The Lone Chaperone

Credit for this blog title goes to Maura ๐Ÿ™‚ Week two was definitely an interesting one! I’m still not entirely sure how it happened, but I found myself being the only chaperone for a group of 10 middle school kids in DC for 5 days. As anyone who knows me well could tell you, I’m not super awesome with kids so this was definitely outside of my comfort zone. The kids were all attending a program called Close-Up. It’s basically a civic education program that invites children who are considered ‘new Americans’ (immigrants, migrants, etc.) to come to DC, learn about community activism, the legislative process, American elections and government, and get a general introduction to DC. It’s a great program and I think the kids had fun and learned a lot. Lucky for me, after the first couple of days they started listening to me. This was probably a miracle considering how they reacted when they found out I was only 19 and not a ‘real teacher’. Things were going pretty well – Until it was time to come home. A series of very unfortunate and frustrating events (I’ll spare you the full, drawn-out story that my housemates were forced to hear) meant that I had to drag 10 exhausted middle school kids up and down DC, with all of their luggage, for 2 hours trying to flag down our bus. In a heat wave of course. And I didn’t speak the same language as some of the kids. We finally got on our bus 2 hours late and in a pretty disgusting, dehydrated state. But everyone made it home alive and my worst fears of losing someone’s child in DC did not come true, so I’ll count that trip as a success!
Friday was the only day this week I was actually in Gettysburg, but it was a pretty good day. We started out with group breakfast with Kim and Gretchen (crepes, courtesy of Maura) and then Chandra and I went off to do yoga with the seniors at the Senior’s Center. We only got 3 ladies to join us, but they seemed to really like it so I have hope that we’ll get more and more people to participate. We were then taught how to play Rummy by Frances, and Chandra completely crushed us. She says she has really good luck with cards but I’m not convinced Frances wasn’t giving her an edge ๐Ÿ˜‰ Then Chandra and I spent the afternoon making dinner for our bi-weekly Senior Center Dinner, which Yaou, Maura, and Mauricio were kind enough to also attend. We made a potato, chicken, broccoli, and cauliflower casserole, a green bean stir fry, tomato and veggie soup, and cinnamon toast with Chandra’s homemade apricot jam. Everyone seemed to like it for the most part, and we’re hoping to get some students to provide entertainment for the next dinner, so hopefully the next one will be even more of a success!
I’m looking forward to finally settling into my normal schedule now that I’ll be back at Gettysburg full-time and the LIU classes are back on a set schedule and location. Hopefully we’ll be able to head to the lake tomorrow to do a little local exploring and we’ll see what the next week brings!

Melanie

Photo captions:
These are all pictures from the first yoga class Chandra and I lead at the Senior Center. We had some very lovely ladies join us, including Jeanne, Frances, and Eloise who can all be seen in the first photo. The second photo is of one of our favorite poses, ‘the glamour shot’ ๐Ÿ™‚

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