Contributor - Valeria Torres
The day that we as a group had been anxiously waiting for months was here, the first day of camp for the students of Shvanidzor!
We woke up one hour earlier to get ready for the first day logistics, and even though we did not know what to expect from the students, as this was a new village this year- we were beyond excited to get everything ready for the day.
Even before 9 hit the clock, we began to slowly see parents and students approaching the school. With nametags and stickers ready, we began to divide the students into classes according to their ages, amongst the four core classes that we would be teaching- Art, Technology, Health/Science and Social Issues. A highlight from the morning core classes was the fact that there were several children in the 4-7 age group who had never attended school before whose parents warned us about using the word “school” as they were afraid of it.
Thirty-five students showed up to camp today, and we are expecting about ten more tomorrow. With classes done at 2:15 pm, we as a team had lunch and free time before doing the afternoon electives that included volleyball, card games, badminton, dance and interactive activities. At dismissal time, we had several of the younger students crying to their parents because they didn’t want to leave us.
In the afternoon after a dinner of dolma we all went to a villager’s home to hear his daughter, who is a student at the Music Conservatory in Yerevan, sing.
It was a wonderful afternoon filled with much love, laughter, food and conversations about the different cultures and birthplaces of the members of our group.