Field Notes - January 2015

Field Notes*

pat-yonka*Pat Yonka , a credentialed Montessori elementary teacher from Michigan, is working with elementary teachers at La’Angum school. This is the first of many “reports from Ghana.”

January 2015:

Alice and Pat are residing in a guesthouse in Langbinsi to be closer to La’Angum School. As she describes it, “We are closer to the school but the road is not really a road, it is more like a ditch with rock formations over which we must travel- Mumprusi people do not need thrill rides – the roads provide more than anyone needs!

On Wednesday January 7 we held our first meeting with the La’Angum staff at our lodgings.

Each member of the staff contributed money, cooking labor, and expertise to provide a meal of guinea fowl, rice and sauce, and soft drinks. I am deeply, deeply humbled by the fact that people who have so very little are so willing to share so very much - this staff is a community that is open and loving, truly they are something to behold!

After the meal each person outlined his or her responsibilities at La’Angum, including information about each of the classes. It was a productive meeting and set a positive tone for further interactions.

On Thursday we were able to greet the children, deliver water filtration materials [a separate and amazing story in itself], and observe as teachers and students prepared their classrooms for Monday. I drew a floor plan and have started an inventory of Montessori materials present in each classroom. Tomorrow I inventory learning materials in Grades 3,4,5 and then start to clean and organize the supply room and continue to inventory materials. I am also rating the materials I see according to a 1 -2 -3 system: 1 meaning good condition; 2 meaning so-so condition; and, 3 meaning get a new one!

Our first major work time will be Saturday, January 17th from 9 until 2:30. Each classroom will have specific needs that I will address. The La’Angum teachers and staff are open and eager to learn.

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PAMBE Ghana is a 501(c)(3) registered charitable organization.