The Nyaka Primary School opened in January 2003 in founder Twesigye “Jackson” Kaguri’s childhood home, the village of Nyakagyezi in Kanungu District. Today the Nyaka Primary School serves students from “nursery class” through Primary 7. Nyaka students do not have to pay any school fees and are also provided “textbooks, uniforms, shoes, two meals every school day, medicine, and scholastic materials for free”. (https://www.nyakaschool.org/students/primary.php)
The guesthouse where our team from Colorado is staying is directly adjacent to this precious school.
It is a joy to awaken each morning before making our trek to the Secondary School and sip coffee on our front patio watching as students make their way by foot from surrounding homes and villages. For some, arriving to school on time meant leaving their homes by 5:00 am. But arrive they did, with smiles on their faces and a glorious energy for the morning assembly, breakfast and classes.
Students line up for the daily morning assembly by assigned classroom where they are welcomed by teachers and fellow student leaders to join in songs and a flag raising ceremony. The experience is one that draws students into their learning community and affirms relationships within their Nyaka family. I am inspired to find a way to bring something similar on a smaller scale to my sixth grade science classroom. Perhaps an extension to my weekly “Monday Motivational!” video clips and discussions? Always learning, always brainstorming…
I filmed a portion of a morning assembly at the Nyaka Primary School on June 17, 2016. Watch for the motivating and powerful young man who leads his classmates in song. Is there any doubt that Nyaka nurtures future community leaders?! It was a privilege to be in the presence of such young talent and charisma!
Before leaving Colorado, my friend and teaching colleague Liz Healy made a very generous donation of books for us to bring and to deliver to the Nyaka Primary School. It was my pleasure to personally travel with Liz’s books across three continents to be certain students received these brand new texts. I was escorted by head teacher Ahumuza Annet to three classrooms after she carefully sorted the books by appropriate reading level.
As we entered each classroom students rose to greet us by saying hello and sharing a song unique to their particular grade level classroom. The beauty of these voices!
In unison: “Education is the key!”
In Karuru Alice’s classroom I briefly introduced myself, complimented the students’ attention and dedication to their studies, and expressed my gratitude at their delightful hospitality.
Annet and I passed out Liz’s donated books together and it was a delight to see and hear students begin to read them out loud. There is something beautifully universal about opening up a brand new book and letting the stories unfold.
Primary 7 classroom with their new books.
I was fortunate to leave a little piece of my family with the Primary 3 classroom. These two books were in my daughters’ reading collection growing up and I hope Nyaka students will enjoying having these science resources in their own library.
Thank you so much for all of your support of ecologicalAction!
Amy Weeks (aka Abbie’s proud mom)