Little Blue Steals the Show: Dress Rehearsal in Chilinza Village

Day 10, Dress Rehearsal in Chilinza

With the big show rapidly approaching, today was spent going over last minute details with Standard 4. By now, these kids not only know me, but I know them. I know Collins was held back and he never goes anywhere without his one friend. So naturally, I nicknamed them Bill and Bob, which they got a kick out of. I know little blue, which is what I call this tiny kid in our class who’s always wearing blue because I don’t know his real name, is smart as a whip, way more so than he should be for such a little pip squeak. Hence why he fittingly became our ring leader or conductor, if you will, for our performance. I know Gloria has the biggest, silliest smile I’ve ever seen. And I know one little girl memorized the words to “Oh You Shine” perfectly and is so proud every time we sing it. Her face, as she shyly looks up at me to see if I’m noticing how well she does it, will forever warm my heart.

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With these bonds forming, it’s made it possible for me to command these kid’s attention and get them to grasp what I’m telling them through simple hand motions and facial expressions. This shows me that love can be conveyed more through actions than it can through words.

Today we pulled some fabric out for them to use for costumes and I jokingly whirled the colorful materials around my neck like a scarf and did a catwalk complete with dramatic poses, which caused the kids to double over in laughter. Aside from my crazy antics, we also spent a lot of time today teaching them a dance and the lyrics to “Wavin Flag” by K’Naan. We decided this piece would be the finale to our full show tomorrow with the entire school and Standard 4 was in charge of choreographing it.

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Now, the lyrics to this song say, “When I get older, I will be stronger, they’ll call me freedom, just like a waving flag.” Our team felt that this message of encouragement, paired with the fact that it was South Africa’s World Cup song made it the perfect encore choice.

I sang the lyrics to the kids and had them repeat after me until they (kind of) got it. Then, we went outside and moved onto the dance to go with their little voices. The kids chose each move and then we taught the finished product to the rest of the classes. It was exhausting, but it was also clear that the kids were pleased with their creation. So, screaming my lungs out while dancing in the dust was very worth it.