Team 161, Kunming, July 10

By Dixie

Thought for the day:
”If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of a  
year, plant trees; if in terms of a hundred years, teach the people.”

Photos for the day: (1) Example of the certificates received by students completing the 3-weeks of training. (2) The volunteers sing “If I Had a Hammer” at the closing ceremony.

I believe we are all feeling spent but satisfied, here at the end of the three week program.  Two more rides today to school on the bus driven by Mr. Qui: a last morning class, and then the afternoon Celebration Ceremony and Sharing with all 70 of us in the Teacher Training Program.

Corrine’s and my class engaged themselves in “Twenty Questions” and a “Dear Abby” kind of activity.  How responsive and lively the students are!  Ours brought in orange drinks, longan and lichees, peanuts and sunflower seeds for a mini-party at one of our breaks today. Outside in the Quadrangle we folk danced with another class.   
Then we returned to the classroom for a review of “Miss Mary Mack” and “The Noble Duke of York.”

For a quiet Finale, Corinne re-read to them a simple and charming book about “what is a friend?”

Riding the bus in the afternoon, we Global Volunteers practiced singing “If I had a Hammer,” and virtually reviewed the pattern of dance steps for “Les Saluts,” a French-Canadian fiddle tune. Our hope is that the room that Chris is arranging will be of suitable size for all to take part in dancing.

At the Ceremony, Chris translated for the Dignitaries.  Hu Di did her usual amazing alternation of Chinese and English paragraphs of speech. Each Volunteer briefly expressed his/her appreciation and heartfelt thanks to everyone who organized, sponsored and participated in the program at Kunming Teachers College. Scrolls of fine calligraphy with unique and personalized prose were presented to each Volunteer.

The seven classes were prepared to share their talents. 
Glenda’s class (all women), modeled beautiful colorful costumes representing some of the minority peoples of Yunnan.  Leon/Kathleen’s class told jokes in pairs.  John’s class sang “I Can Fly,” which they  
had translated into English from the original Chinese.  Josh/Carole’s class presented a skit about rascals (Jack and Daniel) who went into a French Restaurant.  Roles of other diners, waiters and Restaurant Manager were acted by the other students, with roles for Josh and Hu Di’s cousin Brent. Rachel/Margaret’s class sang Frere Jacques in French, English and Chinese. Rachel had worked hard to change the students’ pronunciation to “vous” from “wu.”  With a yellow paper prop constructed by Margaret and Rachel, the class sang “Yellow Submarine,” too.
 Martin’s class sang several songs, with members taking turns as Conductor.
 Corrine’s and my class sang “Blowin’ in the Wind,” with a harmony part.

A surprise for the Volunteers was a song about friendship from the students, in Chinese.

 Then the Volunteers shared their rendition of “If I had a Hammer.”  
They led the folkdance, “Les Saluts,” inviting everyone to join the dance in three concentric circles.

We parted from the students warmly and regretfully, as it was time to enjoy a last GV dinner together at an attractive restaurant across from Green Lake Park.  Tomorrow and Saturday we bid farewell to each other, but it ain’t over yet: Hu Di is kindly taking us on an outing to the “Wild Animal Park” of Kunming!  Hello, Pandas!

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