Lucie and Jack have been in Unguja Ukuu for 2.5 months and they’ve just left to continue their world tour. Here are Lucie’s thoughts on the experience and some photos from her last few days in Zanzibar.
I’ve really enjoyed my past 2 months with Safari English Club and I’m sad it’s coming to an end. I‘ve become really fond of the students as we’ve got to know each other and it’ll be hard to say goodbye. I’ve been working with Stina in the advanced class which has been great, having someone to bounce ideas off in class and plan sessions with. We started working on goal setting and understanding skills and qualities and we discovered that what we thought we might cover in 3/4 days would actually take a couple of weeks as there is quite a range of levels in the class. Over time we have got into a good routine of finding ways to extend and simplify what we have been teaching, though this can be a challenge and doesn’t always work out perfectly. We all muddle together and make it work as best we can.
We’ve tried to incorporate creative activities such as role play, making vision boards, using drawing and collage which I think they have really enjoyed. My favourite days are always those where the students have had time up on their feet, mingling with each other, using the language they’ve been learning. They can be quite shy taking part in group discussions or answering questions in front of the class so I’m always happy to see how much they‘ve taken in during their lively mingles because you wouldn’t always know it otherwise! I think it’s so funny that as the teacher how you can leave the class with a completely different energy level depending on the reaction from the class. Hearing them confidently playing with the language amongst each other makes me leave with a buzz. I think it’s the same for them too.
‘Project Sea Life’ grew organically after watching a documentary from Kenya about plastic pollution. The students were really interested in the topic and one thing rolled on to another. We enjoyed making posters about the issue which we then joined together as one big picture and we made a video where the students all chose something to say to the camera. After we decided to continue the plastic pollution theme by doing a small ‘Reduce Plastic Waste Campaign’ in Stone Town with seven students who volunteered. I was so proud of the way they handled this experience. They spoke to members of the public (69 people in total!) at Forodhani Gardens to raise awareness on the issue in English and Swahili and then approached hotels and restaurants to encourage them to reduce their use of disposable plastics. They took it in their stride and supported each other when having conversations with hotel staff and management. They were amazing!
I’m glad I was able to be part of Safari English Club even for a short time, and encourage volunteers to keep coming and working with this curious and energetic group :)