2013 Summer Program Retention

My final thoughts to ChinaWay

...It seems so long ago that everyone was together in ChinaWay. Our hearts broke when we had to say good-bye. Here, we made such great friends, met so many amazing people, visited awesome places and experienced incredible things.                                                                                                   -- Angela

Gonna to Ya An

Wake up in the morning gonna see pandas
Got my sunglasses, out the door, I'm gonna see Ya An.
Get ready, chop veggies with some clumsy skill
'Cause when I leave in the cart, the trays are already filled. 
I'm talking 'bout--
Mosquitoes on our skin, skin,
Watching panda kin, kin
Riding in the breeze, breeze
Fast-walking, time to eat, eat
Sweet Popsicles and we're chased by bees
Again, it's time to feed, feed---
We're here, been a year,
People, buy some souvenirs,
Today, we'll all wait, we gave pandas only bait.
Deceived, but not bereaved,
But the day don't stop, no
Bleary pandas, hello, 'lo.
Heavy uniforms only to feed 'em twice a day, did you know?!   
We're back, cut some slack.
We were never on track
Didn't do much, this is such, but now we're in a rush
Certificates, panda mitts
But the bus ride don't stop no...
Let's take these photos, oh
Of baby pandas when we're down so low
Ain't got a care in the world, but got all these noodles,
They're as spicy as heck, but it's pretty good food.
Now, we're all lining up 'cause we got two hours return,
Sleep away the ride, smirk and take weird photos (awkward!)
Don't stop, make it pop
DJ, blow my speakers up
Tonight, Imma fight until we see the sunlight.
Tick Tock, on the clock
But the party don't stop no--
(at least, not until someone yells at us   
then we'll have to make a huge fuss...)
[Writer, go home, you're drunk. But seriously, no self-respecting person would make a parody of Tik Tok about pandas and spicy noodles and get stuck in rhyming mode. I must've lost all my dignity at camp]


BLOG 7     6/29/2013

The melody of our days are sweet and lilting/jarring and abrupt/music to the murmuring ears.
Lively was the morning, crackling with energy/songs/ablaze dawn.
Boulevard of Broken Dreams stretched onwards, blanks filled as our deer/dear children wobbled on trembling legs before standing proudly.
Someone Like You was soulful, deep, and mired our students in tittering uncertainties and hearty laughter; try and en/courage as the stage became home to the realm of English music.
Call Me Maybe traded souls for wishes, pennies and dimes once for a kiss but emptied out of Time's piggy bank, restless sunshine danced about like the thoughts of the class yearning for more.
Intense was the noon, glowing with knowledge/ blackboards/bright skies.
Outlines sprawled across space, as we the teachers directed the flow of logic, because just because is not enough.
Notebooks reveled in evidence, guidelines swarming across the page and the person throbbing with the pulse of the debate delta/ ethos, pathos, logos.

Wrapped nicely in a bow and shining confidence, our eyes stay connected and our minds quicken to the beat of proving the rights of right.
Consumed was the afternoon, crumbling with time/ the flashing blades of words/ the windows that hide debates and the bait.
I am a team leader at the board, people and papers picked, a scramble of ideas and mouths sliding across the icy English paths. The lock is shut as cameras wink secretly and the debaters are sucked into their bubble world, where only the curtains are pulled to see the other side's points and opinions are concocted within the bleached bones of sentence structure.
Here comes the debate, clashing cymbals and clicking calls, the buses/Internet are good/bad, microphones held at high as the debaters resonate with their voices and despite the feathery English words, a brewing discussion breaks free in the classroom.
The judges fold their arms and the verdict is decided. My and Jessie's teams have lost but the forlorn mood is swept away in swirls of my pride knowing that my group has taken upon butterfly wings drifting in the wind of open-minded ness.
The fog is smeared and the unclear debate rules are swiped. The finals are at their wits' end and the team leaders lift their heads to look at the outcome of the coin flip. It is opportunity that granted it so Isabella claims hard work is more important than luck/opportunity but both sides cry out and the walls echo with strength of words and Thomas rests assured that his team has prevailed despite having lost the finals. Glossy prizes are offered, time to call it a day.
Strange are the nights because all the words/have/retired/to/their/star/struck/homes.



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