Monday, July 29, 2013

July 6th: Meeting the Kids at Paaralang Pagibig at Pagasa

IP Rondalla posing with some of the PPP teachers in front of the
school compound.
IP Rondalla kids looking at the friendship 
bracelet they received from PPP kids.

Hi, this is Hollie. Today is Saturday, July 6th, and we just finished our visit at Paaralang Pagibig at Pagasa (PPP). The PPP is a school for children with learning disabilities, for example, those who are visually impaired, have hearing disabilities, or are intellectually challenged. We were able to meet and interact with some of the children who will be performing with us later in the afternoon at SM San Pablo City Mall. Getting to know some of these kids was amazing. When I saw the smiles on their faces as we sang together and had lots of fun, I felt unlike I had ever felt before. I knew I was giving something back to the community while receiving something valuable from them as well...and it felt so amazing.

Tita Cris conferring with the faculty and staff of PPP where
they exchanged ideas and experiences regarding teaching
 special education to children with various learning needs.
Next we had the chance to visit the children with hearing impairment. When we met, I wasn't sure how I was going to communicate with them because I don't know any sign language. Their teachers gave us a quick study on a few basic signing skills.  We felt a little awkward at first in this quite unfamiliar world, but the kids seemed to enjoy our presence and this made us feel more at ease.

We gave them some gifts, mainly from Sierra's collection of stuffed animals from her dad's travels around the U.S. We realized that many of these kids had never had stuffed toys before. As we gave each of them our gift of stuffed animals, their faces lit up with expressions of happiness that I had never seen before. I remember one of the stuffed animal (a monkey) made loud monkey sounds. Curiously, they put it up to their ears so that they could feel the vibration. They started giggling as the kids pushed the play button over and over again. We also gave some of the toys to the visually impaired kids. Everybody had lots of fun.

Right before we left, the kids also gave us individual gifts of friendship bracelets that they themselves made. This experience was amazing, and I couldn't have asked for a better day. 
Talk to you next time, Hollie.

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