A class of 7 & 8 year olds draws life in Palestine.
“What are the things we have here in Azzun Atma?” asks a teacher from her class of second graders. Many hands rise, as children want to tell the visitors about their village. “Trees.” “Shops.” “Oranges.” “School.”
Two weeks ago, we had the pleasure of spending a morning in one of the schools in the village of Azzun Atma. Its trees, shops, schools and around 2,000 people are entirely surrounded by the separation wall and four Israeli settlements. No Palestinians are allowed inside of Azzun Atma unless they have a proper permit saying that they live in the village or go to school there.
The wall surrounding Azzun Atma.
Kids from Azzun Atma Passing the Checkpoint on the way to school.
Our team goes to Azzun Atma a few times a week to monitor the checkpoint at the entrance of the village, where about 90 children and 40 teachers pass each day to get to school.
At the school, we asked the children if they would be willing to draw some pictures about their life in Azzun Atma. The photos that follow are some of the drawings we received, pieces of the stories of some 7 and 8 year olds who live and go to school there.
Amal, with her drawing of a house, trees, sunshine and clouds in Azzun Atma. Photo EAPPI/Z. Godfrey-Davies.
Baha drew his school and some houses. He also drew the wall, two soldiers, and some trees surrounded by barbed wire. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta
Fatemeh drew a house, some trees and cars waiting to pass a soldier at the checkpoint. Photo EAPPI/Z. Godfrey-Davies
Hamza drew a house, an apple tree and a banana tree. When I asked him who the people were, he said that the one at the bottom of the page is a soldier with a gun, and that the small one is a boy. Hamza says that the soldier wants to kill the boy. Photo EAPPI/Z. Godfrey-Davies
Heba drew a soldier stopping a nurse and ambulance from passing at the checkpoint. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta.
Malak with her drawing of a house. Photo EAPPI/Z. Godfrey-Davies
Mohamad drew a picture of cars waiting at the checkpoint, the wall in Azzun Atma and his school. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta.
Raneem drew a picture of car’s waiting to pass the soldiers at the checkpoint. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta
When I saw Sadee’s drawing I asked her if the person inside the house was holding a plate of food. She told me that it wasn’t a house, it was a checkpoint, and that the person was a soldier holding a gun. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta.
Samer with his drawing of his school, a tree, and a mom holding a baby. Photo EAPPI/E. Kulta.
Zeina told me that she drew a picture of someone being arrested by a soldier. Photo EAPPI/Z. Godfrey-Davies