Yesterday was our last day of school. Our activities of the day were the same as they were on Wednesday but with Dr. Laycock, Andrew, and Dayana constructing Martian Landers and Ralph and I talking about survival on Mars. After sharing ideas between the teams, the final day was even more successful than the day before it. Both groups were able to charge my fitbit with solar energy (much to my pleasure), generate oxygen using electrolysis, land many of their astronauts successfully, and several students even claimed to hear some static with the crystal radios they made. Even more importantly, the students demonstrated their capacity to learn, and retain, the scientific content that we were teaching when they used some of the knowledge that was talked about last year to help inform their decisions this year for the temperature activity. I am truly in awe of how intelligent the students are and how enthusiastic they are to be learning. I couldn’t be happier that they enjoyed the activities that I helped to create.
After our final activities were over, Fr. Lesley invited us to have a lunch with him and several members of his staff in our honor. I am completely humbled to have a lunch in Haiti that occurred thanks, in part, to some actions that I did. Further, Fr. Lesley did an amazing toast that was quite moving. As a token of our friendship with the school, we exchanged signed posters. The lander activity used posters to illustrate the different means of landing on Mars. During one of the sessions, Dr. Laycock had the ingenious idea of having the students sign the posters so that way before we left, Fr. Lesley and the team could sign and exchange the posters so that each group had a copy as a symbol of our cooperation.
The experience of teaching the Haitian students is something that I will never forget. I am honored to have had this opportunity and want to thank everyone that made it possible. Thank you Dayana and Ralph for helping us lead the lessons and translating for us, Dr. Giles and Connie for having the center be possible, Dr. Lewis for helping me come up with ideas for activities, Andrew for providing technological advise and expertise to advance the activities, Fr. Lesley and his staff for opening up the school to us, and last, but certainly not least, Dr. Laycock for choosing me to join him on this expedition and for trusting me to help make the activities. I hope to be back again.