Wednesday, 19 September 2012

This was what I came for

Tuesday September 18th

An excellent day. Left the YM at 7:15 so as to avoid a Muzungu disruption of the assembly again and met up with the same young man as yesterday who accompanied me up the hill.  There is a hut/shop opposite the school entrance and I treated the pair of us to a long cold one (bottles of water) before I reported for duty.

Form I and then Form III for maths filled the first three hours. Lessons took the same form as yesterday with a worked example of the topic under consideration being copied from the board prior to a question being done by the students and the setting of homework. 

 Mr Mmary

A very traditional class structure and certainly the work to do at home was extensive. The bell for a thirty minute break rang at the end of Form III’s lesson but the teacher, Mr Masui, the head teacher, ploughed on for another fifteen minutes before releasing the class.  The expectations are set for when I take over.

The Bell

After break I was given the computer room with its one laptop, set mine up as well and worked with pairs of Class III who were released from Physics. Of the students only one had touched a keyboard before but I had written a simple exercise for MS Word and by the end of fifteen minutes they were  opening Word, inputting text, correcting mistakes in their work, saving it and reopening it. You have to completely re-think your methods when the question is asked – “How do I get a capital M”.  The reaction was very positive and they were like sponges as they took up this new knowledge.

It could be argued that for some it might be a case of learning skills that circumstances mean are never really developed, but for the ones who go onto higher education it will be a good start.  Here is a picture of Suphian on the left and Happyness on the right trying to make sense of the Qwerty keyboard.

I didn’t mention that at five this morning the rain was torrential on my corrugated iron roof and whilst at school there was another heavy storm so my laptop was wrapped in a bin-liner in my rucksack as I weaved my, now experienced, way home, but thankfully it was a dry journey and as I sit and write this the view of the ocean is under a completely clear blue sky.


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