Recently the students studying abroad in Moscow visited a typical day care and interacted with a class of 6-year-olds. The day began with a PowerPoint presentation to teach the children about America. The Russian kids learned about Pennsylvania, the Amish, and Washington D.C. When the pictures of President Putin and President Obama appeared on the screen one student, when asked to identify the American president, excitedly shouted out “Poroshenko!’ (the name of the Ukrainian president), to the amusement of the adults. After the presentation each student was led by several Russian children to see their classroom and have tea. After tea and snacks the room exploded into a frenzy of activity as play time began. Afterwards the Dickinson students learned about the numbering system, a remnant of Soviet times, which is used by the school to help organize the children. Each child is assigned a number which corresponds to a towel, cubby, comb, and bed. When nap time comes around, the students each have a real bed to spend their daily two hour nap.
Before leaving some of the Russian children gave the Dickinson students drawings and hugs!
Maureen Marsh ’17 said, “We learned about two key differences between American and Russian day cares. First, each Russian day care has a speech therapist, a psychologist, and a cook to prepare breakfast and lunch. Second, between the ages of 4-7, students stay in the same class together with the same teacher for those years.”
Aubrey Cearley ’17 commented, “I am ready to return to day care after spending an exciting day with the children.”