The famous 18th century poet, Alexander Pope (see above quote) was a very clever and intelligent man, and he was right (at least from my own experience) about having just a little learning being dangerous and encouraging us to learn as much as we can. The teachers and parents who have been attending the four-day seminar on Montessori teaching that Karen has been leading fall into the latter category. They are drinking this up as fast as they can. Karen had the great idea to invite one or two parents from each school to come so that they know what the teachers are supposed to be doing and will hold their feet to the fire if they aren’t. The parents love, I mean absolutely love, the Montessori method—as do the teachers. I don’t think the parents will have any trouble making sure the teachers are doing what they have learned here these past few days. I think Karen may have learned that doing three of these seminars in less than four months may have over-taxed her a bit. I doubt
she will be doing any more, but she doesn’t have to. We can have more of these seminars here and have the teachers currently teaching in the schools to do the training. These are seeds that sprout and grow rapidly rather like the sweet potato project she has started. She began with just two, but as you can see in the picture at the right, those two have grown into about twenty. And those twenty can each make another twenty and so it goes until you have an entire farm crop of sweet potatoes. She has taught over twenty teachers and parents who will teach others. This is one of those things whose worth is self-evident. The parents and the teachers can intuitively see and feel that this is a terrific way of teaching and fun as well. If we, and by “we” I mean Karen, do nothing more than what we have done, I suspect education around here will never be the same. She has taught how to be creative and to use locally available and inexpensive things to make the tools necessary for the kids to learn on their own. I’ve told her how proud I am of her and now I’m telling all of my readers how proud I am of her. We often wonder why God called us here. Was it for the biosand filters, the sanitation and hygiene workshops, the pastor training, the preaching, the teaching, starting schools, feeding orphans, setting up football fields—we don’t know? It could be just one of those things or all of them. All we know is that we are always a little tired when we finish, but it is a “good” tired. I think you all know what I mean by that. To borrow from the prayer I quoted yesterday, I think that God is a little proud of what we do here. I know I am, and I know that pride is a sin, but Christ also told us to let our light shine and that is just what we are doing. Doing what we can, where we are, with what we have is what we were called to do, and we are being true to that call.