Story Power Camp Day 1, 11-12 year olds: Writing Letters to Kenya

Hello! My name is Jessie and I am an intern for LitWorld this summer. This Fall I am going to be a senior at Wesleyan University, and my major is American Studies with a concentration in cultural anthropology. I am from Napa, California. I wanted to be a LitWorld intern because I love listening to the stories of children and am interested in learning more about different approaches that address educational inequity in the U.S. and all over the world.

So far, the interns have spent most of the summer planning for Story Power camp, which has been a wonderful mix of brainstorming ideas from our own experiences and learning from some special guests. Another thing that the interns have been doing is helping the LitWorld team prepare for their trip to Kenya, where they are heading tomorrow!

Yesterday was our first day with the campers. It has been great to finally meet them these past two days. We thought that since LitWorld is visiting schools in Kenya, the kids at Story Power Camp in Harlem might like to write letters to kids their own age that live halfway across the world.

They wrote about their summers, their families, their favorite sports, games and foods. Their curiosity about their prospective penpals was inspiring. All sorts of questions came up about Kenya and the lives of the children who live there. What does it look like there? What sorts of animals do they have? What do they learn in school? These sentiments were eloquently summed up by Tateyania, who closed her letter with the sincere affirmation, “It would be interesting to know more about your life.”

I was pleasantly surprised at how well they were able to express themselves on paper. It was an energizing start to a summer that will be packed with stories, writing and fun!

- Jessie