"Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it."
"There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it."
The 5th Grade students from Summit Charter School kick off our 12th Exchange with Sokode-Bagble P6 students.
This is the second or third time most of these students have participated in CIH. Their growth is obvious, not just in height, but maturity and engagement with the topic. They already identify themselves as citizens of the world, given they first participated in CIH two years ago. The puppets sent previously reflected that which they loved, while the beautiful art with poignant messages this exchange highlighted an interconnectedness. Abigail shares, “I drew this picture because everyone can be a friend and I would like to be your friend." “I drew rain over a rainbow to show that bad things don’t always end badly. They can end beautiful”, Bailee wisely reminds us. They shared the world they see outside of themselves, and how they can be better citizens by interacting with their community- near and far.
Fred, a long time participant and a current scholarship recipient, became the candle that reflects the light with this exchange. He became the first of our participants in Ghana to return to the classroom as a CIH volunteer. We are told that Fred, who is currently preparing to start his first year of Senior Secondary School, went from desk to desk visiting with the children and encouraging them. Our CIH team is "supported" by him this trip, as Kelvin writes on the board, while he also receives our support to stay in school.
It is clear, from all reports coming from Ghana, that the students were both encouraged and inspired. Students from Sokode-Bagble P6 mirrored their responses, while their faces shined most brightly as the Summit 5th Grade class photo was passed around. Seeing each other, whether in photos, video or artwork- the connective and mirroring moments- makes a difference. The artwork they received spoke to them in volumes and they excitedly produced beautiful pieces of their own. Bernice shared "I am a citizen of the world because I take care of plants and birds." Carlos responded, like many of the male students in the States, that he views soccer a connecting force; "I am a citizen of the world because I want to be a footballer."