David shares stories of his 2008 Guatemala adventure.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Computer Classes Get Serious

Hi all... Please click on the photos for a larger view.

Computer StudentsWe just finished our first week of serious classes. Up to this time, the students have been helping us with inventory and fixing computers. We had a few lessons on the parts of a computer system and took a couple apart to learn about what’s inside. It has been partly difficult because we don’t always get the same group of students and always difficult because of my weak language skills. On a good day, the students correct my Spanish. On a bad day, they act totally bored, like the day we had our discussion about computer safety and safe internet use. Some of the kids are very savvy and already have MySpace and Hi5 pages.

This week, we came in with a serious plan. First, we selected 6 students who were regulars. We asked the students if they would tell their own stories about la Pedrera project using photographs and text. Then we set them loose with digital cameras. Using their photos, we used GIMP to crop and resize the photos. I had a real difficult time because all the menus were in Spanish, but we managed to finish a lesson on preparing files for Students doing stitchworkthe Web.

I thought some of you might be interested in photos taken by the students to tell their la Pedrera stories. Because school is not currently in session, students are working on manual skills that teach patience and also touch on the Mayan cultural heritage of working with fabric. I am not sure, but the cross-stitch pieces they are working on may also be presents for their family for Navidad. When students return to school in January the main focus will be on homework and school related skills.

Students StitchingOur plan for next week is to bring up a second tier of students to involve them in the “story” project. I was hoping that the more advanced students could help the younger ones. I think we will need to pare down our expectations and may simply bring their photos into MS Word or PowerPoint rather than try to make actual web pages. Some of the more serious ones are already forging ahead with Web pages. When we are done I hope to publish some of the stories on the web, linked to this blog. Stay tuned.


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