Project Shine 2013 Activity Summary

ps 2013 01

Sunday, July 14, 2013 11:52:21 AM

We're in Rongshui now!

Today we did some sight-seeing at the Guilin "Elephant Trunk Hill" park, some of us took the boat ride along the river and took many photos.

Then after lunch we took the bus to Rongshui for about 4-5 hours. It was indeed a bumpy and windy road, some members did feel dizzy, one parent did feel a big headache and were not feeling well afterwards. She rested during dinner time.

After dinner we had team meetings and we shared about what our "love language" is, it was a good team bonding exercise as we get to know each other's background a bit more.

After the team meeting then it was time for lesson prep for tomorrow!

We are all very excited about tomorrow's opening ceremony and first time meeting with the students !!!

July 16, 2013 11:04 am (ET)

It has been a busy 2 days, yesterday we had the opening ceremony at Rongshui Secondary School. The students were really excited to meet with our English teachers from Canada and USA.

In the opening ceremony, I gave a speech to encourage them to use this opportunity to speak and listen to English. I've also passed out some bookmarks that have the Canadian Anthem lyrics in English and French, and our team sang it to them. Then the students sang to us the Chinese anthem song, we both enjoyed it very much.

On the first day of teaching (yesterday), our teachers were just getting to know the student's English level, they have given them English names.

Our team members get to experience eating with the students in the cafeteria, the food is very good and healthy, lots of vegetables and fruits.

In our nightly team meetings our team members shared about their experience teaching on the first day and it was a great time of sharing for all.

The weather has been interesting as it goes between really sunny and hot, to suddenly raining really hard and pouring. But it was ok, most of us have umbrellas and the bus would come pick us up very close to where we eat.

On the second day of teaching (today), we took a group photo in the morning with our Project Shine t-shirt (thanks to Angie for the design!) I will use this photo to make it into a certificate for the students at the end of Project Shine.

July 19, 2013

Today is Friday and we are finishing off the English lessons for the week.

This morning we tried on the Traditional Miao Tribe clothing, even though it was super-hot and sweaty, but we had a blast trying on the beautiful dance clothes the students used for special MiaoTribe festival.

We've also taken the class photos of each class this morning.

In the last few days our Project Shine team English teachers have been teaching with their full hearts and mind, being flexible and coming up with good lesson planning if the level of the students were too low for the curriculum.

After these 5 days, the students are bonding more with the teachers now, we start to hang out together even after class time during our free time.

Among our own teams, we also have been having "Praise Nights" and hang out nights, I think our own team members have bonded very much as well!

I really appreciate the team members and leaders this year as each one of them are so dedicated to the students and it really shows.

For the last 3 days we have been teaching the classes Christmas songs, and making Christmas decorations in the class. One teacher even made a Christmas tree out of water bottles (thanks to Chauncey!)

It is kind of ironic and funny at the same time that we are singing Christmas songs in the heat! But also it is a very beautiful sound to hear when I listen to each class' singing.

Today is my brother Emanuel's birthday! During lunch time all the students sang Happy Birthday to him! It was a very special moment! Tonight the English teachers will have a dinner together celebrating his birthday! Interestingly enough, today is also Nelson Mandela's birthday!

That's it for now, I will update you more during the weekend about our Cultural day and Home visit!

July 22, 3:56 am (ET)

Today is Monday, our second week of teaching already!

During the weekend we experienced many things:

Saturday Morning- Cultural Day: Each class had prepared a Christmas song for performance and it was a competition to see who had the most creativity in their performance!

Some used dancing, props and movements, skits to act out the Christmas songs while singing it! It was amazing to see how much energy each student has and how creative their performances are!

Also we explained to them why we are here in China, it is because of love, and we encouraged them to pass on this love to others in their life.

Then Saturday afternoon we went to the home visit to a girl we named "Mandy". Mandy's mom was blind since she was 4 years old, so Mandy along with her brother and sister had to take care of the family since they are young, their father is not in the picture right now.

Mandy had graduated and going to college right now, but during the summer she and her brother had to go to Guang Zhou to work (they can make more money there) to support her tuition fees and living expenses, plus they have to take care of their mom. So she would have to bring her mom to Guang Zhou as well when she works. She is studying in the nursing field and she hopes to take care of her mom with the skills that she'll be learning, and hope that one day her mom can see her face!

We are all very touched by how optimistic and joyful she is even though she is poor and have to work so hard. At night time during our team meeting, some of our members really reflected upon how as North American young people we really take things for granted.

Sunday afternoon the students took the teachers out for lunch and other fun activities such as climbing a hill, exploring a small limestone cave, swimming in the swimming pool, playing near the river, BBQ, spicy noodles, etc.

Sunday night we had the English movie night where we watched a movie called "Wreck it Ralph" and we enjoyed it very much.

Everyone had a blast during the weekend but also felt very tired!

July 24, 2013 11:10 am (ET)

We can't believe it is already Wednesday and tomorrow is our last full day with the students!

Tonight we had the 2nd Cultural night - a really good bonding/fun time with the students. Each class performed something special for everyone such as song or dance or skits. Our team get to see the traditional Miao Tribe dancing tonight, it was very beautiful indeed. Our English teachers also prepared a Chinese song and a dance to show the students as well!

Tomorrow - We have one last full day tomorrow, it will be very eventful with Easter Egg hunt, Birthday party (with cake), Lunch with the principle, Closing ceremony. It will be a very emotional day for everyone. Many students already began to cry today as we sing songs together. We know we will miss each other very much!