July 6, 2016 – Wednesday

Yesterday, I wasn’t able post to the blog because we weren’t able to connect to the Wifi. After battling the Wifi on several devices, I somehow deleted the post – epic fail 🙂

Tuesday in engineering class, the students created towers out of index cards. Given limited instructions and only one pack of cards, the groups competed to create the tallest tower possible. After each class, the winning group was determined and they were recognized during the recreation session. Today, the class reviewed the card tower activity and applied the principles of engineering to each step in their process. By the end of the day, each student understood that in order to complete the task, s/he needed to: 1. Brainstorm ideas, 2. Sketch an idea, 3. Create a plan, 4. Build the model, 5. Test what has been built, 6. Discuss the outcomes and ways to improve, and 7. Try again if it was a failure or if there was another option.

Student Spotlight: Charmila, a second year camper, stands out from the rest. She was instrumental in bringing her group together to build their tower. She also expertly explained the steps of the engineering process to the entire camp in both English and Kreyol, which is a major accomplishment for her even as a returner. Her charisma and continued eagerness to learn embody the values that we look to instill in our campers.

Today was also the first day of the afternoon session. Over 60 alumni campers from 2009 through last year filled the auditorium. Shaina separated them into age groups (10-12, 13-15, and 16+) and immediately began the fun, starting with a game that tested their English vocabulary. We quickly saw that the older kids were full of confidence and it was hilarious to see the younger kids gather to try to defeat the older ones. In the end, it was the youngest group that prevailed! Shaina explained the activities for the remaining weeks and the alumni ended the session with a t-shirt. Clearly ETE camp is having an impact when alumni return and are excited to be there.

At the home, us counselors keep ourselves occupied with more games, such as UNO and Taboo and last night, the group took a short walk, exploring Hinche. We still play hide and seek with the electricity – on Monday evening, we lost it around 8pm, leaving us with no fans running that night. Today, we laughed about how in four days, we’ve eaten enough rice and beans to feed a small army, so our cook graciously offered to cook mayi moulen (creamy cornmeal/polenta) for a change of pace.

New games, new songs, new faces. In these first days, there certainly is a sense of familiarity; yet [good] change at ETE camp 2016. Here’s to Thursday!

— Jess D.

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