Zoranje Day 2: Time For School
Today was the day we had been waiting for; the promised highlight was that we got to visit a middle school classroom and the kindergarten at the Ecole Nouvelle in Zoranje, Haiti (the amphitheater we are working on is directly adjacent to the school, in between the school and the community center)!
We had an early morning, all getting up at the ungodly hour of 6am. After a quick breakfast, we made it to Zoranje in time for the school's raising of the flag. It seemed almost ritualistic - even the tiniest children knew exactly what to say and do as the flag was being hoisted. Then it was back to work on the amphitheater. We continued our work from yesterday, again with the help of the Zoranje locals. Shosh and I (Barbara) both take French at Tufts, and felt more comfortable trying to strike up conversations in French with the people we were working with. They had lots of questions for us, and we had so much to ask them too! All of the community members were very curious, but kind and receptive to what we had to say (and they beared with our broken French). Shosh's crowning moment was when she explained where her home state of Ohio is to all the community members.
All of us had a chance to go to the kindergarten; we went half at a time while the other half went to either a middle music or English class. In the English class, we taught them how to play hangman and used their English workbook vocabulary words. We also found common ground while singing Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber. It was a little unexpected how much they wanted us to be involved; we were just expecting to observe but we ended up having fun with them all.
The highlights of the music class included teaching them "The Wobble'" performing Journey and Spice Girls songs, and learning a rap in Creole that they performed for us at the start of the class. They all had so much energy, and so much swagger when it came to rapping.
The kindergarteners were precious! They were so happy to see us and loved to climb all over us. It was hard to refuse when the kids asked to wear our hats, and even harder to ask for them back. Monkeying around with the kindergarteners and their smiles and laughter was the highlight of our day.
We ended our day by testing our haggling skills at le marché en fer, or the iron market. We are going out to dinner tonight and are looking forward to some live Haitian jazz!