During a recent visit to Villard, school director Saimplice informed me that the school we built with all your help is designated as a building of refuge by the government. Director Saimplice went on to me, the school is considered one of the safest buildings in the area and was recently used by over 50 people during Hurricane Irma. In addition to being an extremely safe building, it is also over three feet above ground providing a dry place during flooding.
Thanks to all our supporters, donors and the designers who helped made this project a success and a very special thanks to our volunteer supervisors who came to Haiti at their own expense to help with the school construction.
Our volunteer supervisors were Richard de Campo, David Murray, Scott Poeppel, Allan Cunningham, David Reichow, Fred Ireland, Adam Hall, and Tim Myers.
We have started the construction of the school in Villard!
Tim has been working hard down in Haiti these past few weeks, buying materials and finding good construction managers. He has trained teachers on the latest post-earthquake building techniques and they have begun to pour concrete and are really diving into the construction.
Check out our facebook page for more pictures: facebook.com/haitischoolproject
Thanks for all of your donations and support thus far. We are collecting donations to make sure that construction can continue until the school is finished! Donate now for matching funds and make your donation go twice as far!
On the last day of the workshop we spent time working on things that the teachers wanted to learn more about. One of the main things teachers wanted to do was to see an example science lesson. Over the week we did a language arts lesson by having the teachers translate a poem. We did a math lesson about linear algebra where the teachers derived the formula themselves. Eric also did an example social studies lesson about Christopher Columbus including hooks to get students interested in the lessons and connecting the lesson to the knowledge that the students already have. The teachers enjoyed these lesson so much that they also wanted to do a science lesson as well. To give an example of a science lesson Eric had the teachers do an experiment in buoyancy by making boats! This was a lot of fun and the teachers had a great time, not to mention the kids in the schoolyard who were also very excited! It is important that science is fun and exciting and not too abstract so that students can really get into it and learn about the world around them.
Eric also did a summary of the week and after lunch we had a end of the week ceremony to give the teachers certificates. In the end we awarded certificates to 54 teachers in Villard!
The ceremony was a beautiful one with a speech from Principal Saimplice, Alina who organized the project and two of the teachers who expressed heartfelt gratitude. All the teachers received certificates from Haiti School Project for completing the workshop. It was an emotional day. Everyone was so happy with our time together but also very sad to say good-bye!
Today was a slow day with activities taking longer than expected but the teachers are grasping the ideas.
We did one activity relating to science exemplifying the strength of knowledge involved in group work. Eric also did an example lesson of a math class by having the teachers figure out a linear equation. Instead of simply giving an equation, it is important that students create it themselves so that they can really understand how it works, what it means and why it is relevant to them.
We went over the basics of a good lesson plan and started a social studies lesson that will be important for tomorrow’s activity “preparing a lesson plan”.