Friday, February 11, 2011

Feb 11, 2011

Greetings all

Today, while riding the school bus to school, I was struck by the intensity of purpose of the people of this area.  I catch the bus at 6:45, and as I stand at the spot where I will be picked up, because they recognize me, and there is no designated bus stop, people are pouring by me on the way to construction jobs, school, and parents walking their children to school, while ladies sitting on the sidewalk making sandwiches to those in need.  These are hard working folks who care deeply about their lives, the lives of their children, and the need to persevere and marshal on.  I am humbled standing at the corner among these industrious people who are so intent at the start of their day, that started long before I see them at 6:45.

In my observations today, I witnessed the issuance of textbooks.  I am not sure if this is the first time, but it was a dramatic moment, and the students seemed reverent and pleased to have this new tool in their hands.  It may change instruction, because previously the teacher lectured from the text, but now all of the upper grade students have the same written word.  It is a Dumas moment, where the populace is now in the know.  I revel in these experiences and hope that later when back in Texas, I'll be able to apply this new knowledge somehow toward the betterment of the children in our schools who come from countries where a textbook is such a treasure.

We have completed now 12 hours of Spanish tutoring and we are both having a grand time with our separate teachers.  Both are challenging us, and we welcome this.  I have never spoken so much Spanish in my life.  I can only hope that after six months, some fluency will result. Practice, practice, practice.

I hope you are well and that the ice and snow in Dallas lifts soon.

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