From: Valerie Boes
Submit: Post Field Note
Date: 08 Oct 1996
Remote Name: mingong-mac-03.ucsc.edu
Lucia-kindergarten, Ryan-1st grade, Sara-12(i think)
When I arrived at Barrios Unidos the undergraduates, Marice(sp?), t.a.'s, Eugene, and the children sat together in a circle and began to introduce ourselves. There was a lot of energy in the room-kids laughing and making fun of things and having their private jokes. I was sort of nevous because this was my first time doing something like this so I just sat there kind of quietly. After the meeting began two young children came into the room with their mother. The mother didn't seem to speak much english. The children she brought in were Lucia and Ryan. I later found out that Lucia's mother is the women who brought them in and Ryan was Lucia's cousin. Lucia took a seat by me and Ryan sat on the other side of her. Ed(the t.a) asked if Lucia or Ryan spoke english and Ryan said he did but Lucia said she didn't. The children were asked to fill out these forms-name, address and so on. Pedro and I helped Lucia fill in her form and she didn't know her address, she said she was in 1st grade. A few minutes later Lucia said that she was in kindergarten. I think she might have said that she was in first grade because she didn't think she would be allowed in or something like that. After the meeting ended and we went to play with the children, Lucia started speaking to me in english. She wasn't perfect in it but she was pretty good. I think maybe she started to feel more comfortable with where she was at. Nonetheless, it was very wierd that she changed her age and said she couldn't speak english when she could.
It has been my experience that once you feel comfortable in a situation you are honest and can relax. I think this might have been the case with Lucia. A lot of the time that Lucia would speak to me in words that I could understand was when we were playing games together. She was the one who choose the games and by her doing this I think it made it easy for her to explain to me how she liked to play it. This sort of relates to Vygotsky's theory of giving student's owenership of a project. Even though it wasn't a lesson I was trying to teach her, she was able to teach me in her own way and I didn't tell her it was wrong even if it was.
The reason I noticed Lucia is because she is who first caught my eye. She was the youngest and for some reason she was the one who I was drawn to. It not only had to do with age but also all the mixed up information she gave while filling out the into. sheet.