Last week, my first week of working with Education Beyond Borders in Kenya, I had the fortune to visit four schools. Like the British Columbia schools I am familiar with, they are vibrant and engaging places. In both areas of the world this has little to do with location, resources, or buildings, but has everything to do with students and teachers. My first visit was an impromptu arrival at Eburru Primary while on our way to Cypress Prmary. Even though my colleagues and I were unexpected, we were warmly welcomed. On to Cypress Primary we were treated to a school assembly, songs, and another warm welcome. We had the great fortune to visit each class in this school and were put on the spot to conduct mini-lessons. It only took a grand total of two seconds to feel comfortable at the front of the first classroom, and the next hour and a half flew by with activity. laughter, and sharing. (On another occasion I may share the experience of explaining ice hockey to one of the classes.)
The next day it was off to Muriricua Primary in Kaiptangwany. The welcome that we received from students was simply overwhelming. I was whisked away to be shown all the highlights of the school. However, my personal highlight of the visit was witnessing the reuniting of Canadian and Kenyan teachers that had not seen each other for a year. The expression, emotions, and enthusiasm on display spoke volumes of the bond that caring teachers can share.
The final visit on Thursday was to Gitare Secondary outside of Gilgil. It was the last day of session before the August holiday and we were present for the closing ceremony. As students and staff spoke in front of the entire school assembled on the grass, their messages focused on character, perseverance, work ethic, and respect. Each teacher that spoke emphasized how much he or she wished for the future success of the students. The evidence of their caring was in more than their words: their passion, and their stories spoke to the true depth.
With last week’s visits, I have now had the fortune to visit schools on four continents. It is promising, and reassuring to have witnessed schools all over the world that are all about people, and values. It is inspiring to meet teachers that want to show visitors their students more than anything else. People caring about connecting people – schools are filled with them.
in other news…
-This week has been very very busy, but filled with so much learning and making connections. Hope all is well with you.
–Currently Reading, Listening & Watching page has finally been updated a bit.