Classes in our partner school at Mbollet-Ba in The Gambia have a curriculum set by their Government. They have to follow it strictly and teachers are checked monthly to ensure it’s being taught as it should be. For maths and science the subjects are recognisably close to what a Salusbury student would do. Everything is in English. Literacy is a bit different, as no children speak English at home, so it’s a bit like learning a foreign language for many. The timetable also includes Religious Education in the Muslim faith, and Integrated Studies. This is about Gambian and African ways of life, and whenever Salusbury students have joined a class at Mbollet-Ba, they have particularly enjoyed this subject.
Writing up the lesson on the blackboard for pupils to copy into their notebooks has been the teachers’ method up to now. But the Mbollet-Ba teachers recently asked if we could help them to do better. They wanted the pupils to read the materials for themselves on the page, and find their own way around. Good idea, and our partnership has fundraised to buy the approved text book. The stacks of shiny new books for year 2,4 and 5 arrived in October. At the start and close of each lesson, teacher gets a volunteer to pass out the books and collect them again. It’s a good step.
Ask your class teacher at Salusbury about getting closer to our African partnership. Parents and children can join in as a fundraiser, a volunteer, or an organiser.
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