What I have learned so far – Kylie Jones

The schools in Tanzania are very welcoming all the teachers and children are so kind and want to learn and know all about our culture and where we are from.  In Prime aspects of school are very different than in America but also very similar.  I would say an aspect that is similar is the detailed busy schedule each class has.  In America I feel students have a busy schedule and at Prime it is the same way. They have 9 thirty five minute periods in which they will learn science, history, vocational skills, Kiswahili, English, civics, sports theory, math and French.  During this time students will have a teacher come in at teach their subjects.

One of the aspects that are different are that the teachers come to the students instead of the students going to the teacher’s classroom.  I jump around from classroom to classroom during the day and teach standard four, five and six.  In America we have classrooms that the teacher has and usually the students move to the teacher.   Also a major difference is resources, students in Tanzania may not all have a textbook so the teacher must borrow from one of the students with a textbook and copy everything down with chalk so the students can copy and have the notes into their textbooks; which leaves little room for activities.

When I first started teaching at Prime I was very disappointed and against how they just write everything down and have the students copy from the board and then have little to no activities applying what they had learned.  But after I actually began teaching and started to understand that these students don’t have the materials they need.  They do not all have textbooks so they have to take that time to copy everything from the board.  I began to start realizing there is a reason for most everything that the schools here do that I might not agree with.  I then understood these schools are doing the best they can with the limited resources they have, and honestly I think teachers are doing everything to the best of their ability, especially with the training and knowledge they have.

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