A Picture is Worth A Thousand Words

I recently visited the intercultural school at Puerto Firmeza, which I have written about frequently on this blog. I was not expected that day, and so I had the opportunity to see the school in its normal day-to-day activity.

What struck me in this visit was how the school is now successfully unfolding– in terms of its curriculum, its artistic and craft activities, its strengthening of Shipibo identity and the development of permaculture as a key part of the educational process.

Rather than write extensively about this, I thought I would try and illustrate this through a number of photographs.

Two students in the newly built cultural center, which will be used to teach traditional Shipibo crafts such as wood carving and making bows and arrows for hunting.
Our permaculture expert, Marcos Urquia, engaged in conversation with one of the Shipibo teachers at the school, symbolizing the union between permaculture and education at the school.
The day I visited the school, Professor Paolo was engaged in mask making with students at secondary level. These masks will be dried, painted with traditional Shipibo designs and then used in a theater production of a Shipibo myth
Don Rafa’s presence is increasingly felt at the school as well as within the community. As caretaker, permaculture technician, healer and sabio (elder), he will soon be teaching traditional crafts to boys in the afternoons.



Professor Paolo has also been active with the students helping them decorate the walls of the classrooms











Outside the classroom environment, the permaculture project is developing further as compost areas and a chicken rearing center are being built. Each family is going to contribute one chicken so that in six months, alongside the production of traditional food-crops, the school will offer meals to students.




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