I am back in Panauti at Joining Hands Nepal, following up on the visit we made here last year. After meeting with Himal when I first arrived in Nepal last month, we decided to shake things up a bit by focusing this year’s workshop on teachers and kids rather than medical personnel.
So yesterday morning some of the kids helped me prep the teaching materials and then we went over to a nearby primary school. We followed a similar format to last year’s community teaching, but added in some extra activities to help teachers think about how to use simple IMT protocols as a starting point for teaching about other things: anatomy, meditation, teamwork, even art and writing projects based on “the heart” or “my brain.” It would be pretty fun to come back here next year and see poetry about feet!
I especially liked one of the activities I added in for this workshop: having volunteers come up and stick numbered cut-outs to a drawing of a human body. Creating a map like this made the concept of process centers concrete and colorful, and it was a simple activity that was interesting for both the kids and teachers. I would definitely recommend this one, with or without enhancements of all kinds.
Until we have a resource page up, I’m putting the outline I used for this workshop in its own post. We ended up doing the second half of it back at the children’s home, where it was easier for me to focus on just the kids. Tomorrow we’re headed to Krishna Prasad Hospital hospital to treat patients, and I found that we needed to have some really focused practical time with our little manual therapists. It is going to be so much fun to see them in action tomorrow.
My favorite part of the whole day having the kids choose a name for their manual therapy group and create badges to wear to the hospital. I found laminated pass-holders on neck strings and brought a box of blank notecards for them to draw on. I loved this activity. It got them working on how they wanted to present themselves and gave them some great critical thinking projects like: What would I want to know if someone wanted to put their hands on me in a hospital? Which pieces of information about me are most important in this situation (Name = Very important; Roll No. in school = Not so important).
In the end, they worked as a team to develop a layout for their ID badges on a whiteboard, and then got up at 7:30 in the morning and spent over an hour making them. I had showed them how they could official-ize their badges by drawing a border, and they figured out they could make multi-level borders. When we finally piled in to the van this morning, they kept double checking to make sure everyone had their ID cards. It really gave them an identity as specialists and a feeling of importance.
Conveniently, their home name lends itself perfectly to their new community service activity. Ladies and gentlemen, I am please to introduce you to…
…Joining Hands Therapy!