While the kids are in many ways attending the same school as last year, both changes of location and ages have meant a new experience for the both of them. The post will focus on introducing to you Ezra’s School, still supported by the foundation “Yirtrak” but now called “Colectivo: Semillas de Luz” – Collective: Seeds of Light.
Ezra’s “school” is made up of a collective of 21 kids (ages 6-12) many of them mexican, but also of Australian, Spanish, Israeli, French, German and yes, Canadian background. Each family was able to choose the monthly cost they were able to pay as the school is supported by a system of “padrinos” (godparents, many coming from Spain/Europe) and other supporters of “Yirtrak.” Many of the families are also quite involved in their children’s education at Semillas de Luz – taking part in work projects, regular assemblies, and doing events/activities to gain resources for the school. One feature that places families in a direct teaching role is the “Taller de Familias” – where parents lead workshops on their areas of interest and expertise! There are 2 European volunteers working at the school this year along with three main workers, Lau, Myriam and Pako (who works part-time with Ezra’s class of 5 kids during the grade 1’s “proyecto”, or project time). Ezra is doing well – we recognize that one of the challenges of a multi-grade school for Ezra is the need to make new friends with some of the bigger kids. We hope these friendships are kindled over time. Below are a few more pictures to introduce you to his school and their daily routines.
While these pictures highlight his morning routine Monday through Thursday, these days will finish with a different one hour group workshop including music, math laboratory, yoga, art, and whatever other workshop a family brings that week. Friday’s have their own schedule which will largely consist of excursions to different parts of San Cristobal or perhaps even out of town.
The “colectivo” is a unique experience for Ezra and the other kids, not only for its style of education but also in bringing kids of different cultural and socio-economic backgrounds together to try and learn and live peacefully and lovingly together. I find the vision of the school quite exciting, especially in a culture where alternative education opportunities are very few (and most relatively expensive), and governmental schools are quite structured/regimented, and often have large classroom sizes, which doesn’t allow for much creative, diverse or child-focused learning. However, this group and project is not without its difficulties and struggles. Please pray for Ezra and all of us as we seek to bring the presence and knowledge of Jesus to this diverse and interesting community.
(While being part of the same project Hilary’s school in a different location which happens to also be where my office is….but more on that later).
Have a good week all,