Whaea Ashley

“Women have higher rates of participation than men in all categories of unpaid work, both within and outside the household.” —p. 9 Focusing on Women 2005, Statistics New Zealand.

Having been in New Zealand for a month now, my days are starting to take regular shape. I’ve decided to volunteer at the primary school as a literacy tutor several days a week.

The students and I sit in the library for one-on-one literacy time. They read to me, and I help them sound out words, recognize letter combinations, and read with inflection. I also take a turn reading to them (to give them a break from the sometimes arduous labor of reading out loud and to model fluent reading while they follow along). I also ask questions about their comprehension. Really, this last part is mainly talking about the story or poem or article in a natural way. The stories from the leveled readers they’re reading are simple, but very interesting to me. I learned yesterday about catching coconut crabs, hangis, and pounami.

Finally, we do some spelling games. Sailboat spelling was a big hit. I’m trying to figure out how to use the story cube game from my sister in a spelling game.

It’s delightful working with these kids. It’s also fun to get a new name. Fire Ashley. On that note, here’s our flame tree with a tui perched on a branch, singing its gorgeous song.


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