Sunday, December 7, 2014

"For Haiti with Love" by Elodie LeNezet

As many of you already know, I went to Haiti again this year, for the 4th time. I have had the chance to find a strong support from the school, my friends, my students and friends of the school to help me make this wonderful opportunity happen each year.

Some of you might not know why I go there every year so allow me to tell you a bit about my experience.

I go to the same school every year, l’Ecole St-Barthélémy, which runs from preschool to high school and enrolls about 900 students. The official language in Haiti is Creole as well as French. With Creole being the language spoken at home, students arrive at the school and learn French there. Even though most teachers speak French, they still need help to fully master it and this is what I do. I organize workshops in French grammar, conjugaison, and spelling to help them with their French, both for their personal and professional use.

In the morning, I visit classrooms and spent time observing teachers during class; I observe the activities they do and their interactions with their students. In the afternoon, I conduct the training.
I have been extremely happy this year to observe some of the things we covered during the past trainings being used in the classroom as tools. I have seen happier and more engaged students and happier teachers. This was really rewarding to actually see that the concepts we had learned previously were applied correctly by the teachers. It felt like I had done something helpful for them. They were extremely eager to hear more advice when we talked about the workshops.

Hopefully, I will be able to go again next Thanksgiving. 
I have already been asked to work on certain grammatical points. :-)