By: Caroline Scott
I am a teacher for AM’s Brasilito classes and I love it there! Brasilito is a new and growing project site for AM and we are still determining what kinds of programs are a good fit. Last session, Rebecca and I started doing Thrilling Thursday or “Día Divertido” in Brasilito. It has been, and continues to be, our best way for integrating with the community and enticing new kids to join our programs. With the new session starting to get underway, Jamie, John, Diana, Nerea and I decided to follow in the footsteps of the world and host a Brasilito version of the Olympics. It was a blast for the volunteers and it was certainly a great day for our kids!
We got on the bus from Potrero to Brasilito with our bucket full of supplies for the big day: hacky sacks plus a hacky sack scoring board that someone had kindly donated, soccer balls, a jump rope, buckets, cups, and—for the rewards—trophies. As always, we arrived to find a gang of kids waiting for us. Seeing us walk towards the classroom on Thrilling Thursday is always a cause for excitement but this time—upon the sight of candy—they went crazy! They were ready to play.
We initially split up the kids into two groups, but as we approached the field to begin the first relay, we quickly had to switch things up again, as it was discovered that one of our kids is allergic to grass and couldn’t go on the soccer field. No matter though! Her friends quickly volunteered to skip the grass relay games and come with Diana and me while we quickly devised what activity we wanted to lead with the hacky sacks. There was individual throwing and then team throws, where we split up the kids into groups and watched them duke it out. Soon, a lot of kids were stopping by to try their hand at the hacky sack toss and attempt to win candy. While my team did hacky sacks, Nerea, Jamie, and John started their team off with a variety of races.
While we are still figuring out the different quirks of Brasilito, like grass allergies, our kids seem to love playing games, being outside and doing new things. While the Olympics may not have been watched with as much widespread fever as in the U.S, there is no reason AM can’t have fun bringing it into the lives of the kids we get to help learn and play.