Our last month has been super busy – all with good things from the Lord! Our final day of literacy for class one was on Friday, January 24th. All 15 of our students were still working hard through until the end. I gave them blue readers to practice reading for a week, and gave them their writing books to keep. Zach came by to take our picture:
Yesterday, we met again so they could return their readers and read the stories I had asked them to write for homework. I LOVED seeing their progress. It is so neat that these dear friends can read and write in their own language! (Also, it has been neat to be able to get some reading glasses here into the village to help the older ones read up close.)
After we met, everyone got ready and then it was time for our graduation celebration. The class themselves handled all the preparations and schedule. We were led up from the classroom by singing and a man dressed in traditional dress:
Then leaders from the community spoke, encouraging the rest of the community to learn to read and write, talked about how they should all support the work of literacy, and encouraged the graduating students to keep reading.
Then the students each read a part of a story they wrote called, “The story of our literacy class.”
Zach spoke, speaking of the bigger picture, and then we gave out certificates:
After that, the students gave us presents: string purses, cabbages, peanuts, oranges, and chickens.
We are super proud of the graduates!
On a personal note: I left graduation feeling SO thankful for all those who have gone before us in developing literacy programs in unwritten languages. I had so many resources to use and people to ask (Kelley Housley and the Crabtrees: thank you!) – these people and programs are evidences of God’s grace to me and to the Do people.
We are also proud and thankful for our kids. The night before graduation, we were outside until dark hanging with people and setting up the tarp – they loved getting to stay outside and play until dark. During graduation they sat and watched the whole thing with happy hearts.
More updates in pictures below:
In the last few weeks I have been working hard on fixing any errors in the literacy books, reprinting teacher manuals, and prepping it all for the next class.
We have also been plugging along with homeschool (Zach helped a TON while I was teaching literacy. And, three times a week, the Mitchells do recess with the kids so that Zach can get started with translation earlier.):
Zach has still been plugging away translating God’s word in preparation for the gospel teaching. I am so proud of his diligence!
Also, one of our chickens has chicks now. Four of them are children of a Turken breed chicken (naked neck)… so they are ugly! When I told some friends here that I didn’t want my chickens to have chicks because there was an ugly rooster around, they just laughed. Because, in their minds, meat is meat!
And our rebel kitty decided to get pregnant as well. We do love Sambo (Sky) though!
Last pics are of a project Zach has been doing with the boys (usually when he frees me up with work on literacy). They are building a loft above our living room for a boys’ hideout. It has been exciting for them to work on together!
It has been busy and good and we are ready for a break. We will be heading out of the village in 10 days to get some rest.