Connecting Classrooms - Kenya Visit

I was asked to represent Darwen Aldridge Community Academy in a “Connecting classrooms” seminar in Kenya. The seminar was organised and led by the British Council and the objective was to set a partnership between schools in the UK and schools in African countries.

The seminar was taking place in Naivasha, one and a half hours from Nairobi. We had little opportunities to discover Kenya but what we had the chance to see was extraordinary and eye opening. We visited a secondary school where we were extremely well received by the staff and pupils. Pupils danced and sang and then we planted trees together.

This experience was very much multi-cultural as I met representatives from different sub-Saharan countries. After a few work sessions, I settled a Partnership with two clusters in Tanzania and Zambia. I spent two days working with the representatives from Tanzania and Zambia and we built strong working relationships. We worked on the planning of the activities for the first year and on the budget for the 2010-2011 financial year. We are aiming at exchanging work in order to enrich our pupils learning and provide them with an insight of other cultures.

Different activities have been planned and all the faculties at the Academy should be contributing at some point to the partnership. Pupils will start by introducing themselves through letters but also videos of where they come from, they lives and cultures. Products, crafts will be created and sent to partners and sold at the market in the African countries and in the DART Gallery in Darwen in order to embed Entrepreneurship within the Partnership.

Pupils will also exchange views on forestation and training and coaching in sport activities.
At the Academy, pupils and staff are responding extremely well to the partnership. Already letters are being written by year 8 pupils and solar panels are going to be built by year 7 as part of the forestation project.

I am now looking forward to receiving some work from our partners and share it with our pupils.
This seminar was simply a wonderful experience and I truly hope that the partnership will have some successful learning experience for our community.