Colegio Esperanza Day 1
After breakfast at the local panadería, we walked to Colegio Esperanza ready to start school at 8.10! And what a welcome we received! The whole school were standing in the central playground ready for a special assembly during which they sang the Mexican national anthem, the Tlaxcala anthem and the school song whilst parading the flags. Their marching was brilliant. Then we were told the important things that happened this week in history - including the Declaration of Mexican Independence before we were welcomed to the school. Madre Lupita, the school's director, welcomed us and said that Colegio Esperanza were very happy to host us and that she hoped our schools would be a bridge between our two countries and cultures. The assembly finished with some folk dances - and we had to join in. It was very special.
After assembly we spoke with the dancers who greeted us in Spanish and their native language. They told us that they had only started to learn Spanish as they grew older.
Then Maestro Juan took us to meet 4A and 5A and B. We talked about what they thought it means to be Mexican and also what makes someone a hero. It was interesting to hear the children talk about pride in their country and culture as something that was very important to them as Mexicans. We were asked lots of questions about England, our schools and the children. One class was particularly interested in the games we play and we've promised to send an explanation of how to play rugby and cricket for them!
At break time we were treated to fresh fruit, chocolate milk and a Mexican snack - and lots of curious children surrounded us to say hello. After that we want to visit Ana Gloria and preschool who we taught to sing If you're happy and you know it. They all joined in and shouted 'we are!' very loudly!
After all that we needed 'un descanso' before we met some of the secondary aged children who showed us some work they had done about sustainability and the environment. We were very impressed as they did their presentations in English.
School finishes at 2.00 and we spent this afternoon and evening at the Feria de Tlaxcala. We went to a concert by 'Mariachi Sinfónica' which combined a traditional Mexican mariachi band with an orchestra. It was wonderful and even more enjoyable because the orchestra was conducted by the cousin of Erica, an English teacher who used to teach at Colegio Esperanza who accompanied us. After the concert we walked around the fair and spoke to some policemen who let us wear their hats before having dinner with Erica, her daughter and her cousin (the conductor.)