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February 01, 2005

Comments

Eunice

I believe it's really just the language. Maybe you could post your question in a simpler way? :)

Mick

OK. Any suggestions?

Eunice

Just a simple sentence like, "Guess my age." If they cannot get you, maybe it should go something like, "Guess." Pause. "My age", while pointing to yourself? Just a suggestion to make communication easier. :)

Mick

I understand what you're saying and the approach, and from your suggestion it has made me think that the excitement of talking to a Mzungu (European) means that it is hard to be patient and think.

I'll find the translation and see how I go.

Tell me more about your experiences with children in other countries and how the differences in culture impacted communication and education.

Eunice

When I was in Cambodia, we have a member who was actually a camp leader back at home and he certainly had a ay with children. He would lead them to do dances and those camp songs that we are all familiar with, but not confident enough to teach the kids. It always sparked off a very magical meeting with the kids and they would sing along or simply danced and jumped about. Many would hold your hands and run in a circle. It gets better when all the kids joined hands and danced in a circle. Some songs have actions and those are the ones that we learnt in order to teach the kids and interact with them.

At this particular school, we actually brought along large pieces of paper and crayons and markers. We did a 'Life journey' session with high school students there. We drew out our own life back at home and they did the same too, with all our future aspirations on the big piece of paper. It was very touching during the sharing session when u find out how some of the students lived. And their aspirations for their future. Some of them were very realistic to tell me that they may not be able to afford to go to University to pursue their dreams of being a computer programmer. There was another who hoped to become an air-stewardess so that she can travel cuz her family is poor. Amd yet another one who want to become a politician to improve lives for those back in his village. Those who were stronger in English would help the weaker ones translate. It actually got them thinking and a way to help them remember their dreams and goals in Life. I personally find it a very good way to encourage interaction through pictures and drawing.

The above session was done by another group in Nepal a year earlier when they went to set up computer labs for the schools. It left such a deep impact in the students' lives there that many of them actually passed their final year exams. It was a huge jump from ~30% to ~90%! From the corresponding teacher over in Nepal, they sent an email to us to thank us for being an inspiration in their lives. It was amazing and heartening to hear that.

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