Another term has flown by and it was a great one at MICS. We’ve now completed 5 out of the 9 terms we’ve committed to. Here are some of the highlights from the past three months…
We started off the term with another teacher inservice day. Our theme was “around the world”. I taught some games related to learning countries and using a map. Each class received a world map for their room and a new country was introduced each week in library.
During the first week of school, we walked the five minutes to the airstrip to watch not one, but three planes land. This was a first for many of the students and fun to watch their excitement. It’s moments like those that the differences between here and Canada are highlighted for me. There were no permission forms, no money to collect, no school buses or parents volunteers. All that separated the kids from the planes a few dozen feet away were their teachers.
Once or twice a term we have a special theme day where we set academics aside and have some fun. Some visitors from Canada ran a special circus day. It included everything from face painting, learning how to juggle, making animal masks, crafts and relay races.
The Meeting House Team
We were very excited to welcome a leadership team from our church The Meeting House. This was the first African experience for several of them, including our lead pastor Bruxy. Although we only had a few days with them in Macha we enjoyed taking them to church, showing them around MICS and catching up over several meals together. With the help of Daddy, Caleb made Bruxy a Lego replica of The Meeting House.
Nina and Maya Cavey stayed with us for another week after the rest of the team left. The boys loved having a “big sister” around. Our friends at Push The Rock held a 5k race for the community that Nina, Sarah (our boarding manager) and I walked together.
Macha was recently the recipient of the first disc golf course in Zambia (learn more here). This has been a great addition to our life in the bush. Several times a week we are either out on the course or practicing at MICS (we also got 3 baskets). Micah loves to play as well, Caleb keeps score on his clipboard when he’s not playing and Nathaniel happily watches from the stroller. It’s also a great way to catch up with friends over a round or two. It’s been fun to see the game catching on in the community.
Over 3 months we celebrated Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, my birthday, Caleb and Micah’s 6th birthday and Nathaniel’s first birthday. The twins had a birthday lunch after school with a few of their friends. They enjoyed some treats, “pin the monkey on the palm tree” and a balloon game which lasted all of 10 seconds. Turns out balloons and dry Macha ground don’t mix well. To celebrate Nathaniel we invited the boarding kids over to sing happy birthday and enjoy a cupcake. He had no interest in the cupcake but was fun for him to be surrounded by his big brothers and sisters.
I’ve been continuing to work with my small groups of students on phonics and reading. I’ve also been working with Ms. Mungo, our grade two teacher and helping her learn some new strategies. She will be taking over some of my groups next term so I can work one-on-one with a few students who need the extra attention. I’ve been grateful for her help and I’ve also been really encouraged that ten of my students have made enough progress that they will no longer be needing my support next term. While I love my job, working myself out of one is always the goal!
I’m continuing to help with chapel a few times a week. This term we did a “MICS Hero” program where students were nominated from each class every week. The students had to show the character trait we had been focusing on, they received a certificate and two lucky students got to wear our special hero hats for the day.
In June, Joel and I started leading and hosting the Alpha course with our good friends Corie and Eric Thuma. Each week thirteen of us gather to watch a video, share a meal and have a discussion about some aspect of the Christian faith. We’ve been so encouraged by the participation, the questions being asked and the friendships that are forming. The course will continue until the end of September.
Now we’re on a four week term break for the month of August. The campus is very quiet but we are enjoying the slower pace of life and lots of time together as a family. While it’s a nice break, we look forward to the school coming alive again in a few weeks.