In my week of observing the area of docencia I got to spend an afternoon watching the cooking class practice decorating cakes. This was a hard task. I had no cake to decorate, and secretly was hoping that we’d get to eat all the cakes at the end of the two-hour session. Unfortunately for me, I asked what they were going to do with them, and one of the women looked at me (like, duh!) and said: “We sell them!” Some of the cakes turned out of a higher quality than others, due to various levels of experience, but all looked tasty.
The brightly colored queques de payasos—clown cakes—were both for practice but also practicality. While the community and holistic environment created within each class offered at the CCBN is a priority for the Center, for many students, the skills that they are learning are for the direct purpose of getting a job, starting a business, or generally gaining a professional advantage.
Moving onto the computer class, I was a guest-presenter for about one hour. Primarily a class of young women with a few men and one older señora, they were in their last day of class. Having learned the basics of computing—Word, Excel, how to use email, search online—they spent their final three days setting up their own blogs. I came as an “expert” to explain my experience with blogs. I showed them my past (albeit feeble attempts) at blogging, and how to do a few basic things with them.
So what did I learn from observing cakes and computers?
Gained a better understanding of the integral education offered at the CCBN
everything that students feel able to sell, they start doing so right away, even while still learning (i.e. clown-cakes)
I am incredibly privileged on many levels, but haven’t ever appreciated my education to the extent I do know. Things I take for granted, like knowing the basics of computing and being fluent in English, are in high demand in Nicaragua
I’m going to start blogging more (in order to share people’s stories!)
I want to take the cooking class and will totally make my own clown cake someday…