About fifteen minutes downhill from Xandari by foot, the primary school at Tacacori serves first through sixth graders from the local community. Xandari has collaborated with the school on multiple occasions in the past, and also regularly cares for their grounds (mowing the lawn, etc.). This semester, third and fourth graders don’t have an art class in their normal schedule, so it seemed a perfect opportunity for James and me to go over and do a week-long art project with the kids.
Of course, I stuck with what I know best for art projects with young children, and decided upon papier-mâché and painting on little cardboard canvases, just like I had done in the Galápagos a couple years ago. James and I went to the third and fourth grade classes during their Spanish classes and for about an hour and twenty minutes each a day we showed them how to use newspaper, glue, and a balloon to create the body of a bird. Then, with recycled cardboard from Xandari, we gave them canvases to paint on as well as the materials to make beaks, wings, tails, and feet for the birds.
It’s hard to take photos when your hands are covered with watery glue or bright paint, but James and I used our phones to snap some pictures of the kids’ creations to share here. In this post, I have a slideshow of the work the third graders did, and James will share his photos and experience teaching excited students solely in Spanish in a future post.