It was Monday morning back to school for me this week – to spend a happy and rewarding day with students at St. Stephen Elementary, on the border with the U.S. in New Brunswick.
Usually in school visits I talk about writing and read a few episodes from my books. But all my writing during the past year has been for teens, and I had nothing new to share with the students, whom I’ve visited annually for several years during Family Literacy Week. So this time, for something different, I talked about my two visits to Ethiopia for CODE – where I went, how I got there, what I saw, what I did, and – most important – what I learned.
I talked about the work of CODE (the Canadian Organisation for Development through Education), especially its work in Ethiopia, and showed photographs and a video of Addis Ababa and Debra Zeit, and answered lots of questions. Then, with the help of student models, I showed off the gifts of traditional robe, vest, dress and head scarf I brought home, bringing a little bit of Ethiopia into a New Brunswick classroom.