06 Jul A Day at the William Botnan School: Students
Written by Lucía Dávila, Guatemala City, Guatemala
Classes start at 7:30 a.m., and the children always show up with smiles on their faces. The classrooms give a sacred sense in which respect and solidarity are their most basic foundations.
Students come from all over the village, and they walk through different
paths to get to school. Therefore, they
change their shoes or go barefoot to keep the floors clean.
They always greet each other and ask for permission to
come inside. As soon as they arrive, they start reviewing their lessons while
they wait for their teachers.
The school bell rings… they grab their toothbrushes
and wait in line for their teachers to give them some toothpaste. Then they
rush to the Pila (sink or wash tub).
They start the day by praying and singing while they
take turns leading the songs. They do it with an extraordinary enthusiasm and
devotion showed by their gestures and body movements, which express a feeling
of “home sweet home”.
Their schedules and subjects are different depending
on their grade, but all students join together for recess every morning from
10:00 to 10:30.
Before the students go out, the teachers give them a glass of incaparina (protein drink), mosh (oatmeal), or arróz con leche (rice and milk) and then they are ready to play. Some may buy more traditional homemade food sold by a lady waiting for them outside the school.
After recess, the entire school has math class from
10:30 to 11:30.
Pre-school and 1st grade leave to return home at 12:30. From
2nd grade to 6th grade, they leave at 12:30 to have lunch
at home, but they come back to school at 2:00 to finish at 4:00. (Except on
Fridays when no afternoon classes are held.)
When Teachers2Teachers-International is at the school,
all the students finish at 12:30 to create time for workshops and instruction