We all went to our placement yesterday and were expected to dress in our outfits we bought. In India teachers are expected to be treated with respect. The female teachers here wear the salwar kameez or a saree. This is considered more formal clothing.
There are two types of pants that go with the salwar kameez, loose and tight. Here I am with the tight pants on. This is before wiggling the rest of the pant leg over my foot on the one side. I let the sales girl pick out everything except the tops. I chose a top and had her choose the rest.
Here we are in our work outfits. We bought two. I will show you the rest tomorrow. From left to right we are, Patrice, Alecia, Blair, and Wendy.
These are our chefs making saag paneer. After getting the spinach, saag, ready they left the kitchen. I took a piece of another vegetable they hadn’t chopped up yet and ate it. AFTER THAT, what an idiot I can be sometimes, I asked if it was okay to eat it. They said yes but only after it has been washed. 6 pepto bismal tablets later I was back in business. I did not get sick either. I am writing this the next day. I had been so careful up to that point too.
For the first two dinners they made us what I consider unhealthy types of American food. Pizza, chips, soda, veggie burgers, and fries. Sean has LOVED it all. At breakfast I asked if we could have India food instead for dinners. They told me that they were making the food for Sean, lol, so he would feel comfortable. How thoughtful that was! Sean thinks they make American food better than Americans. I have to admit, the fries were something special.
We are having dal instead of pizza tonight.
Vickey has 5 colors of turban he wears. He interchanges them. His beard is also long, coiled up, and pinned close.
These photos are the lane we take walking to the school in the slum. Every single person we saw said hello (almost all said it is English) and smiled. The feeling we got was very warm and welcoming.
India is a place splashed with color everywhere.
Sean and I are learning to play the Indian game Coco.
It is a tag-like game with 2 teams. One team crouches down with every other person who is crouching facing opposite the person next to him or her. The other team runs around the people crouching tapping some of them on the back of their head. You can only tap them when they are facing away from you. Once tapped you can get up and chase the person or anyone else on their team. If you catch them they are out. You can sit down when you want and let someone else from your team be tagged and get up and run.
This is the group Sean and I are working with for the first 2 hours during our placement. They are 2nd and 3rd grade students who need extra help. I am to teach them science (can you believe the luck!) for the first hour. I was asked to teach them about the nutrition and what the different food molecules do in your body. Sean will be tutoring math for the 2nd hour.
The first group of children is where Jim and Alecia work for their 3 hours. The second is where Sean and I work for the last hour. They are the little ones. Two of them got into a fight over who could sit next to Sean, so I separated them and put one on either side of Sean.
Here we are at the large Vidya school.
This is a chemistry lab, all funds for constructing and running this school come from donors, many of them corporate donors like GE.
The school was started by a woman who was horrified to learn that many of the slum children, particularly the girls, were not receiving any education.
The students learn computer coding starting in 1st grade.
The school is a gem in the middle of a slum area. It made my heart feel bigger to see what these people were doing to help these kids. I feel really fortunate to be even a small part of it.
As we were driving back I saw this girl, she ran across the busy street and here she is walking alone. The striking contrast there compared to all the school children we saw is heart breaking.
For the first half of the women’s issues class Sean had a lesson in how to play cricket. He loved it.