Friday, May 21, 2010

Los niños en primero de primaria

No he escrito mucho sobre los niños con quienes trabajo aquí--la mayoría tienen sies años y son en primero de primaria. Tal vez es porque me tocan de una manera fuerte, que me abruma. Lo que comparten es tan grande, vivo, profundo, y variado.

Corren a la escuala con sus hermanos mayores, agarrándose de las manitos, evadiendo perros y autos hasta llegar a la clase doblados con agotamiento exagerado, sin poder respirar, como si hubieron corrido una maratón.

Hacen cosas como tocar mi espalda, entonces esperan con su mano, hacer dibujitos con sus dedos en mi espalda, entonces esperan otra vez, y finalmente me estiran de la camiseta hasta que me dé la vuelta. Me muestran sus dibujos, les digo, "Muy bien, sigue," y ellos regresan a sus mesas y escogen un nuevo lapiz de color.

Hacemos una lectura sobre la comida. "¿De donde viene?" les preguntamos.

"¡Jesus!", "¡mi mamá!", "¡El presidente!", nos dicen, y no puedo parar de reirme.

Una noche había un reunion de padres y profesores que duró hasta muy tarde, hasta que todo estuviera oscuro. Edwin, un estudiante, se acercó y me presentó a su hermanito, Papuch. Edwin me parecía cansado y le pregunté si su casa estaba lejos.

"Si," me dijo, "muy lejos."

"¿Cuan lejos?" le pregunté.

"Diez horas," me respondió.

Y esto me toca otra vez. Miro a sus ojos grandes y cafés, a su cara morena y suave. Es un grande distancia para recorrer con pequeños pies.

I haven´t written much about the kids I work with at school since I´ve started my volunteering their in January--most of them six years old, in the first grade. Perhaps it is because they touch me in such a way that it overwhelms me. Their sharing is so wide, so colorful, so deep, and so varied.

They run to school with their older siblings, holding hands, dodging dogs and cars. Then they fall into the classroom, completely out of breath, bending over with exaggeration as if they had just run a marathon.

They do things like touch my back while I am working with another student, then wait with their hand, draw squiggles on my back, then wait again, tug on my shirt, then wait until I finally turn around. They hold up the picture they are drawing. I say, "Good job, keep going", and they go back to their tables and pick up another colored pencil.

They tell me that their mom washes clothes and that it´s their job to put them away, or that their mom is sick so they visit her in her bed, or that their mom is in Spain, working, they don´t know what she does, but they haven´t seen her for a while.

We do a lesson on food. Where does it come from? "Jesus!", "My Mom!", "The President!", they say, and I can´t stop laughing.

Then one night the teachers had a meeting with the parents and it was late and dark when everything was over. Edwin came over to me and introduced me to his little brother, Papooch. Edwin looked tired and I asked him if he had far to walk home. "Ya," he said, "really far."

"How far?" I asked.

"Ten hours" he said.

I´m overwhelmed again as I look into his big brown eyes and study his soft brown face. That´s quite a long way for little feet to go.

1 comment:

  1. Hola Jenna! Es su prima, Erin. I have not studied Spanish in a long time so your writing helps me remember bits and pieces. I just caught up with your blog and it is wonderful! I hope you are doing well!