11 July 2011

Classroom in a Box

Imagine living in a village so remote that learning to read is only a distant dream.

There are many faced with this exact problem in the delta region of the Zambezi and because of this Anne Herbert, a Mercy Air staff member with 27 years teaching experience and Caitlin Mbewe of YWAM in Marromeu, herself a physics teacher have developed the 'Classroom in a Box' project.




The airstrip right in the middle of Marromeu

The project aims to provide literary resources and training materials to to the people in the delta in their own language and last week we flew a team up to Marromeu to start the process. The first 10 weeks of the Classroom in a Box is based on a chronological childrens Bible and the curriculem covers four learning areas, Bible, Language, Numeracy and Life Skills. It starts with the basic skills needed to master the learning areas.
Anne sorting out the box contents after our arrival

Mercy Air has been working with YWAM in Marromeu for a number of years now using both fixed wing aircraft and the helicopter. The town is the last sizable place on the Zambezi before it empties into the Indian Ocean 40 miles downstream.

The Russians, or at least some of their military hardware, were here during the war, although it seems they had some difficulty in leaving.
This Antonov 32 finished its days after a crash in 1992. (The 210 in front is ours and is working just fine).
There are a number of artillery units around. This T34 tank is in the garden of some YWAM workers but at least it saves having to build a climbing frame or swing - if you can handle its gun barrel being permanently pointed at your house.
Anyway, back to business. The idea is to teach local teachers how to use the box and so Anne, Sally and Samantha bought one up and shared its contents with some teachers and spent time some time getting feedback on how they thought the methods would work.
We will send another team up with the helicopter next time it goes there and they will be able to take it into the really remote areas in the delta. Once this is established the idea is to then extend the project into other areas in Mozambique where we already have existing relations with missionaries.

You can read more about the project at:
http://www.mercyair.org/en/projects/operational-reports/218-education-project-advances.html

Mercy Air team

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