Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Songs, Bake Sales, and Free Rice

Reason #2349858 that Sweet Hopkins is the reason we're successful in life: through her ministry we learned songs that are keeping us afloat after leading chapel about 10 times in one semester.
Here are the kiddos singing the "you're my brother, you're my friend" song that B and I have been singing each summer at camp since approx. 1995.
They have really loved that song, as well as the "fruit of the spirit's not a cherry" song, which makes me laugh so much. They even invented a new fruit to go along with all the ones normally in the song- a "mango" verse with hopping motions.
For the past few weeks our students have been raising money to buy paint. We are connected by many people to Christian Service International, and that ministry has recently built some pre-fab homes for their Haitian staff who lost homes in the quake. On our Flag Day holiday (which was today), we took about 40 students out to a suburb of PAP to have a Paint Party and put paint on the houses CSI built, which not only makes them beautiful, but also extends the life of the homes due to termite-proofing them for a few more years.

The high schoolers came up with a bake sale all on their own- planned it, baked for it, and ran it. Their earnings put us over the top of our goal, and we had enough money to paint all three houses like we hoped!
The cheesecake was a hot seller.
Hungry students in line with cash in hand. So proud of the high schoolers for their initiative.
This scene is a teacher's dream. Every single student is engaged, intently focused. They complained when I said they had to leave to go to lunch. They asked to do this same activity again the next day. What is this mysterious and amazing activity? www.freerice.com.
Free Rice is a website with a vocabulary game. It gives you a word and you must pick a synonym from four options. If you get it right, the words get harder, and they get easier when you miss. The beauty is, the game is sponsored by the UN World Food Program, and every time you get an answer right their sponsors donate 10 grains of rice to the hungry.
There's even a great visual- on the screen you have a virtual bowl where you see your rice total increase with each correct answer.Just playing for 30 minutes or so gives you quite a total at the end. I was not sure whether the kids would like this game, and I kind of hyped it up all week. But they LOVED it! What a win-win... loving learning vocabulary words, and rice for the hungry. I mean, does it get any better?

Coming up next:
1. Ben's story of walking through a ravine community after church last Sunday with some families who used to live there.
2. All the photos of today's Paint Party where the kids painted newly-constructed houses for earthquake victims.

Bon Fet Drapo Ayiti! Happy Flag Day, Haiti!



  1. I LOVE freerice.com... when we first discovered it, I actually had Trey (10) and Timothy (8) playing it instead of their usual computer games. I'll have to reintroduce them to it, since it's been a while. Thanks for the reminder!

    I prayed for all of you today as you painted! What a great experience!! So glad it went so well, and it was great to hear about the bake sale that they took initiative to do!

    Keep up your teaching and loving them... and we'll see you really soon!

    As you prepare to leave for the summer, I've already started praying that God will prepare your hearts for those crazy mixed emotions you'll likely have. I know in some ways you can't wait to come back, but you'll of course miss the kids and life there. Know that we'll be praying for you. You will be held in His hands through it all, and it will be great to see you! :)


  2. Kim,

    Thanks for your prayers. I was moved to see that you are thinking about our adjustment coming home. It is something that has been on the forefront of my mind lately.

    We will see you on the 6th.




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