Early Childhood programs in Chimbote are community supported with the teacher’s salary supplemented by the state. Because of this, the classroom environments vary greatly. WGC in field staff, Selena visits a few of these programs regularly. She provides demonstration lessons and works directly with children. On Tuesday and Wednesday she took us to two of these classrooms. The first was a 30 minute walk from her home in Chimbote, from the busy city streets into what becomes the campo, farm area. The classroom has walls and cement floors. It is attached to a primary school. The teacher Mari regularly has 12-14 children. But we are in the last days of the school year, so few were in attendance. The children were happy to see Selena and excited to meet her mother!
The next school we visited is a school operated by Edith, one of our Pushaq Warmi women. Her classroom is in Nuevo Chimbote. It is a structure she has built herself. It exist within thatch walls and dirt floors, she has child size furniture and organized learning materials. She regularly has 12 children, 5 of those children will be rising to primary school when the next school year begins in March.
Both of these classrooms have the most important resource in an early childhood classroom, a caring compassionate teacher. Mari and Edith welcome Selena and the demonstration lessons she provides. They are open to suggestions and eager to attend workshops and try out new ideas. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the early childhood education programs in the Chimbote area.