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GETS in Gambia

 

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Week ending 18th May 2018

The students from Skills Training have been working on Tie and Dye practicals this week. Skills Year 2 were working in the classroom with their teacher, Mr Saihou Darboe.

Outside the students from Year 1 had put their materials through the process and produced some excellent finished cloth. The students pay to bring in the materials so they are free to take home the finished goods to make up into dresses or whatever.

Some of the Skills 1 class posed for pictures under the clothes line to proudly show off what they had done. They often cover their uniforms in their own clothes to protect it during practical sessions.

 

 

 

 

 

Our friends Rudy and Yolanda from Holland brought us seeds and special containers/plugs to allow quick germination, when they visited earlier this year.

 In Lower Basic, we have been letting the children try out starting these off. Mr Jaiteh, LB6 teacher, has been the latest teacher to see what comes of these. Since the names of the seeds are in Dutch, we have had to find out what we would get!

Mrs Cham’s class, LB4, planted seeds earlier this term and now have a tray of seedlings ready to transplant. Amongst them are tomato and sunflower.

 Helen is still getting some external students coming for money to pay school fees for term 3, despite that fact that it is almost half way through. This week Jainaba Badjie came to see us to collect fees for Brikama Methodist Academy, where she is in Grade 11. Some schools seem to be much more relaxed about collecting cash than others.

     
Week ending 11th May 2018

  In Lower Basic 2 one of our Classroom Assistants, Yassin Jammeh, joined Mrs Darboe’s class during a Science lesson on types of soil. Yassin is actually on a full time teacher training course at Gambia College at present but has come to join us for formal teaching practice as part of her course training.  Yassin had taught a Maths lesson earlier in the day, supported by Mrs Darboe. Maths is one of her favourite subjects.

 

The Science class on soil types was very interesting with the Year 2 text book showing how to test for differences in soils found in The Gambia (and many other places of course).

Mrs Darboe demonstrated the differences with several difference soil samples to get her points across.

 

 

On Monday, at the end of school, we had another visit from Blessing David, a Nigerian, and her colleagues, (Mariam Faye, a Gambian and Fabiola Pfaeffli from Swistzerland). Blessing was representing an organisation called Girls Pride Foundation which is seeking to discuss good relationships, sexual abuse, pride and dignity. This compliments the work that we already do at Sunrise through Mr Darboe’s Life Skills course. Blessing hopes to run a club amongst the Skills Training Students (aged 15-25 years) to encourage a wider debate on these topics over the coming weeks.

 

 In the Hall the space was being used again for spreading out Bassin cloth to be marked up, prior to sewing and dyeing patterns of many sorts. The photo shows Fatou Sanyang from Skills 1 intent on her work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

     
Week ending 4th May 2018

Every week we have assemblies in the Hall for each of our schools. Apart from singing activities, many things are also discussed at these events and it always ends with the singing of the Gambian National Anthem.

 This week Tony took pictures of the Lower Basic School children singing with Mr Williams (he is also our school choir master) and then at the end of the Nursery assembly when the teachers carefully manage the children back towards class.

 

The flower beds along-side the Hall area have been replanted  by Mr Mboge, one of our caretakers, who is interested in gardening. He has also helped us with planting some new trees within the school. We now have to carefully water these during the remains of the dry season but from July onwards, heavy rains will help to establish all these plants.

 

Nursery PE was another activity captured this week and it looks like our Classroom Assistant, Mbacho Jallow, is “herding cats” as the expression goes.

 

 

 

 This week in the Hall we also had an exhibition by the Skills Training Year 3 students of their final practicals for Cookery. They made things like Chicken Afra, beef stir-fry with noodles and baobab juice, battered fish and chips and chicken wraps (Shawarma locally).

Students posed in various groups, including the whole class, around the food and the staff were quick to do a final taste test too, of course.

 

     

 Week ending 27th April 2018

The Nursery teachers followed up their visit to Banjul Airport and the beach during the previous week by asking the older children to draw pictures of the day out. Mady Mbye (N3) produced the best of these drawings, shown here.

 

The Skills Training Year 3 students have now returned from their work placements in the Tailoring or Tourist Industry sectors. We were delighted to find that around 70% of the students had been offered the chance to go back to work after school has completed. Some were even working for employers immediately after school already. This is a great result for the students, Sunrise staff and for GETS too.

 We are now offering registration of school places for the 2018/19 academic year. We have very few places except in our N1 entry class and first year of Skills Training because very few who join us then drop out.

 

 

 

This week the 180 Lower Basic children and staff went off to Kachikally Crocodile Pool. They left Sunrise on coaches to travel to the Bakau area to visit the pool and learn about the lives of these reptiles and the sacred pool.

The children had to queue quietly to enter the pool area in a long line.

They listened intently to the explanations, asked questions, took notes and drew pictures.

They asked questions like “What was the age of the oldest crocodile and does it have a name?”, asked by Beatrice Loum. The answer came back – “Charlie is 75 years old!”.

Later the LB children went onto the beach to play and have a picnic.

     
Week ending 20th April 2018

School has now restarted after an extended Easter Holiday, for local council elections, and despite warm sunshine in the middle of the day, the mornings and evenings are quite cool. The children generally come well wrapped up as a result of this.

3rd Year Skills Training Students are coming back to school after their work placements in Term 2 with local businesses. Some have been kept on during the evenings and weekends and others have had offers of long term jobs, proving that they have made a useful contribution to the business where they have worked and that there are vacancies. We were pleased that Fatou Ceesay received a certificate of appreciation from her employer (Maroun’s Bakery). Fatou said she had really enjoyed herself and learnt a lot.

This week the 90 Nursery children went with their teachers and some extra helpers to Banjul Airport to see how it operated. 

They were very excited of course when they left Sunrise and were split into groups.

 

 

They arrived at the Airport by coach and reformed their groups before going into Airport Departures for explanations about how an airport works.

Here they are entering the Departure Lounge with their teachers, Fatou Sanneh and Kaddy Jawara.

Later the children went off to the “Wide Vision” beach at Brufut for fun and games by the sea. They also ate a picnic of course, prepared by the staff before they left school.