Around noon Bill, Carolyn, Jonathan, Daniel and I packed up the XO’s and piled into the car to travel the pot-holed dirt roads past cattle grazing and sugar cane farms. In the distance spectacular volcano’s vaulted with cloud-shrouded peaks never failing to impress by virtue of their mere presence. Passing nary another vehicle during the 40-minute drive, everyone in the pueblo rides bikes, horse pulled wagons or motorbikes, and we reached the elementary school in Buenos Aires pueblo.

Marcial and Roxanna meet us at the gate to the school. We unpacked the suitcase filled with the xo’s and entered the classroom to meet the rather unsuspecting students. We were told that they had no clue what was in store for them until today. Asked if the had ever used a computer the responded with a unanimous no. Did they know anyone who worked with computers? No again.

We distributed the computers and the children’s faces spoke clearly of their wonder and delight. Carolyn jumped into the introduction of the computer, starting up, opening and exiting programs, saving a project, finding it again in their journal. The camera feature tapped into the universal appeal of picture taking but the music program was the overwhelming initial hit. With so many mentors available, 2 teachers, 2 helpers, 2 translators, Carolyn instructing, Bill filming and myself both mentoring and shooting stills, every child was able to move smoothly and easily through all of the navigation skills presented. The children were remarkably focused, attentive and engaged. An older child spent at least an hour peering in from an outside window trying to take in what was happening.

It was hot. At one point the principle asked if the children would prefer to move outside. A vote was taken and they expressed the wish to stay at their desks and so it was. At the end of the day they scooted out for their bicycles and headed off all smiling and appreciative.

After a short break Bill began teaching lessons 1 through 3 to the teachers and mentors. We did move this session outside to the shade of a large tree. Geovany – one of the translators is also quite computer literate. This is an excellent and unexpected advantage. Everyone seemed to be able to follow these first lessons without frustration or difficulty. By the time we packed up to leave everyone seemed both pleased and excited with the events of the day.

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