Friday, April 21, 2017

Dutch Bay School : Part II

June, Pauline and Dee sit with primary kids,  Dutch Bay

We visit with the lower grade school children now settled in their seats.    At some point Dee and Pauline start writing the countries we represent and some of our names on the blackboard and the kids take the chalk to write their names. 

Dee writes our countries and names....Dutch Bay School

Dutch Bay School,  Sri Lanka

Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

I notice that we have used up all the chalk.....  but it is a good way to overcome the language barrier and the teacher stands back bemused.  She is a beautiful young teacher and I bet they are all in love with her. 

Lower grade teacher and students, Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

Copybook in Sinhalese,  Dutch Bay School

Dutch Bay School,  Sri Lanka

Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

Multiplication tables, Dutch Bay School

Pupils at Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

 We visit each classroom and it looks like some real learning is going on in this small schoolhouse.

Pupils at Dutch Bay, Sri Lanka

Poster in Sinhalese,  Dutch Bay School

English teacher with older pupils, Dutch Bay School

English teacher visits pupils, Dutch Bay School

Dutch Bay School,  Sri Lanka

Poster, Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

English Lesson book,  Dutch Bay School, Sri Lanka

The children are released for recreation as we get ready to leave.  Earlier we got a fancy jump rope demonstration by the little girl below.   I notice that the rope is the only sign of outdoor equipment for games.  They make good use of the rope for "tug of war" as well.  I imagine that it was the property of the fishermen before it found a new use. 

 This is a very low income school.  We saw much better endowed schools along the way .... especially the Muslim institutions which are helped by Muslim businessmen and have better facilities and options.   Despite this the rooms are cheerful and welcoming.

There seems little electricity available. ... no overhead fans or lights  on,  no glass in the windows....only some heavy grid to keep out the birds and let the air in.   

 Some of the children I see have very tattered state uniforms and oversized ties.   Some of the ties are just pieces attached with a safety pin. However, I notice that most everyone is clean and neat and hair is combed and braided for the girls. 

I think the six of us who chose to visit today are inspired by these lovely children who we might call disadvantaged.  Despite their  modest circumstances, I feel like these kids are going to "make it" in the world.
 They seem to have that tenacity of spirit that you don't see everyday,  that Phoenix-like quality of rising from the ashes.  

  But maybe the trick is they don't see the ashes.  

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