Sunday, August 30, 2009

Bye-bye dreadlocks!

I removed my dreadlocks! People have said that to get rid of dreads you have to shave your head - not true! There is a special shampoo and conditioner that is made to take the dreads out...I had the girls (Mary- in the yellow and Namakau) - help me (they have been asking if they could take them out since the day I came)They had a lot of fun doing it, and then when it was finished paraded me around and told everyone that they had pombasoled me (means to take out, in this case my dreads, but also used when taking our braids)....My parents sent me the shampoo and conditioner (thanks again) is the process! First shampoo and conditioner, and then with the conditioner still in comb out the dreads...then it is finished!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The world...

We are doing stuyding wihth the kids who have stayed, but we wanted to do something more fun we made a globe. I (Katie) paper-mached a balloon with the younger kids. We used the scraps left over from the end of term celebration (can't waste paper!)

Once that was dry (a few days) Curtis helped the older boys paint it blue, then they each cut out a it it!

In the first picture I am helping the white dress is Mary, and with his back to the camera is Benjamen (day-student). His mom works for us, so he has been studying with us also.

In the second picture the boys are holding their finished globle...they are all posing for the picture :) In the red is Nelson, to the left in the blue is Layson, behind him in the black is Danny, and next to him inthe white is Samuel.

The last picture is the boys painting the globe and studying the map to decide how to best cut the countries.

They did a wonderful job on this project, and I think they had a lot of fun doing it as well...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Yard work!

One of our trees has been dead for a while and has recently fallen on the power lines. Today we decided to make it a project to take the branches down so nothing gets damaged. However, the trees grow around each other, and the branches wrap around each other with great strength. So this made it impossible to take down one part without everything else. This became the day’s project for me (Curtis), Katie and the four boys we have staying with us right now. Also, Henry, one of our secondary students showed up and began to help. We ended up taking down three dead trees and a bunch of branches.
(first picture is Samuel cutting down the first tree)
We used the trees for firewood for the kitchen, however the branches were too small to cook over so just had a bonfire with them instead. That was a good way to end the day -It was a lot of fun, as we sat around the fire and told stories. The kids really enjoyed it and it was a good reward for their hard work all day.

Every time we cut a tree down we had to guide where it fell, so it wouldn't land on the power line. In this picture is Curtis in front, in the red Layson, the short on next to him is Nelson, and the one in the black in back is Danny.

Here is Katie cutting down a tree ...

And the last picture are the only two girls left: Namakau (in the yellow) and Mary...the were enlisted at the end to rake up the last of the branches and help carry the branches over to were we had our fire. You can see the difference between the first and last picture and see how much we cleaned up! Very productive day!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Life Skills Conference

These kids are Nelson (5th grade) and Abigail (6th grade). They spent the first week of their break at a conference put on by UNICEF to teach kids about HIV/AIDS and how to educate others. The conference was teaching kids the Life Skills curriculum that the Zambian Government along with UNICEF, and I am pretty sure USAID developed. This curriculum aims at reducing HIV/AIDS through education starting as young as kindergarten. I have read through some of the material, and it is very good. UNICEF came out to our school (not a small feat) to talk to the teachers about the conference, and explain what they wanted from the kids that were going to attend. It is really awesome that UNICEF recognizes our project and are working with us, this is a wonderful connection in itself to have. Nelson and Abigail were chosen by the teachers to attend the conference, and next term they will be teaching the other students, not just at the orphanage, but at the whole school! This is really cool! When the two came back from the conference, they were so proud and eager to show us their certificates and tell us what they had learned.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

just hanging out...

From Katie:
We are on break now...many of our kids have gone to spend the break with other family...aunts, uncles, grandparents, older siblings, etc...we went from 48 kids to 7! Needless to say things have been pretty quiet for us. We are taking full advantage of this to get ready for next term, planning activities and lessons. We are also studying with the kids we have, and playing games with them. I bought some nail polish for the girls to all do their is Esther (6th grade) painting Mary's nails (2nd grade). When she finished doing Mary's fingers, Mary went to paint her toes...then mine! Nothing a little scrubbing can't fix :)

From Curtis:

One of the oldest games in the world world. Most of you will know it as Mancala, but it has many different names and versions throughout all of Africa. Here in Zambia, it is known as Nsolo, and is played on a game board twice the size as Mancala. Most the rules are the same, just slight differences. I recently purchased a game board at an arts and crafts show, and had the craftsman explain me the rules, and play a few rounds with me. He also explained to me a story that long ago in Zambia, two kings ended a bitter war, by playing this game instead of fighting. I am really excited to have a tournament with the kids this term. Here is a picture of me, Layson (5th grade) and Benjamin (2nd grade, a day student) practicing.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

End Of term Celebration!

We did it! Our first term here is finished! The school here has three terms, each term has a month ‘holiday’ break in-between. Curtis and I came here during the break between first and second term. We have been here working with these kids throughout all of second term, helping them study, do homework, etc and now it is finished. On Friday we had a celebration with ALL the kids who attend school here – about 220. It started with acknowledging the work each kid did by naming their class rank, and then they got a sucker. The first picture is Martin (our youngest kid), he is getting his sucker from his Uncle Curtis!

After this was over the parents and guardians had a meeting, while Curtis and I had a HUGE craft project. It was utter chaos – but so incredibly fun! We had 2 pieces of construction paper per kid (they got to each pick the colors they wanted) and then they could make whatever they wanted. I had a few examples (a butterfly and a heart) both with designs cut out and glued on. The kids all shared their scrap pieces so each one left with at least one great project…it was really fun!

Special thanks to Deb Moorse for the construction paper and glue!

Here are some finished products (in the yellow is Mary (grade 2), and in the blue is Rebecca (grade 1)

Here are the kids working hard on their projects: (left to right) Bobo (grade 2), Namakau (grade 4), Shelly (grade 5), and a day student whose name I don’t know.

Here is me handing out paper to each of the kids – we tried really hard to get them in a line, but that just didn’t happen (like I said utter chaos)…the kids wanted to make sure they would all get paper…there was plenty, but they didn’t believe me!