In response to the request of the director of the kindergarten, H., in Kafr A-Dik, we joined Iris to Iris: one is an art teacher in the Seminar for Early Childhood Education, and the second is a psychologist (both of them are interested in joining MachsomWatch). We had traveled together 3 weeks ago for an introductory visit, which included, in addition to the primary meeting and learning about the needs and possibilities, an example of an activity for the children. The kindergarten serves 80 children from 4 - 6 years old, and is operated by the director, a professional, and 2 assistants. Today was our second visit. The activity was planned from the start by Iris A., while we and the staff assisted her. This time, the children created tops made of cardboard; sections of the tops (in Arabic: "Forfore") were prepared ahead of time and the children drew and painted on them and then put them together and played with them with the teacher, under the supervision of Iris A., along with games that could be played with the tops. (This activity was not connected to Hanukkah but rather to the skills of the children in operating the tops). There was also a meeting with the teacher and staff of the kindergarten and both of our Irises answered professional questions and drew conclusions with the Director of the kindergarten about the activity and it purposes. Photos are attached. During the meeting, the Director talked about activities that she had done after the first meeting and about the responses of the children to the activity. Questions were asked about the problems which arise in the class and about difficult behavior of the children; about follow-up on the development of the children, and about the enrichment of the programs in the kindergarten. In the next meeting, which was set for January, we will try to organize a tour to an Israeli Arab-speaking kindergarten and visit a workshop at the Seminar. The project described here is a pilot which, if it succeeds as we hope, we will try to extend to more kindergartens.
However - without the army and the checkpoints it is impossible to conclude the report! At the entrance to the road leading to the village, 4-5 soldiers were standing who stopped us and politely explained that they were guarding our safety, and while "guarding our safety" were also interested to know what we were doing there and warned us that there is stone-throwing there and asked about our permission to be there. Afterward, they allowed us to enter, but not before warning us that it was at our own risk.
On the way back, there was no need, so it seemed, to guard our safety anymore, since the soldiers had happily disappeared. There were no unusual incidents to report on the way back.