World Book Day was BIG at BISA!

World Book Day is a big event for educators across the world, and BISA loves to get in on the action!

It was a school-wide reading and literature extravaganza with everyone from pre-creche to Year 13 getting involved. Enjoy our articles below and find out what we got up to while we celebrated our favourite books, authors and genres.

Pre-Creche to Year 2: Fairytale Fun at Braeburn Infant School

Children from Braeburn Infant School and our Kisongo campus collaborated at the Infant School for a fun-filled, fairytale feast! Beginning their day with our traditional World Book Day Breakfast, we admired the inventive costumes and characters that filled the playground. Our home learning project had been a family collaboration in making a castle, and everyone rose to the occasion. Everywhere we looked, there were creative castles made from recycled materials, all lovingly crafted by our families! 

Pre-Creche, Creche and FS1 spent their day focusing on one of their favourite traditional tales - The Three Little Pigs! They watched a puppet show of the story, helping to huff and puff and blow the houses down, cheering for the little pigs and booing the big bad wolf!

Afterwards they took part in all kinds of fun activties relating to the story including making little pig cupcakes, wolf puppets and testing out the different types of houses using a 'wolf-shaped hairdryer'. The children could all tell the story off by heart and thoroughly enjoyed their day! 

FS2, Year 1 and Year 2 also had a brilliant day fostering a really love for traditional tales. They spent the day turning straw into gold for a greedy king, designing bridges for billy goats, baking ginger bread man, creating our own traditional settings and story mapping on balloons!

A special thank you to all the parents for joining us on the day and really getting into the spirit of things with the costumes and family collaboration on the castle project!
Year 3 to 13: A Mixed Bag of Book-Related Goodies in Kisongo!
At our Kisongo Campus, Year 3, 4 and 5 started their day with coffee, cakes and characters, giving everyone a chance to admire the creative costumes of our Primary students. With costumes ranging from Hermione Granger to a bookworm, the Primary students showed their love of literature through their outfit choices. Classroom activities and rotations centred around a range of different books including Mwenye Hadithi's animal tales, fables, French comic books and sporty stories. Well done to everyone for all the effort they put in!
Meanwhile, for Year 6 to 13, the theme was the Victorian era (1837- 1901). 
The morning kicked off with a character parade at the amphitheatre where the clear winner was Jasmine Chadha who came very cleverly dressed as a portrait of Queen Victoria. The Secondary audience was thrilled with her outfit and whooped and applauded wildly. Charis Pulei was also greeted enthusiastically with her suffragette costume tthat looked like it had been lifted straight out of Victorian England.
Not to be left out, our headteacher, Mrs. Rogers dressed as a chimney sweep and gave a detailed account of what it was like to be a chimney sweep at that time.
 The students took part in a variety of different activities over the morning including looking at the Colonisation of Africa, key events such as the abolition of slavery (1834- which was just before the Victorian era) and the building of the Mombasa- Ugandan railway line; Victorian Inventions; Victorian Fashion and Entertainment; The Jack The Ripper Trials and Victorian Melodrama.
The year 10s and 11s looked at a book called the Description of the Correct Method of Waltzing by Thomas Wilson. Many fictional books (especially romantic fiction) based on the victorian era, usually describe one or two characters waltzing. We thought it would be fun to learn how to waltz ourselves. 
Miss Lulu and Frank from Ibuka dance, were the Victorian Waltz dance instructors. They gave each group session a different dance routine to learn and perfect in an hour and fifteen minutes. They split the groups into couples and taught them the 3-step, 8-step dance and poses. They were also taught how to enter into a ball room, and the mannerism expected during a dance. 
A particular highlight was the Sherlock Holmes and Forensic Science activity. Our year 6 and 7 students can confidently claim to be super detectives. Their challenge on World Book Day was to travel back in time to Victorian London and be a member of the 'Baker Street Boys' - a group of children street children that Sherlock Holmes would rely upon to help him solve crimes. Armed with their equipment, they analysed a murder crime scene. They donned their gloves, so that they did not leave any extra finger prints or disturb any evidence, measured distances, found footprints and fingerprints. Magnifying glasses were a great hit. It was not all fun and games, they recorded evidence but more importantly, they drew conclusions. To challenge themselves further, they had to decide what happens next, looking at forensic investigation.
As a collective, they challenged each other on whether their conclusions were realistic.
What a wonderful World Book Day! Enjoy our video slideshow of all our incredible costumes and activities!

'An Inspector Calls' draws acclaim from the press!

Still riding high on the overwhelming success of BISA's touring production of 'An Inspector Calls', we were further delighted to see a fantastic review of the production featured in 'The Citizen'.

Describing it as 'riveting' and 'a theatrical masterpiece', the article draw attention to multiple performances, including Andrew Ogonji's masterful portrayal of the foolish Mr Limo, describing him as an audience favourite.

The article additionally comments on the professionalism of the production and the way in which the students portrayed complicated themes and messages with skill.

Congratulations again to the whole cast.

The full article can be found here:

'An Inspector Calls' stuns audiences in Nairobi, Dar and Arusha!

“We don't live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other. And I tell you that the time will soon come when if men will not learn that lesson, then they will be taught it in fire and blood and anguish.”

Performing Arts at BISA has continually raised their game with the complexity and challenge of the pieces they take on. This year was no different as they performed JB Priestley's 'An Inspector Calls'. Lifting it from 1930s London to 1990s Arusha, the adaptation brought the play alive for the audience.

The tale of the Lyimo family, and their involvement in the events that led to the tragic death of a young woman, kept the audience engaged and enthralled for the entire performance. Stunning dance performances and physical theatre showed the skill that the cast had developed over the course of this production. The addition of the incredible set that symbolically crumbled as their lives began to crumble, was an ingenious piece of technical work from the A-Level Physics students. 

The cast tackled some of the most adult and challenging themes in the course of the performance and are to be commended for their maturity and commitment to presenting this story of class struggles, how power and status can corrupt, and how our actions can have lasting and devastating effects.

Here are some words from the lead cast:

‘It was a very good experience, I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of something so great.’ –Layla Chege, Year 13, Sheila

‘Seeing as this was my first play I liked that I got to play such a powerful character. I feel inspired to do more and excited to continue this journey.’ – Josephine Kiaga, Year 13, Sybil

‘Surprising, I’ve been in plays in the past but this was more real, it was a first experience for me.’ Cianna Walsh, Year 12, Edna

‘It was exhausting but the outcome was worth it.’ – Joshua Sekgapane, Year 12, Gerald

A massive congratulations goes to the entire cast and crew of 'An Inspector Calls'!

Getting ready for another fantastic Secondary production!

The process of putting on a play is huge. There is the set to think of, lighting, costumes, sound. There is choreography, learning lines, exploring your character. Since September we have been working on all these aspects of the play and now, less than a week away from our performance in Arusha, we are ironing out the last little bits to make this show as professional and inspiring as ever. As part of out BTEC Performing Arts course we have spent a great deal of time investigating the text, discussing how to make it relevant to an African audience, and really exploring the breadth and depth of our characters in order to bring them to life onstage.

Here is a short clip from rehearsals as our lead actors developed their characters.