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250319 Tanz 7

High School: Safari Stories

Reports from students on this year’s Tanzania Expedition and some Calendar updates for the last two weeks of term.

Tanzania Expedition 2019 - Reflections from Matrix, Maud, Julia and Paola

School Building Service at Imbaseni School

As we arrived at the camp, all of the students were divided into three groups with different students from different schools. Those three groups had to work on different community projects from each different days. Our group did the school building project on the first day. We were divided into three groups upon arrival at Imbaseni school. Each group was assigned a different job: cement mixing, installing windows, plastering, bricklaying and adding a door. We thought it would be very challenging and powerful activity because we were actually required to shovel, push wheelbarrows, mix cement, move a certain amount of rocks and soil. We were so tired because we had to stay in the sun for a few hours and do non-stop hard work. However, this activity was very rewarding because we knew that we can help kids in Tanzania to get the chance to get an education in a proper classroom by doing this work. We also had the opportunity to eat lunch at Seeway, a residential home for children founded by Wendy and Rebecca where we were able to meet some of the children in their center. As we spent time there, we were able to share our experiences and knowledge with kids. We played football with the children, braided their hair or taught them how to use cameras. We made such unforgettable memories with kids there and had a lot of fun. After lunch, we returned to the work site to carry on with the work. In the afternoon, people there were asked to build school desks for some of the pre-existing classrooms. As we were making the desks, we heard about the poor condition of the classrooms. We were told that there are approximately one hundred children in each room and five to six children have to share one small desk in the classroom. We could then imagine how much they want to get an education and are passionate about their future.

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Safari was a nice and relaxing part of the trip. It consisted of two full days driving through the Tarangire National Park. The national park is about 3.5 hours away from Shamba Kipara Camp, where we were based. For two days, We mostly spent the time on a huge roof open truck and saw lots of special animals such as giraffes, zebras, african elephants, wildebeest, african buffalo, antelope, baboons, a quite rare leopard turtle, the Kori bustard bird (a beautiful blue bird), even some lions and many more. We were lucky to have seen an African elephant crossing the road right in front of our truck. Also, the guide from the National Park was really fun and good to talk to. He gave us all the information about each animals’ characteristics, a way to identify their gender and also a special story about the Maasai tribe, a Nilotic ethnic tribe in northern Tanzania. At night, we camped in a wild campsite within the National park. This was the most exciting but a little bit scary experience since there was no electric fence and all of the animals were around the perimeter of our campsite and they would be able to get as close to our tents as they would want!

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Trekking and service to families

The community project was different from the other days. It was challenging but rewarding. It consists of two days: one of trekking and one of a service project. On the first day, we walked around the village and we were able to see many different kinds of plants such as avocado tree and eucalyptus tree. Also, we saw a beautiful waterfall. On the way to go to the campsite, we visited the coffee farm area and we could see how they grind coffee beans. When we were at the campsite, we had to erect the tent by ourselves, cook our own dinner and keep the place clean. It was challenging because for us, it was an unfamiliar experience and we were not sure if we could do these all by ourselves. However, our group helped each other and cooked a delicious meal and we worked together to set all of the tents up tents contributed to keep our campsite clean. We recognised all this work demanded teamwork and collaboration.

The most unforgettable memory from this night was when we had dinner that we cooked ourselves, zebras came closer to our campsite and we all stopped talking and stayed in silence to observe zebras.

The next day, when we get to the village, we were able to meet the local families who we were going to be helping that day and have a conversation with them and get to know their life conditions and problems. In our group, we were divided into three groups and each group went to a local villager’s house to help their family. The three different groups each had different tasks. One was to install the solar panel and lighting system into the family’s house so that they could have safe indoor lighting for the first time. This would also help the children’s future as it would mean that they could study safely after dark, instead of using a lamp which they had done in the past. The second was making a smokeless stove. We used rocks, dust and animal waste to create this. This meant that it was a safer environment for cooking for the family. The last task was the most challenging work. We had to construct a goat shed for the newly donated goat. We used hammers, nails and sawed wood to do this, and were all out of our comfort zone as it was something we had never had to do before. We worked well as a team and even got to name the goat for the family at the end of the project.

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Visiting SWTz Day Care (Matrix)

The last day for me was truly what makes this trip one of the most memorable trips in my entire life.

As a result of the donations I raised in the memory of my sister, Matheryn Naovaratpong, Rebecca and Wendy from Seeway arranged a special ceremony dedicated to Matheryn. The ceremony took place at SWTz Day Care, a new community nursery school that Seeway had built with the help of students from many different Nord Anglia schools around the globe (St. Andrews was one of them!). The daycare was initiated by Seeway after their recognition of the importance of early years education for children in Tanzania.

“Over 60% of children in Tanzania start primary school aged seven years having had no early years education. They have lost out on the most vital years for learning. In our area, there are few affordable AND good quality opportunities for young children to attend nursery school.”

The daycare was originally designed for a handful of students, however, many more students attended Seeway than they were expecting, meaning they had to build more classrooms to meet the needs of those children. From my visit to the nursery, it is clear that the children who attend the daycare are receiving a range of educational opportunities. They can speak and understand English to a very impressive extent regarding their ages.

Additionally, the SWTz Day Care is in the process of opening two new classrooms for children with special needs following Martina’s concern about how children with special needs are being treated in Tanzania. They named one of the classrooms “Matheryn classroom” in the memory of my sister and I was given the honour to be the one to open up the classroom, by cutting a ribbon and giving a speech. Rebecca and Martina gave a little tour of the classroom and introduced us to the very first child that will be placed in the special needs unit. We then had a cake together to celebrate what we have achieved so far - with help from schools and donations from all around the world. I then gave them a portrait of Matheryn to put up on the classroom wall, so that she could be looking at the children in the very classroom that was named after her.

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Calendar Updates

We’re into the last two weeks of term, so my Calendar extract below is getting shorter, but we are also still adding events:

  • This week and next we have our rearranged House Athletics events

  • On Thursday this week, there will be a combined Second Hand Uniform Sale and Lost Property Claim Day in the Atrium - Thank you to the PTG for all their work on this.

  • On Friday this week, we see the return of PTG Friday Night Drinks at Wishbeer

  • The rearranged Fun Day Raffle will now take place in our Songkran Assemblies - High School students have books of tickets to sell between now and Thursday 4th April, when all ticket stubs, money and unsold tickets must be returned to the Cashier in the High School Office.

Last day of ECAs and Sports Squads for Term 2

Please be sure to check out this link to find out when your child’s ECAs and sports squads at both Primary and High School will end for Term 2.

Leavers’ Survey

Thank you to all those families who have already completed the Leavers Survey that was sent out by our Admissions Department earlier this term.

If you have not already done so, we would appreciate your response as soon as possible. Work is already underway to ensure that our classes for next year are balanced and will give every student the best possible learning experience, with our Admissions Team knowing how many new families we will be able to welcome into our community. Please complete this Google Survey as soon as possible.


Roo Stenning (roo.st@standrews.ac.th)
Head of High School

250319 hs calendar

The school’s full Google Calendars are available on Moodle, accessible via http://calendar.standrews.ac.th/.