Keeping You In Stitches

Costa Rica’s Graduation season is finally over!

Posted on: January 11, 2014

Dylana waiting1Today Dylana graduated from the English class she’s been taking since last July.  She would board the bus at 6 a.m. and ride into town on Saturdays. Then walk to Sabana Larga to take the English class. I can’t thank my friends enough that “donated” money to give her this opportunity! It does take a village to educate!  She enjoyed the class; however, Mark and I think she spoke more English to us before taking the class! LOL

Graduation “season” started with her 6th grade graduation from the Central School of Atenas on December 12…then followed many fiestas to celebrate and it’s culminated with today’s graduation.

This graduation was held in the building next to the police station. It included kids from age 8 up to maybe 15-16 years old.  There were two young male instructors for probably 50+ students.  Different classes met at different times of the day on Saturdays.  When they were calling the names of the graduates to go to the stage to receive their diplomas, they announced to please applaud for each graduate.

I couldn’t help but notice that a lot of the girls received a kiss on the cheek (a greeting in Costa Rica) when the instructor gave them their diplomas.  What a change from the “old country” where heaven forbid you touch a student.

They would call up maybe 15 students for diplomas then there was a break in the “action” to call numbers for door prizes….ie: free classes, dictionaries in English, more English instruction books, etc.  I couldn’t help but notice that a lot of the same families won multiple times.  The family sitting at the end of the table that we were at, won 5 different prizes.  Reminded me of Bingo!

dylanaandteacher2

Dylana and her teacher

After all this was over, then it was time to eat.  They served a meal of arroz con pollo, ensalada, papas, and arroz con leche for dessert. (rice with chicken, salad, potato chips and rice with milk).  It was pretty tasty!!!  But I think anything I don’t have to cook or clean up after is pretty tasty!

School will start again for Dylana in February and she’ll be off to Collegio (what we would consider high school).  She’ll be learning French this year.  Her Mom told us she’ll have 20 teachers….whew! Can you imagine keeping all of them happy? She’ll then graduate from Collegio in 5 years and hopefully going to the University will follow.

While we were waiting for graduation to begin, her mother, Maricela, leaned over and said “you’re the only Gringo here!”

Since this was a class where the students learned English, silly me, thinking that maybe a little English might be spoken.  There was none, nada spoken!  I could follow some of what was being said, but I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to jump up and request “por favor, despacio” (please, slower)

Been a great experience to see these events take place….even if I am the “token Gringo”!

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