Pizza sale with Liss tomatoes

On Friday, Rowan Class pupils at Liss held a pizza sale using many of the tomatoes tthat last year’s Rowan Class had grown in the bottle greenhouse. Mr Stanley cooked down the tomatoes and added onion before blitzing it into a sauce. He then made a pizza dough and cooked pizzas in the cob oven. The children quickly sold out of the pizzas on the layground but not before raising £30 (150,000UGX) towards completing the new classroom at Kafuro.

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Discussing dilemmas for UK and Uganda

Last week, Year 6 pupils in Liss had their last lesson where we looked at rights and responsibilities. Firstly, we looked at the role of rights bearers, the people who make sure that rights are enforced. For example, if a child has the right to a tidy classroom, but a responsibility to ensure that they keep it tidy, then the rights bearer has to ensure that a classroom is provided in the first place,

After this we discussed dilemmas that may make us think carefully about rights. The children were asked to discuss one of two dilemmas:

Have the government the right to impose a ban on junk food for all school dinners in the UK?

Should parents be able to take children out of school to support their parents in the field at harvest time in Uganda?

Both questions generated some fierce debate. The children had to choose one of the two questions to answer while working as a pair. Here are a couple of their answers:

Holly and Leila

Junk food in schools shouldn’t be banned as if it was banne dthen our rights are being denied. If we eat too much junk food then that’s our fault and we would have to deal with the consequences. If junk food was banned then the children/adults who are sensible eaters wouldn’t be able to have a break once in a while from healthy choices. It isn’t ok to eat loads of junk food, but it still shouldn’t be tajken away from us. We should be able to make our own choices and if our choice is to eat lots of junk food then that’s our own fault.

On the other hand, junk food should be banned as too many people are overweight at a young age. If we can’t control our diet then we should get as much help as we can. Other places can supply a treat for those who eat well, so it’s good for everyone. If there was too much unhealthy food on menus, people would most likely choose it over healthy options. Some people eat a lot of junk food outside of school so why not ban it inside school so we can convince them to be healthy.

We don’t think junk food should be banned as that would deny our rights to eat freely without being told what to eat. We should be able to control and convince ourselves to eat healthily, and if we can’t we deserve the consequences of being overweight. If unhelathy food was banned, it’s likely less people would get school dinners as it wouldn’t be something to look forward to, like a treat for healthy eaters. It’s our responsibility to stay healthy and we should only treat ourselves once in a while.

Levi and Isaac

We think that children should be banned from working in the fiels as it will ruin the education of most children in Kafuro. If they don’t go to school then they will most likely not pass their end of year exams. Therefore the only job they will ever have will be in the fields.

On the other hand, we think that children shouldn’t be banned from helping their parents because if the school was worried about children working in the field s during harvest then they should just change the term dates and that problem would be solved.

In conclusion, the right of any child in Kafuro is to have a good education, but they have a responsibility to access it.

We asked Yowasi whether it was possible for Ugandan schools to change ter dates to fit in with harvests. Yowasi told us that schools do not have the power to do this and the Ministry of Education in Uganda sets the term dates. He added that the start of the rainy season has been so inconsistent in recent years that even if the dates changed there would be no guarantee that they would get them right.

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UK teachers hold cluster meeting

On Thursday, UK teachers met at Liss Junior School for the first time this year. The main throust of the meeting was to get a full report on Miss Duncan and Mr Davies’ trip to Uganda during the summer as well as hearing the latest news on the process to get Stephen and Shakilah, the headteachers of Kafuro Primary School and Rihamu Junior School, over to the UK by the beginning of March. There was also an opportunity for schools to share what they have been doing as well as outlining expectations for the year.

UK teachers meeting at Liss Junior School
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Beginning Wants & Needs work at Liss

Year 6 have begun their work on the wants and needs learning that Miss Duncan and Mr Davies began when they visited Kafuro and Rihamu during the summer.

Our first task was to draw around the outline of a pupil and give the outlined child a name. Next, we discussed what this child would need to grow up into a happy and healthy adult. The children were set the task of identifying twenty things that would help the child achieve this. At this point there was no input and the children could completely decide for themselves.

Once the pupils had completed their twenty things that a child would need, they wrote them on post its and placed them in the middle of the child. Next, they were asked to remove five of the things that the child could do without – this reduced the items to fifiteen. This exercise was repeated twice more and generated fierce debate on each table as the children argued over what should stay. Eventually, each group had five items left which they shared with the rest of the class and compared.

Our next step was to introduce UNICEF wants and needs cards and perform a similar exercise. However, firstly the children were asked to divide the cards into three groups: those they thought were Most Important, Important and Least Important. Then, once again, Mr Stanley asked the pupils to reduce the cards down to just five, and the classroom became very animated as the children had to make some very difficult decisions over what should stay and what should go.

Once the pupils had completed this exercise, they compared the five wants and needs they had left with the post its they had created in the previious lesson. As a class, we then discussed the difference between wants and needs.

Needs: the things that are absolutely necessary for all children to have a happy and healthy life

Wants:the things that are nice to have but not necessary for a full life.

We finished this first session by discussing some key questions: Are wants and needs different for people in the UK and Uganda? Why don’t all children in the world have what they need?

To the first question, the pupils were quite clear that needs would be the same in both countries. However, there was an acknowledgement that wants would be different. For example, a pupil in the UK might want a Playstation or an Xbox, but for a pupil in Uganda, where electricity is scarce in places, a new bike would be something that they might really want.

The pupils were surprisingly not shocked that children in the world didn’t have everything they need. They were quite clear about some of the reasons why this might be the case:

  • War
  • Some countries don’t have enough money to feed people
  • Some governments are corrupt
  • The environment was not conducive to growing food – a result of climate change
  • Lack of water supply – again due to climate change.

There was widespread disbelief in the class that millions of people go hungry in the world when there is more than enough food to feed everyone comfortably.

In our next session the pupils looked at the needs of children are protected. We studied the United Nations Charter for the rights of the Child. In groups, the children looked at the post its they had created during the first session and divided them into wants and needs. For each need they tried to marry it up with one of the articles from the convention

The class then shared their ideas together and were easily able to show how the articles supported the needs they had identified.

Finally, we looked at scenarios in which children’s rights have been abused. The pupils were each given a scenario and tasked with identifying which rights had been violated and suggesting actions to restore these rights.

Some of the scenarios are posted below:

Download (DOCX, 57KB)

Download (DOCX, 96KB)

Download (DOCX, 78KB)

Download (DOCX, 75KB)

Download (DOCX, 84KB)

Download (DOCX, 62KB)

In our next post we will talk about Rights and Responsibilities and how we have used them to create our class charter.

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Preparing the Liss garden for autumn

Warm greetings to all our friends in Uganda. We have just completed the first full week of school back in Liss and some of our staff and pupils have been beginning to prepare the gardening area for autumn. Mr Stanley has been looking after the tomato plants and now the tomatoes are beginning to ripen. Mrs Marfleet has cut back some of the foliage to allow the sun to help ripen the tomatoes.

Two Year 6 pupils, Alfie and Lewis, have been busy clearing the raised beds of weeds. In the spring we will be planting new vegetables to grow.

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