With the FIFA world cup on in Brazil all through June and July it seemed appropriate to cash in on the fever. It worked well to choose Brazil as our theme for the month.
The children got caught up in the frenzy of the semi finals and finals and for some reason Argentina and Brazil proved to be favorites. Maybe it was something to do with Messi and Neymar or perhaps the colour of their jerseys. Brazil not making it to the finals saddened some of them momentarily and then in an instant all allegiance shifted to Germany.
The hot favourites in the art area were definitely the colouring of the Brazilian flag and the Brazilian map that had to be reprinted by us numerous times. Some of the other art that was laid out in the culture area: Little T shirt cut outs for the children to colour their favourite team jersey, footballs made from paper plates, animals of the Amazon rain forest were glued either on the emergent layer of the forest, the canopy, or the forest floor according to where they dwell.
The month started with our first guest Mahajabeen Kazi, Enayah’s mother who spoke about Ramadan and laid out a traditional Iftaar spread for the children to experience. Earlier in the week some of the children de-seeded some dates and served them at the table.
Sana’s brother Ahaan is one of the few young guests that we have had. He held forth on football, it’s rules, some tactics, the FIFA tournament and especially his role as a goalie in his team. He quizzed the children on aspects of the game, some of which they answered, “who won the world cup?” and some “in how many years will the world cup be held again?” he did for them.
The event everyone looked forward to this month was the Rio Carnival at Da Vinci Montessori. The children had seen pictures and videos of the carnival and had also practiced a few days in advance. Little children from the toddler section served as the audience as the pre-primary children held a mock Carnival procession. As Samba music played in the background three groups of children made their way around the classroom moving to the music. A ‘ride on toy’ at the head of each group made up for the absence of the floats. They came dressed as pirates, princesses, faces painted, accessorized with ribbons, feathers, streamers and colourful pipe cleaners. It ended with everyone dancing to the 2014 world cup song ‘Show the world we are one’. All done everyone changed into their work clothes and it was back to work at school.
Post the carnival the children had a treat in store that afternoon. Urvashi’s friend Pooja who visited Brazil this year surprised them by stomping into the class wearing a feathery carnival mask. She shared her experiences at the carnival with them and brought with her some souvenirs, which included the current FIFA football.
To sum up how much they loved the Brazil experience one of the children said, “I really really want to go to Brazil” and another had Urvashi write out the recipe of the Salpicao salad so that her parents could make it at home.