Sample Mini-Projectís

Subject: Fieldnote#1: My Guidance
From: Jaime 
 Date: Thursday, 27 March 2003


My first priority at the LACC as a guide to the children is to provide them with something fun to do. When I have gone the past few times, the children seemed bored. They needed some type of direction to engage them in an activity. I tried to think of fun things to do in the art room with the limited amount of supplies that were available. I just think a child is not going to open up to me unless I seem interested in opening up to them.

I think it is important for me, as an older student, to initiate the guidance to the children. I think not only introducing an activity is important, but following up with it and guiding the child. I think helping them and talking to them provides enough guidance because they really look forward to meeting and talking to older students. I feel like they really do not receive enough guidance at the LACC, so I try to correct them and help them succeed in the activity we are doing.

It is hard to relate to these children, because they are from a totally different environment and culture than me. I try to talk to them first to get a sense of their backgrounds before I start my guidance. I know last week when I went, one boy was getting paint all over his clothes. I said to him "Be careful with the paint so your mom won't get mad about your dirty clothes." And he said "My mom doesn't care about me anyway." This made me really sad because I have never had this experience. I made him laugh afterwards because it was awkward, but it still made me feel terrible.

I learned that guiding a child is very easy. It is just important to be as interested in the child as they are to me. I think when they see the older college student taking the initiative, they automatically open up. I am looking forward to providing more guidance as I continue my visits to the LACC!



Subject: Fieldnote#2: Weaving Interests
From: Megan 
Date: Tuesday, 29 April 2003


I am writing about an experience in the past, but it was one of my favorite times at the LACC since I started going. It was about 2 weeks ago when I was planning on going to the art room (like always) but it was closed because a special activity was going on in there. The woman running it said I could come on and help out, but I figured this would be my chance to finally get up to the gym for once. Before I could even get to the gym though a group of girls asked me to come in the dance room with them. The room was empty, so I figured it was fine for us to be in there. They all started dancing and practicing for when their teacher got there. They told me to dance, which I really really canít do, so they all started teaching me. One held on to my waist & led me, while another held my hands. They were all amazingly good. It was crazy to see such little kids moving around like that. Even some guys, like Issac and a few older boys, came in & started dancing & they were great too. The teacher then came in & I got ready to leave, but he asked me to stay. He put on music & they all went through their routine. I went to just sit down & watch so I wouldnít be in the way, but he took me aside and started teaching me the moves. All the kids were excited and yelling out things for me to do, and although I never really got any of the dances down it was a great time. I was really sorry to have to leave when the bus came. My goal when I went to the dance room was originally to just watch the kids, but I soon learned that wouldnít be an option. They really wanted me to dance and everyone took their turns helping me. (I needed a lot help!) The kids all seemed really interesting & it was great to see them all moving around. Some of the girls who barely spoke had huge smiles on their face and were laughing (at me) but they were like completely different kids. It was also different to see all the boys dancing so well and bragging who was the best, I know my guy friends never bragged about their dancing skills. I definitely think a lot of the kids were more comfortable with helping me as opposed to me helping them. Even though I want to be a friend to the kids, I think a lot still see us as teachers or adults, but in the case the roles were switched and they were the teachers. My own comfort level grew as I spent more time in the room, at first I just wanted to sit in the corner & watch, but I ended up having a great time dancing with all of them. I didnít really incorporate any of my current interests in my guidance, because the only dancing I have ever done is Irish dancing, but the interests of many of the kids were involved. I liked that because I felt like they were really happy and I got to see a new side of a lot of them. The night in the art room was definitely a night like no other Iíve ever had, so it was really interesting & I ended up having a lot of fun. The music was all Latino music and the dancing was something like salsa-ish Iíd guess, so I also felt like I was learning about some of the culture of the LACC. Overall it was a nice break from the art room, and I felt like I got to better know the kids and their multi-faceted personalities. I am very glad I stayed down and didnít go to the gym that night because I havenít had a chance to be in the dance room since.