Chesham school in Africa link-up

Bucks Free Press: Elmtree teachers Emma Choules and Sophie Nowlan with pupils from the school Elmtree teachers Emma Choules and Sophie Nowlan with pupils from the school

PUPILS at a school in Chesham have been picked to develop links with one in Zambia as part of a twinning project.

Elmtree School has been linked up with the Katapila School as part of the Connecting Classrooms initiative after being selected for the scheme by the British Council.

Teachers from England and Zambia will take turns to have a go at taking lessons in a foreign country as part of the link-up.

Sophie Nowlan, a year 2 teacher, and Emma Choules, an additional resources provision teacher, will be the first two from Elmtree to head out to Africa.

Miss Nowlan said: "Being a creative teacher encourages students to be creative learners too. I hope to share my attitude that if you can stimulate your students, you have a better chance at keeping them interested in their learning and that if you are able to present material in many different ways, the children will have a better chance of understanding it."

Mrs Choules said: "I understand the huge constraints for the teachers at Katapila - the large classes, the lack of resources, and the rigid Zambian National Curriculum, but I would hope to be able to offer some ideas for alternative ways of teaching.

"My work requires a multisensory approach to learning and I would hope to be able to use some of these skills at Katapila. An important part of the project is to begin to understand this vastly different culture, recognising our similarities and not focusing on our differences."

She added: "We are excited to have this opportunity to visit Zambia and to explore the educational challenges, find out about such a different culture, focus on the positive aspects of the country and hopefully make an impact in the education of the children at Elmtree and Katapila."

The school was chosen for the project in recognition for its commitment to teaching youngsters about global issues.

Headteacher Daphne Dru said: "I am delighted that Elmtree School have been successful in their bid. I look forward to welcoming teachers from Zambia to our school, and to incorporating lots of exciting ideas and activities into our curriculum when Sophie and Emma return."

The Elmtree teachers will be able to take much-needed educational resources with them to Zambia thanks to a donation from the USL Study Hotels group.

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