At last I am writing, after what feels like several months since I left Peru. In reality, it has only been one month since that difficult day when I left hundreds of wonderful people I came to know there. 2015 is shaping into a memorable one. I am lucky to have started working with ESL students from Mexico (and soon Colombia) in a school back here in Canada. I am supposed to speak to students in English only. I have used Spanish a bit to highlight health and safety topics, or in a couple moments to chat with the young kids who are feeling really homesick and have no energy at the end of the day to communicate these thoughts and feelings in English. I also speak with the teachers who are here as chaperones en español.
It is strange being back to a rainy spring in Canada, after leaving the end of a scorching summer in Peru. My work there over January, February and March kept me immersed in colours (through art) and words (through La Cometa Lectora). March brought the end of summer vacation and summer art workshops. Each week included leading three or four drawing or painting classes/workshops, some in the ICPNA (Peruvian-American Cultural Institute) and the rest in the village of La Ladrillera. Kids and their parents in all programs were very appreciative of the creative activity time during the long, hot days. Many beautiful pieces of artwork are now adorning family living rooms, while drawings from La Ladrillera will be used to illustrate a children’s storybook to be released later this year, The Perfect Gift.
The art exposition at the end of February in the ICPNA; seen here are values painted on wood, which now adorn the different Project Chiclayo program locations. These were completed largely by the 12-14 year olds, although all the workshop participants learned how to draw 3-D letters.
The values (l-r): faith, friendship, happiness and union/togetherness.
The kids loved the “Wavy Line” project and learned that it takes patience!
Below those drawings, are collages created with recycled paper scraps and then depicted in the form of a drawing.
I am finally getting over the worst of reverse culture shock (and weather, given opposite seasons),
and remembering all these experiences is bitter-sweet, although mostly sweet.
Hope you enjoyed looking at the artwork–each piece (or draft) has quite the story behind it!!