Saturday, March 14, 2015

Happy Pi Day!

I just had to make pie!

Maybe I'm just procrastinating instead of working on my paper for Dynamics of Biblical Change, a course I'm taking through CCEF. It's an amazing course, by the way. I'll get back to work after sharing a pi story with you…

When I was a teacher in Toronto, there was a little boy in my Junior Kindergarten class who had recently arrived from China and spoke hardly any English. It was his first time at the painting easel and he didn't seem to know what to paint. I tried to explain to him that he could paint whatever he wanted and left to work with other students. When I looked back he had painted huge colourful numbers: 3.141592653...I can't remember exactly where he stopped but he filled the page. He knew pi to more digits than I did! I wish I would have taken a picture. Apparently his grandfather worked with him for long hours in the public library. If he knew pi at four, I wonder what he is up to now that he is eleven.

Whether you are celebrating pi day or not, I hope you have a great week-end!

Marcie Cooper

Monday, March 2, 2015

Dominican Independence and Culture: Part 3

Hello again!

Here are a few final pictures from the preschool/kindergarten fair last week. They're a bit random but show some popular aspects of the current culture.

The staple food--rice and beans:
It's tempting to put little hands in those dishes!
The Tourist Zone (a couple of hours away from us):
At the beach
(They probably have never been there in real life)
The Botanical Zone:
National bird: Cigua Paloma
National Flower: Mahogany

We can't forget the national sport, baseball!

Ready to play
Paul actually spent part of Independence Day playing baseball in an Ark vs. ANIJA staff game. He also went to watch the ANIJA boys team play in the Copa Coca Cola soccer tournament. Our guys love soccer even more than baseball here!

I hope you have enjoyed getting a glimpse into the Dominican culture over the past few days. Here are links to the first two parts in case you missed them.

Dominican Independence and Culture: Part 1
Dominican Independence and Culture: Part 2


Saturday, February 28, 2015

Dominican Independence and Culture: Part 2


Here are some more pictures from the fair that our preschool and kindergarten students put on for Independence Day. These once take us back to the time of the Taínos, the indigenous people who were here long before the Spanish arrived on the island in 1492.

"First Inhabitants"
Casabe bread made from yuca (cassava)
Honey and root vegetables still popular today
Commonly used mortar and pestle
Taíno costumes
Visiting third graders
The Taínos eventually died out but remnants of their art and culture remain. Tourist areas are filled with paintings like these that copy their drawings.

Part 3 of the Independence Day fair will be coming on Monday. 
Have a great week-end!


Friday, February 27, 2015

Dominican Independence and Culture: Part 1

Hello and Happy Dominican Independence Day!

Today is the 27th of February and the day that Dominicans celebrate their independence from Haitian rule. Our preschool and kindergarten classes put on a fair this week in celebration of the holiday. Check out the Founding Fathers:

Our Duarte, Sánchez and Mella
Do they look like the originals?
Juan Pablo Duarte (top)
Francisco del Rosario Sánchez (bottom left)
and Matías Ramón Mella (bottom Right)
Some little girls dressed up in traditional costumes and other kids played popular instruments.

Gr. 6 student playing the drum
Gr. 3 student helping on the güira
Drums are fun!
I can play a maraca!
Other classes came to tour the displays, hear the music, and watch a short video.  My little JK said it was the best day of school ever!

Watching a cultural video
Playing with Dominican Pesos
There was much more to see but I'll save it for next time. Stop by later or sign up on the right to receive future posts by e-mail.

Enjoy your day!


Friday, January 9, 2015

Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas

Happy New Year!

We are thankful that we could spend the holidays with my family in the Bahamas on a little island called Green Turtle Cay. It's only accessible by boat and most people get around on golf carts.

We live on an island here in the Dominican Republic but it's nothing like this island. In Green Turtle Cay there are only about five hundred people and no natural fresh water. There are only a few shops and groceries are very expensive. It was relaxing though! We enjoyed boating, fishing, swimming, snorkeling, and more!

Turtle watching was my favourite. I stayed away from the sharks.

We also enjoyed lots of time playing and snuggling with cousins.

and a New Year's Parade called Junkanoo.

The kids especially loved Sunday School and couldn't wait to go back.

Thank you, Mom and Dad! It was a great trip!


Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

Just missing one brother and sister-in-law
We love our little actors!

For unto you is born this day in the city of David 
a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
Luke 2:11

Marcie and family

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Working in the Library

Hello again!

This fall has brought a lot of changes for me since I've gone back to school with the kids to teach in the library. It's been fun but busy and challenging!

Flag lowering at the end of the day

We've been having a contest in the library to see which class can read silently for the longest amount of time. It is not an easy task since they are very loud by nature and love to talk to each other. Here are the winners! They were the first class to make it to the goal of reading silently for twenty minutes. Now they're listening to books on tape, reading with buddies, and improving their writing. 

Third grade students with new book donations 

It's been encouraging to see kids having fun reading especially since many of them come from homes where parents are illiterate or have very low levels of education. Even ones who told me that reading was boring are finding books that they can enjoy.

They love reading!

This group is actually reading!

Loud fourth Graders caught reading quietly

In a few weeks, a teacher will return from maternity leave and I'll have less responsibilities in the library. I still plan to help out though. I just love seeing kids learning to love to read!

Happy reading and Happy Thanksgiving to those of you who are celebrating it this week!

Marcie Cooper