14 Jul Getting the Full Classroom Experience in Sandema, Ghana
Written by Claire Laibstain, 2014 West Africa Grassroots Education.
After being on the constant go throughout this program, it was nice slowing down our pace and unpacking our bags at the volunteer house in Sandema in the Upper East region of Ghana for ten days. For the first few days, we relaxed, rode bikes around the city, got our hair braided, explored the market and began cooking meals together.
After we were all settled in, we started to get to know the boys at the Horizons Children’s Centre (HCC). The goal of HCC is to help orphans and vulnerable children reach their fullest academic and social potential so that they are able to live a successful life. Although there is a wide age range between the boys that live at the HCC house, they are all super close and consider each other brothers.
We also began the hands-on volunteer aspect of this program in Sandema. We all volunteered at different places including a kindergarten, primary school, disability center and one-on-one work with Joe, the Managing Director at HCC. We all played different roles during our time volunteering, had incredible experiences, and learned loads from our partners!
As I became more comfortable in the classroom, I taught a few math lessons and read story books to the students. The students were excited to learn from a new teacher. My favorite part about being in the Kindergarten classroom was the eagerness and thirst the children had for learning. They loved practicing their handwriting, reading, solving math problems, playing outside, and simply just being at school.
All in all, it’s been quite the experience to observe an educational system different from the one I grew up with and even teach a few lessons!
2014 West Africa Grassroots Education.