This morning I was picked up early by Johannah, the Director of the Education Department. We once again traveled about an hour outside the city to a small community called Los Limites. Los Limites is located right by the El Ceibal forest and Proyecto Titi has an office in this town. Los Limites is also the sight of where the Proyecto Titi's artisan projects began. It is a very small community of about 300 people and only has two roads. We began in Los Limites today because on Saturday we will be celebrating the annual day of the cotton top tamarin. I began the day by helping unload items for the celebration.
Next I traveled with some of the education staff to an elementary school called Loma Del Arena. The education department has a program about cotton top tamarin conservation that they have begun in three schools. Their goal is to get all of the schools that surround the forest involved in this program and Loma Del Arena is the last school they need. This program is developed for 7-9th grade and it focuses on the relationship between the cotton top tamarins and the children and what the children can do to help them. Before beginning this 10 week program, the students involved get a pre-test to see what knowledge they have of the tamarins (here is a picture of them taking their pre-test). After the program they will receive the same test and the education department will be able to see how much of the information was retained. We gave the pre-test to 12 slightly distracted classes (they asked me a lot of question and wanted me to teach them English). We will return next week to begin their first program. Each program will be taught in a 2 hour time period each week to each class.
I also learned today, that while out in the field you can run into issues with vehicles. When we returned to Los Limites that afternoon, we had to go back to El Ceibal to pick up a few items we needed for Saturday. While at El Ceibal our truck had some issues and broke down. Although this set us back a few hours, it did make the day into an interesting and fun adventure. Out of this I experienced my first Colombian motorbike ride that lead to a late lunch with some of the education staff. While waiting for the truck to be fixed we gave each other English and Spanish lessons and I was taught how to play dominoes. I learned that that the best way to learn a new language is to laugh, be silly, and don't be afraid to make mistakes.