New books (still thanks to Rosita) include several bilingual fairy tales, 'Freight Train' by Donald Crews, 'My Friends' by Taro Gomi, Eric Carles' 'A Busy Spider', a hardback of Latin American Rhymes and to give Kyle and I inspiration 'The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling'. We have been reading a children's version of the Popul Vuh with the kids, 'The Tin Soldier' and a host of other stories. We've also embroidered a tiny rug, made little bead bichos or bugs, a three dimensional cyclorama, a woman of grains, sea-themed mobiles from "fomy" (a weird material the kids love here), paper boats and a board game with forfeits and questions taken from books in the library. We finished our month of clowning on a high note with over fifty kids, taking shelter from the rain under the municipal arches while we read 'From Head to Toe' by Carle. We will continue this alternative outdoor session on the first Saturday of each month.
Huge thank you to Irene de Passarelli for our first computer and Desiree and Leo for contributing a further three (and to Pablo Guggenheim of the Riecken Foundation for putting them in touch with us). Our suite is coming together! And to Lucy Passarelli for the photocopier: the kids love watching it work almost as much as colouring in the pictures it produces. Also thanks to the mayor of San Antonio, Elwin Hernandez, for lending us loudspeakers every weekend for the past month to promote and play the music for our clown show. To Rodrigo, again, for helping Kyle to set up as an independent merchant, which will allow us to 'rent' our logo to Azotea who generously want to donate some proceeds from their coffee to Caldo de Piedra. A hearty gracias to Katie and Ricardo Pokorny for thinking of us.
This month Kyle is working on a report for 'Businesses for Education' called Educational Atlas, researching 41 schools in the departamento of Sacatepéquez. You can read a summary of his findings by the end of November at atlaseducativo.blogspot.com: just email us for the registration name and password. While progress in education is being made, overall the conditions (from poor sanitation to classroom numbers) that most children are being taught in make for depressing reading.