Arambha

Roosters crowing children growing, got big plans but dirty pants, with kids to teach life is sweet!

Category Archives: Primary School

What Am I Doing?

The length of the week here varies dramatically.

Things slow down considerably when you first arrive. Most likely because you aren’t checking your email every 15 minutes and there is no RSS news feed to bait you at the dinner table. You walk everywhere rather than drive, and even though your meeting is at 2:00 p.m., at 2:15 you know you’ve still got a few minutes to spare.

After a few days of sleeping at odd hours and unpacking into your home away, the moments speed up. There’s so much to be done – and much of what needs to be done will only keep you moving forward into more tasks and projects…. For instance admissions – while arguably essential – they only put us farther behind from an educational standpoint.

And then, without preamble, you’re sitting in the school office explaining that you’ll be gone in three weeks, meaning you’ll only be there for the first five days of real school. And you want to cry. Because, like with anyone you truly love, it could never be enough time.

After much Nepali/English calendar confusion, Libby, Tope, and I have come to this conclusion. The fact is my time is almost up, and there is so much I want to do.

It’s not that I’ve been lazing around. I and the other volunteers have been concerned with the small details that will help Kopila continue to develop as a school.

Jake figured out a great system for hanging charts and student work in the classrooms that is both cost effective and weather resistant. I’ve been cataloging the school library using software that will allow me to remotely view the library’s holdings so that I can recommend new acquisitions and, most importantly, help our teachers learn how to use literature in the classroom.

Caitlin is continuing our efforts to recycle and provide the school with much needed organizational supplies like pencil holders and book ends.

We’re continuing our computer training for the teachers. Migrating lesson plans to a digital format and teaching them how to use internet resources will hopefully save them precious time in the long run, and make teaching more interesting.

Tope and I chose canvas for the dust covers we’re putting in the library and the office. Dirt is a constant issue here, especially for electronics like copiers and computers. We’re also hoping they’ll make things easier for our house and school staff which work 16 hrs + everyday to keep the school in running order.

Libby and I are giving administrative and facilities management responsibilities to our oldest students. But that is a system in itself which requires oversight and planning. Wen haven’t quite figured out that piece yet.

All these things seem simple, quick, not a problem – but they take time here. And while small, we hope that they’ll foster the attitude of care and innovation which is so essential to the success of a project like this. We know we can’t stay forever, so we’re doing our best to create an environment which supports our teachers so they can continue to grow as educators. They’ll have to do the majority of the hardest work – the day to day – on their own. We’re here to help them discover the tools that will help them create their best work yet.

We’re trying to transform workers on assembly lines into artisans in studios. With string and job charts.

*****************************************************
Photos from our teacher resource fair, 2 weeks ago:

It’s So Fluffy! (In a square, metal clad kind of way…)

Say what? If you haven’t seen Despicable Me, let me bring you up to speed…


That’s how I felt when this arrived:


Not fluffy - just AWESOME!

YES!!! It’s one of the first donated laptops to arrive. Katherine Walther Hodges, a friend from high school, sent us this perfect Acer. Of course my photog skills leave a lot to be desired, but you get the idea.

Response to the laptop drive has been great. We’re collecting comps from law offices, home offices, friends, neighbors, schools, and – last but not least – Maggie’s tweeps.

All told I think right now we’ve blown my original goal out of the water with …. wait for it…. drum roll….


10 Laptops!

 

We’re well on our way to having a laptop for each teacher.  Once we’ve got that we’ll be working toward a computer lab for the kids.

 

I bet we could fill that lab by the end of February .

What do you think?  Can you help us?  T-13 days and counting!

contact me – lisareneemarshall <at> gmail – to donate 🙂

Laptop Drive Update

Our little impromptu laptop drive is gaining momentum. I want to share a little something I just read that sums up how important this technology is to us:

 

“You see what a difference it makes when kids get the tools that enable them to learn, and you never forget it.”

– Mark Foster

former VP of engineering @ One Laptop Per Child

 

The same goes for our teachers. They need the tools that enable them to teach – plain and simple.

– Lisa

%d bloggers like this: