I am now part of a service called Motor and gross skills development with christian outreach where students play games with adults that have down syndrome.

In my first day at this service, I did not know what to expect as I had never done it before. Nevertheless, in grade 9, I did a service that was very similar to that one which meant I could reuse my skills. There are many activities available such as drawing, musical instruments, ring toss and balloons. Sometimes, it can be challenging to play with them as they do not particularly want to or they do not understand the game. It takes persistence and commitment to speak to them to try and make them understand what the games consist in. An example of that was when I asked one of them to play with the ball with me but she did not particularly understand she had to throw the ball back at me. So, instead of using a foam ball I decided to try a ballon as it goes slower and she had more time to react.

As a whole, i find this service very fun as I love to play with them and they are very entertaining. I also learned that simple is better. As long as you smile and you’re having fun they will sense the good vibe and will follow your footsteps.

IFP activity

On Monday, we did a very interesting activity that gave me insights on one of the reasons why conflict happens and that is MISCOMMUNICATION.

Description of the activity:

The class was separated into two groups: the Jahs who were more privileged and the Pons who were a developing country. I was part of the Jahs. As a differentiation to the others, we were given purple ribbons and oreos, these were the two object the Pons did not have access to. We sat down in a separate room and the instructions that were given to us were very clear: you are a privileged country that want to help out the neighbours who are underdeveloped by giving them tips on how to run a society such as: prioritise on education, increase imports or have more labours. As a group, we were very keen and motivated to help them. After the 20 minutes, we went to the other room where the Pons were sitting is a circle. When we first came in, one of the pons started saying not to talk to us and they were doing their own thing inside the circle. We could imagine she was the leader of the group. It was interesting as we were not told they didn’t want our help so the fact that they were not respectful toward our propositions surprised us. They’re excuse was that they were building a monument to celebrate their independency.

One mistake my group may have made was say that instead of allocating their resources to this monument, they should use it for more useful things. As a group, we should have understood that this is an important topic for them and we should have been more understanding on their perspectives.  This created a lot of tension within the groups as this idea of mindsets from the beginning created the overall relationship between both countries. As a Jah, it took a lot of commitment and perseverance as being ignored when you are trying to say something is not easy.

Some challenges: It was difficult for us to feel included in their conversation. We were trying to speak to give our propositions but they kept shutting our ideas down. The greatest challenge was for us not to raise our voice as it would result in a conflict and we would not be able to understand and listen to each other.

If one day, we redo this activity, I would right away ask for their opinion and what were the instructions given to them to avoid conflict and miscommunication.