Rugarama School

Visiting our Link School in Uganda February 2018

During half-term, Rebecca Bone (head teacher of Winterslow Primary School) and myself, Sonja Mawdsley (Year 6 teacher) were lucky enough to visit our link school in Africa, thanks to a grant from the British Council.

During the last few years, the two schools have kept in contact via emails, letters and visits to Uganda and England. However, this was my first time, and the experience was so much better then expected. Uganda is hillier and greener than I was aware, with banana plantations everywhere.

We attended a service in Rukungiri church, which is the nearest town to our school, where the vicar was talking about the stress of finding enough money for school fees which were due in that week. However, on arriving at our link school, you would not have been aware of this, as we were greeted by the oldest children singing as they danced down the red dust track towards us. This was followed by an amazing welcoming dance in the small cowpat floored church by the school – and I have shown the video of this to our school children. They were so engaged watching it in assembly, that they spontaneously started clapping in time with the beat.

Despite the classrooms having only wooden benches and a blackboard – no glass in the windows, no proper floor, no electricity – the children were all keen to learn and enthusiastic to take part in the lessons which Rebecca and I delivered about seasons and the British countryside.

Hundreds of photographs were taken and the children in Winterslow school have been seeing these, as well as the banana-leaf dolls and plastic-bag football we were given to bring home. Our World Book Day last week was all based around books about Uganda and we hope that the children here are really seeing the benefit of this fantastic link.