I had the privilege to help with a teacher's training seminar this past week at Pamoja. And although we threw it together in just under 4 days it turned out to be one of my favorite experiences here yet! The ladies at Pamoja had wanted to do a teacher's seminar for some time but with life, business, and visitors it had gotten pushed back. When Ginger arrived and after I realized...well...ummm....she freakin' rocks we decided to put her skills to good use and the seminar was on! With no time to really plan, advertise, or prepare we prayed it would be a blessing and ran around like crazy fools getting everything done. We wanted to bless and encourage teachers here as teachers everywhere are under appreciated! And we also wanted to offer training on classroom management, structure, and creativity for teachers of preschool age kids. It was a lot of work and we are exhausted but all I can say is it was so worth it! 27 teachers showed up everyday (some traveling on 4 dala dalas to get here) and they loved it! We only wanted 15 teachers but when so many came and were excited to learn we had to be African and let everyone stay. In a place where the apathy often discourages me I was so encouraged by these women and their desire to learn, grow, help each other, and share together. It was also so fun to have all the women on our team working together on something. I think having it be only women made for quick bonding and allowed us all to "let our hair down" (totally possible even when wearing head coverings:). The first two days Ginger and I taught and we helped to translated issues such as Multiple Intelligences in the classroom, structure, and creative discipline and craft ideas. The third day they had to break into teams and teach all of us and put their new knowledge to use in preparing and teaching a real lesson and this was by far my favorite day. They really did a great job teaching and I laughed so hard at everyone pretending to be the naughty students and pushing each other, tattling, and even climbing under desks! It was hilarious! I have never seen so many women smile and that blessed my heart and made the preparation chaos and work totally worth it! Upon completion of the 3 days they all relieved a certificate and a gift bag full of goodies they can use in their classrooms (glue, colored pencils, kanga pieces for crafts, food coloring to make paint, music CD, etc). Everyone of the 27 women want more seminars and would like us to come and visit their classrooms and continue building a relationship. We look forward to all the students who will be blessed by these amazing teachers! Yeah Pamoja's first Teacher Training Seminar! many pics courtesy of Doro (thanks!)...
there is always room for one more here!