Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Unexpected craft discovery

I don't know how to teach craft, I am French teacher but in brainstorming with generous ladies such as Lisa, Michele, Molly and MariaLouisa and the jewelry drive at Loyola U. Md I brought supplies and ideas to the Foyer Notre Dame de Lourdes.
We have a running competition in designing original cards that is triggering some unsuspected talents. In addition,  "les Petits" , the little ones 3 to7  LOVE to make "bracelets et colliers" , " les Moyens" ( the Middle ones, 8 - 14 or so) love to make colorful gimp bracelets or key chains and now five boys among the Moyens stand out in their dexterity and are making beautiful solidarity-friendship bracelets of a different sort.  The Zanmi band  ( Zanmi means friend in creole)  use car parts easily found in Haiti and currently worn before decoration by men on their wrists to heal their aches.  My hope is that Loyola students will market them so that funds are raised to help pay for the education of the 30 teenagers that live here at the Foyer.
However what is surfacing is a totally unexpected aspect at least for me: I am getting to know the children much better. What is revealed is not only their creativity and resourcefulness but also their perseverance, dexterity, ability to concentrate, their neatness and mindfulness in helping others learn. Some of the end products show aspects of the children that their caregivers are happily surprised to discover and it gives an immense sense of pride to the child himself. It is such an exciting twist to my work here.

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