The second week at Blantyre Girls school began with training seven standard five girls in the Scotland Reads paired reading method with a view to pairing them up with the less able English readers in the class. They were very excited to come to the library and picked up the method very quickly. They also enjoyed choosing books to take home.
This led to the realisation that we could organise the library to make room for the new books and give the teachers the opportunity to take all the text books that were filling up shelf space into their classes.
The whole school got involved and there was a hive of activity over the next few days.
The enthusiasm from the pupils and teachers was overwhelming and it’s fantastic to see the library full of enthusiastic readers.
We finished the week by having a CPD for teachers on Paired Reading and Reading Strategies. Again, the teachers got wholeheartedly involved and were enthusiastic to implement the methods in class.
This week, as I passed classes on my way to teach, I noticed teachers using not only strategies from the CPD session but strategies we had used in class during the first week.
The third week involved training more reading leaders from standards 5 and 6 and we paired them up with pupils from standard 5 again. It was lovely to see the girls forming friendships with each other and developing leadership skills.
It’s such a privilege getting to know the teachers and we had no shortage of volunteers to oversee the running of the library and the paired reading project when we leave. Again, we had a CPD session with Anastasia and Gladys who are very creative and keen to make the library a success.
After the second week at school, we went overnight to Mvuu camp where we went on an evening, a sunrise and a water safari. Seeing the animals in the natural habitat, was an experience never to be forgotten.
This weekend, we are all at Lake Malawi which is breathtaking. The journey gave us a chance to see life in Malawi as we passed the various villages, markets, political rallies for the election next year, weddings and funerals.
It’s been such an amazing experience that we will find it hard to leave the school and the new friends we have made but know that we have made lifelong friendships and have wonderful memories.