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January 15

Monday, January 15, Day 8

This morning, less people participated in yoga due to the frigid desert climate. We all made it to breakfast at 8:15 then headed to our small groups for check-in. Because it is Monday, the kids were in school and we did not want to distract them by being around their classrooms, so we spent some time picking up trash around campus instead of painting the fence. We then divided into five groups to create lesson plans for the children in the afternoon. Each group decided on a different activity–dancing, friendship bracelet making, games to help with English, ABCs, and pictionary. Then we had a chai break followed by a short break in which some of us went to prepare vegetables for lunch. Before lunch, we gathered again to share Life Maps, then we had lunch outside with the school kids.

After lunch, we had a break before heading to the school to teach our lessons. We went over at around 1:45 and worked with the different grades in 3 30-minute interval rotations. We all found that being teachers was not as straight-forward as we expected, and we all had to be flexible and think of creative ways to engage the children. The youngest kids were very rambunctious while the grade above them was more well-behaved. It was apparent in the older grades that the boys are more dominant in the classroom than the girls, who were quiet and stayed in the back.

When school ended, we regrouped and enjoyed some pomegranates, papaya, and lots of bananas. We talked about our experiences working with the kids and Coach Baker began our compliment circle with some kind words about the birthday girl, Caroline Ryan. Caroline continued with her compliments about our Dragons instructor Rebecca, and so on. We hope to continue and finish the circle throughout the rest of our time in India.

During free time, we had fun playing with the children, braiding each other’s hair, and doing laundry. We then had a meditation before dinner. At dinner 11 of Vatsalya’s students and workers were blessed because tonight they leave for Rajasthan’s kickboxing competition. After dinner, we gathered together on the basketball court and shared Life Maps and research topics. Afterwards, Ellie and Augusta struggled in the cold to finish writing this.

Good Night!
Ellie and Augusta