Monday, June 29, 2009 Comment0 Comments

Yikes its been over a week since my last post and boy has a lot happened. This country is so wonderful and I have been lucky enough to see even more sides of it recently. Sometimes I still can't believe that this summer is real. It would take much too long to go into everything so I will just list things from two weekends ago and then talk more about this most recent weekend and events in the next post. I am going to try and actually update this more often. Promise.

Last weekend: Nairobi

  • went to Nairobi
  • kissed a giraffe
  • held a cheetah
  • fed a monkey
  • went clubbing
  • hookah
  • Masai Market and bought lots of goodies
The last week we have continued working in the classrooms as well as on our clubs. It seems that the students are used to us as teachers now and have been responding well to us. It's great to see some of the students, like Vincent and Francis in my upper primary class, take an active role in the class and put forth an effort and interest to learn. After realizing that the one social studies book that we could even find was not going to suffice, I decided to start coming up with alternative lessons. So for the last week or so the students have been learning the countries of Africa. I started off by having them list off as many countries as they could think of. They did pretty well but still not the level that I would expect of them. After we did this, the students then had to try and label a blank map with all of the countries that they named. This went decent haha. They did quite well with the border nations of Kenya, but that's due in large part to the giant mural of the countries in the classroom next door. Now for the last few days we have been having the students study maps that they had to fill in correctly in hopes that they can learn the names and locations of most African nations. Today was the first time we have evaluated how this went by having them name as many nations now that they could remember without a map and the list more than doubled from the first one. Granted, two of the kids had written a cheat sheet but whatever.

Clubs have also been going well. We finally got an actual roster of names for each club and so attendance is now possible and the kids know for sure what club they are supposed to be going to. The art and choir clubs have been getting a lot of help from local volunteers (mostly Sam Kairu and his friends) and that has been wonderful. It looks like the literature club may also be getting some help soon. Hopefully now we can find some helpers for the nature club in hopes that by the time we leave, each of these clubs have the people and resources in place to continue onward. In the mean time nature club has been doing activities with what we have. For example this past Wednesday we put beans in wet napkins and placed them in the greenhouse to grow (hopefully). We shall see in about 3 hours how that went. If all goes well we will be planting the bean sprouts in water bottles so that each of the boys (my club is all boys, guess girls don't like nature) will have their own plant to tend to.

When we aren't teaching classes or running the clubs we have been spending the majority of our time in Nyeri town. Recently we have been exploring ways to expand the Centre's contacts and hopefully bring in visitors and potential partners or volunteers. Last Thursday we were able to meet with two seperate AIDs organizations that work in and around Nyeri. The first one was called APHIA II and is a USAID sponsored program. Much of their work involves AIDS education and prevention. One program that they have is a travelling performing arts group and we have asked them to potentially come to the Centre and perform for the kids. The APHIA II people are already somewhat familiar with the Centre and the people involved with it. The second group that we met with was called SWAK (Society for Women and AIDS in Kenya). This group was also really neat and seemed to have some good things going. They focus mostly on women and children who are afflicted or affected by AIDs but have also implemented a male-based initiative. So we had some ideas about possible presentations by the group at the Centre or even introducing their services to any of the children who may wish to use them.

Ok so that is enough for now, time crunch and don't have the desire to keep going. I will update later this week about the safari and such. Should have some photos to go along with it as well.

*Tomorrow Deanna, Caitlyn, and I are going to Nairobi for a couple days to see our favorite honorary team member, Michelle, off to Puerto Rico. We are really going to miss her. She has been so great and such a help for us. It's wierd to think now that we didn't know each other before and that she wasn't an original member of the Service Team. We are already planning trips to visit each other in Kansas, Puerto Rico & DC/Boston. Can't wait.



Post a Comment