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July 2014 Update

Dear friends of Matènwa,

Happy 4th of July and thank you for a great school year! The entire MCLC community thanks you for your tremendous support. Because of you, we continue to see meaningful growth in all our programs.

NM7_P1 We have kept a flourishing garden throughout the school year. We sill have a lot of tomatoes, cabbages and carrots. The students got to eat the vegetables whenever we harvested for the school breakfast. We also sold part of the produce to help sustain the garden. Moreover, students and teachers enjoy the hands-on lessons that take place there in sciences, math and other subjects.

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We bring games into the classroom not simply for fun but for deeper learning. Students here are using LEGO bricks to create and learn more about geometric figures such as squares, rectangles and rhombuses. Others used them more creatively to problem solve, building motorcycles, cars, chairs and houses. For the kindergarteners, they are great tools for lessons around color shapes.

Promoting productive skills through art

The art students and teachers had an outstanding year. In woodworking class, they made over 200 woven chairs! We used some in our classrooms and sold some to schools in the area. We have more than 30 students who can now make these chairs on their own. Those in the sewing class made knit scarves using looms; another group learned to do bracelets from colorful rubber bands. Using these skills, we hope to increase our local capacity to buy some of the materials needed to keep the art center thriving.

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Our vision is to equip all MCLC students with some productive skills, in addition to solid academics, in order to increase their chances of making a living after graduation. With you at our side, we are sure that this vision will become a reality.

Chris Low, Executive Director FOM
Ezner Angervil, Director MCLC

 

June 2014 Update

Dear friends of Matènwa,

Happy Flag Day! As MCLC integrates new ideas, innovations, and visitors, we also continue to celebrate Haiti’s rich history and cultural traditions. More than 400 students, teachers, parents, and friends convened at MCLC on May 18 to celebrate Haitian Flag Day. It began with a parade where we marched down the street playing instruments and singing songs about the flag. 

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Then MCLC students and teachers performed a great program packed with songs, plays, poems, games, and stories about our national heroes. Participants spoke about the importance of the flag as a visible national symbol. They happily shared their knowledge about the historical events leading to its creation, modifications, and present design. We wish you could have been here to join in the fun!

Hands-On Math in the Garden

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Each fifth grader is responsible for their own tomato plant. The plants are now all bearing fruit. The students were recently asked to calculate: “If 4 tomatoes cost 10 Haitian gouds, how much money is your plant worth today?” They each counted the number of tomatoes on their plants, then divided by four, and multiplied it by the selling price. They reported that each plant yielded between 30 to 60 tomatoes. So they were worth between 75 to 150 gouds each ($1.75 to $3.50 US)

Observational Teacher Training

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We are excited to report that more and more organizations are bringing teachers from Haitian schools to us for a week of teacher training.

In this picture educators from the city of Jacmel, Haiti are watching the class calculate a math problem using the beet bed. They were impressed with how the garden was integrated into the curriculum.

These educators noted that the key elements that they felt made our model successful were: 1) We teach students in their mother tongue; 2) We treat them with respect; and 3) We provide them a hot breakfast every morning. They also were impressed by how happy the students were to share their experiences with them and also welcomed dialoguing with visitors.We thank you again for your contributions to this work to liberate and empower those who have been bound by oppressive educational systems.

Chris Low, Executive Director FOM
Ezner Angervil, Director MCLC

May 2014 Update

May 2014 Update

April 2014 Update

April Update

March 2014 Update

March 2014 Update

February 2014 Update

February 2014 Update