Saturday, March 5, 2011

School visit

On Wednesday Sue, who is in Nairobi with Nico this week, mailed me and asked if I'd accompany Sharda to the school clubs that afternoon. Grant left his Toyota for me, and after lunch I collected Sharda from her house (two doors down the lane from mine) and off we went. The school is set within the Kimwarer Village in the most idyllic of settings. The trees and beautiful gardens are tended by one adult and after school, the older boys spend fifteen minutes helping him to rake up leaves. The older girls clean the classrooms, readying the ones used by the clubs and others for school the next day.

While waiting for the clubs to commence, Caroline, the Head teacher (we'd call her Headmistress in South Africa) took us on a tour of the school. We met all the learners from the youngest who greeted me enthusiastically to the oldest, most of whom know Sharda well as she's been involved with the school for years.

Later Caroline showed us the dormitories for the learners who  go onto high school in the cities next year. They are boarders even though several have homes just meters away from the school boundaries. When I asked Caroline if they go home on weekends, she said no, only half term and end of term. To my next question of : "So the parents can visit them every weekend?" she replied: "No, only once a month!" This arrangement works very well. Because the children are schooled, housed and fed on the grounds, they're able to concentrate on their studies instead of being involved in herding the goats or caring for younger children after school.
Two of the boarders in their dormitory

Caroline in the senior girls' dorm. Each dorm has an ablution block - see door to right rear of photos 

There are four clubs which meet on Wednesdays after school:  the Wildlife Club, the Science Club, the Art Club and the Journalism Club. Because so many of the older children are involved in these clubs, yet are ardent Scouts, this club is held on a Friday afternoon.

The Journalism club met under the trees  in the school grounds. Isn't this an idyllic setting for inspiriation ?

Sharda and I began by sitting in on the Journalism club. Once the teacher had given the children a topic to work on, we left and visited the other clubs. The Art club children were busy sketching a still life. The Science club was working on an electromagnetic procject. The Wildlife club members were watching a DVD about the wild dogs of Tanzania. After spending an enjoyable time with each club, Sharda and I took our leave promising to return next week with projects of our own which we will share with them. As it was my first visit, I only took a few photos. In future I'll be able to take more and report back in detail about the clubs.


  1. The clubs sound like a wonderful addition to the school week for the students. It's interesting for me to see and hear about the different ways that lucky children are being schooled. I say lucky because I know there are many who cannot go to school. It looks like the school where you took the photos is well funded and the students look quite comfortable. It is, as you say, an idllyic setting for inspiration and learning. I'm sure they are looking forward to the projects you and the other ladies will bring to them :-) Blessings. xx

  2. It looks like a very nice school, Jo, and the clubs are a super idea. Meeting under the trees would, as you said, be inspiring.
    I'm glad you got to visit them, and I'm looking forward to reading about you participating with the students next week.
    Luv, K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  3. What a great learning place. Love the clubs. Kind of strange for the kids to live so near by and not go home or be visited by family more frequently.

  4. The clubs sound a good idea. You are certainly getting involved in the community. Good for you. I'm not sure that I like the idea of the students being kept away from their families for so long. Once a week would be better. In New GUinea the kids who left their family and villages to be educated in the European fashion suffered in the end, If there wasn't enough jobs for them in the towns they became "Rascals" criminals. They didn't want to return to their villages and help with the agriculture gardens so the villagers grew old and didn't have younger ones to sustain the villages. I hope this doesn't happen in Kenya.

  5. How wonderful to see such a well-run and much loved school! They could certainly teach some SA schools a thing or two! The clubs sound so inspired and will provide the participants with a broadbased set of worthwhile skills for the future. I really am very impressed!

    The grounds look marvellous - again, this school could teach a lot of others how to do things properly. I am really looking forward to hearing/seeing more in future posts, Jo!!!

  6. Perfect place to learn without having to have "life", interupt!
    Hope you are well and happy Jo!!

  7. Sounds fantastic. What a great start to life. Love Caroline (via Coco) xx

  8. That's very interesting to learn about the school there--for example, the kids board there, even if their home is just meters away! It's wonderful that there are so many kids active in the after-school clubs there. The kids look so sharp in their white shirts and black trousers/skirts.

  9. The school grounds and dormitories look very nice and a great place for learning. The clubs sound great for enriching the learning experience. I'm sure you'll enjoy being involved.


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