, hike, see ruins, relax, and eat some authentic Mexican food.  Can't wait! 

Well, I hope you all are well.  Until next time.