The Wrong Ebrima

Funny miscommunication at school today. I was doing some individual work with the students in Grade 3 – I was assessing how confident they were with their understanding of number by doing a simple matching game in the library. After I had played the game with one girl called Maram I asked her to tell Ebrima Jallow to come to the library to play the game. Ebrima is the next person in the class register and I had been slowly but surely working my way through the whole grade that morning. Marram looked incredulous and slightly confused at this request. I repeated in both Wolof and English and she finally went off looking perplexed. Five minutes passed and there was still no sign of Ebrima so I went to the Grade 3 class to get him myself. I extracted Ebrima whilst noticing that Maram had not returned to class but gave it little thought. Kids are often out of class here. Twenty minutes later whilst I was finishing up playing the game with another child an older man, perhaps forty years old, comes into the room, looking at me expectantly. We greet each other and I tell him I am working with the children today, gently hinting that he could leave the library. Marum then reemerges and tells me she has brought Ebrima Jallow to play the game. Turns out Ebrima Jallow is also the name of her father and she had run all the way home from school to tell her father that the strange foreigner that works at the school wants to play a game with him.

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