The Introductory Days

Hello friends, family, and strangers alike!

The past couple of days have been an adventure! Yesterday was spent getting our background checks completed and going grocery shopping for the week after agreeing on a few simple meals that we could all manage to make. We had to divide and conquer because the limited internet, the long waits on the phone, and the background check registration company delayed half of our team. However, we were assisted by the kind staff at the police station. They stayed over their normal lunch break to ensure we were taken care of and given the "okay" to be in the schools the next three weeks. We are all extremely grateful for their hospitality and helpfulness.

Today was our first day in the schools: five of us in the elementary, two in the middle school, and two in the high school. Those of us in the elementary school had an unique experience today at the opening of a brand new school: Catherine A. Miller Elementary School. It was a generally chaotic day for us as our teachers were dealing with being off their normal schedule with the blessing ceremony for the school on top of handling the excited children on their first day back from winter break. However, all of us had positive experiences. All of us -- including those in the secondary schools -- saw a variety of behaviors, disciplines, and classroom expectations which allowed for a quality discussion over dinner.

In our free time after school, we've found we have to improvise a little bit. The internet out here only gets reception on a clear-skied day. . . which we've yet to have. (We've been lucky enough to be getting the blogs up with as little trouble as we have been.) This being so, we spend our time reading, preparing and cleaning up from meals, playing board games, and playing card games all while learning more about each other and immersing ourselves in friendly conversation.

We all look forward to continuing our observations as well as getting small bits of hands-on experience helping with labs, line basics, recess duty, and general questions in the classroom.

Until next time,

Mikaela Reth

The Student Drum Ensemble
Student drum ensemble performing at the Opening Ceremony.