Today began before sunrise as sandwiches were packed and bowls of cereal quickly consumed alongside steaming mugs of coffee. The hour-something trek to the community seemed longer today, but the journey was quickly forgotten once we arrived at our destination.
Young, now familiar faces greeted us at the school gates with open arms. Shouts of “hola” and friendly embraces have quickly become our morning ritual and one the team won’t soon forget – it seems like each day the warm hugs of the students have become tighter and longer than the day before. Some students have even begun to memorize our names and seek us out individually among the throngs of bodies on the basketball court in front of the school before classes begin.
After our initial greetings the team was shuffled in to a small but vibrant classroom full of smiling children. Unique to this year’s corporate trip, we were given the opportunity to teach a second grade class, and the curriculum was ours to decide. Choosing what we thought to be appropriate, Yessica explained to the class in Spanish that we’d be trying our hand at teaching the students several things in our language – among them, the alphabet and parts of the human body.
The students were quick to pick up the alphabet and after a few short minutes were singing right along with the EIC team. Once they had a decent grasp of their ABC’s in English and the familiar tune playing in the back of their heads, we played a few rounds of hangman, allowing each student their turn to come up to the board to choose and pronounce a letter of the English alphabet. Nearly every student skipped or ran to the board, and we ended with the class as the winners (despite the fact that our hangman had eyes, fingers, shoes, and even a bow in her hair).
After a quick lunch and a game of hide and seek with the sunshine, the team grabbed some paintbrushes and helped create a hopscotch court on the concrete directly in front of the school. Armed with paints of varying colors, we crafted a jet for all of the schools students to enjoy tomorrow.
Tomorrow we’ll be visiting the home of a local student and can’t wait to share more of our adventure with you!