The children in FS1 had an extra fun time in their Kiswahili lesson this week with a trip to the local fruit and veg stall. As part of their learning on the book 'Handa's Surprise', they wanted to buy fruit and practise their shopping Kiswahili at the same time.
Wrapped up warm in their raincoats and boots, the rainy season weather didn't deter them as they set out with their shopping list.
Asking for ndizi, tikiti maji, chungwa, nanasi, and embe, the children were looking forward already to the next step - making fruit kebabs!
A word from our Swahili teacher, Miss Sekemi: "This is the first year that Kiswahili has been taught in FS1 and it has been very successful. The children have learned through singing and playing games and can often be heard using the Swahili they have learned. Even their English speaking teachers have learned a lot from the children too. Kweli poa sana!"
With a matter of weeks before they take on their challenges, the Year 9 and 10 students took on a very soggy training hike in preparation for their climbs of Mount Meru and Mount Kilimanjaro at the end of May. Here's what one of our hikers thought:
"The Meru hiking trip was a different experience - not what I thought that it would be. We, the Year 9 and 10 students, started off with high hopes and clean legs, only for it to start raining and not stop! We hiked through a beautiful forest to reach a freezing cold river where we stopped for lunch. The purpose of this hike was to prepare our bodies (and minds) for walking all day. On the way down we were colder, muddier and a lot quieter. As we reached the bottom, a smile crept over everyone’s face. An enjoyable, painful hike had come to an end." - Niamh Baker
We asked a few more of the hikers for their opinions.
"The walk was quite challenging but it helped us to prepare for what is to come."
"The hike was a good bonding experience. It was exhausting and involved many risks but we had fun."
"The walk was cold and challenging but fun at the same time. It was a good experience and helped us prepare for the climb in an exciting way."
The rains have officially come in Arusha, but that doesn't stop our youngest children getting outside and enjoying the experience!
The benefits of outdoor play are discussed on a daily basis, and all children should be able to experience these every day, rain or shine. Some of the benefits of enjoying the outdoors in all weathers include:
- The sensory experience of listening to and feeling different weather conditions such as the wind, rain, and snow.
- Discovering about seasons and the changes that happen in the environment such as crunchy leaves falling off the trees
- Holistic development
- Learning to manage the new risks that come with different weathers such as drinking lots of water and sun cream when it’s hot, or being careful not to slip when it is wet
- Discovering about living things in the environment when the weather changes for example frogs may come out when it rains
- New EYFS learning experiences such as painting with wet mud when it’s raining or catching rain in containers and talking about quantities and numbers
- Plus many fun activities such as den building to keep dry or to provide shelter from the sun, splashing in puddles, crunching leaves, minibeast hunting and much more.
Children should have all the opportunities possible to discover more about the world they live in. Play should not be restricted, or development hindered because it is raining outside. If children have the correct clothing, they are rarely phased by the weather, and this should be embraced.
While the rainy season is upon us, the EYFS team would encourage parents to send their children to school 'dressed for the weather':
- Waterproofs – jacket, coat or suit
- A warm fleece
- Wellie boots
- Change of clothes
Playing outside can be turned into beneficial learning experiences with some fond memories. Children and teachers soon warm up once back inside, and it can be made a special part of the daily routine. It doesn’t have to dampen spirits, and the children will always gain from times like these.
Next time it’s cold and rainy make the most of the weather, get everyone wrapped up and go and enjoy outdoor play in the rain.