The kids are back and school is in session (actually it has been 3 weeks already, I am just late writing this entry ). Since we live on the school compound we hear kids at all hours of the day now, and I love it! Here is what a typical day at Mt. Kenya Baptist School looks like for us…
At 8am we join the teachers for devotions in the staff room. This goes until classes start at 8:30. Now, let me add that during this half hour, the students are in their classrooms already working on assignments for the day, without a teacher! There is one teacher during the devotion time that is “on duty” to make sure that students are behaving. But that is about 250 students with 1 teacher! I am seriously impressed by these students behavior and motivation.
Normally after devotions, Andrew and I go back to our house and study for Swahili. We have our Kiswahili class every day somewhere between 9am and 12 (It changes every day). I’m in Standard 1, and Andrew is Standard 2. I typically study from devotion time until class. We both have great teachers who are also working with us individually outside the classroom. I am so thankful for this!
Every day at 10:30 is tea time. I have come to really look forward to this time each day! All the students and teachers cross the street to the dining hall and get a cup of tea and a snack. The teachers then go back to sit in their favorite spot in the grass to enjoy their snack together. This time of fellowship is fun as we are getting to know the teachers.
Now, let me tell you about the tea. The Swahili word for tea is “chai.” I have never enjoyed chai tea in the states, so when we first came I was very hesitant. But it is incredible!! (It makes Starbucks look really bad!) They serve it really hot, which is always nice because mornings are VERY cold here, so we are normally just thawing out at this time. My favorite snack is called mandazi. It is basically a baked pastry, with a slightly-sweet taste. It is simple, but so delicious!
The kids eat lunch at 1pm. A typical meal is rice with beans or lentils. We ate with the kids one day during the first week, but realized we were a huge distraction to them! Their lunch time is about 45 minutes, and all 250 kids have to get in and out of the dining hall in that time. Which means that each rotation of kids have to eat quickly. About 10 minutes after we sat down with them, one of the cooks came out saying “Eat quicker, eat quicker” (in Swahili). So we decided that we should not eat with them during lunch because we seem to slow them down. J Now we eat with the teachers across the street. But we do eat dinner with the kids every Sunday, which is more relaxed.
After lunch varies every day. Sometimes we have meetings set up with teachers, or we go into town, or we study Swahili, etc. I normally come back to cook and clean. I have been experimenting in the kitchen a lot! But that will be another blog all to itself! 🙂
Wednesday and Sunday nights the boarders have a bible study time, kind of like youth group. We have been able to attend those times, and it is so much fun! The kids LOVE to sing and act. We spend a while singing songs (which many are in Swahili, so we just clap and try to follow along), and then the kids act out skits for bible stories. They are very creative in what they do, I have been impressed! It is also incredible to see how much these kids know of the Bible. It is obvious that they are being brought up in the Word of God, and you can see it in how they act and talk. It has been very encouraging!