First Day of Workshops in Leguruki, Tanzania, 2012

Monday, July 16th


Our first day of workshops at Shiston Secondary School in Leguruki Ward in Tanzania passed in a flurry of smiling faces, discussion and plans for the week. My star moments were when I was able to reconnect with teachers that I had met last year. Teachers were from the five secondary schools in the ward: Shiston, Leguruki, Maruvango, Mirini and Nkoasenga. The morning started with questions that would guide the discussions for our week. Groups were assigned a starting place then rotated through the questions agreeing with previous answers and adding new information. Groups returned to their original question and chose the top three answers. The questions and answers are as follows.


#1. What is something you are proud of in your teaching?

  • Obtaining teaching objectives
  • To be a source of positive change
  • Life long learning

#2. What are the challenges that you face in your school or classroom?

  • Truancy
  • Language barrier (English is the language of instruction but it is a third language)
  • Having a large number of students

#3. Define student success.

  • The ability of students to acquire knowledge, skills and pass exams
  • To be proud of what has been learned
  • To realize they are learning slow and get assistance

#4. What are some key components of a lesson?

  • Positive response by answering some questions
  • Classroom management
  • Students fully engaged

#5. What are the qualities of a good school?

  • Schools with facilities like laboratories, library and enough classrooms
  • Be friendly to the learner
  • Good administration

#6. What are the qualities of a good teacher?

  • They are qualified
  • Must be learner-centered
  • Must use organization, planning and be able to manage the teaching and learning process

#7. How do you evaluate your students?

  • Question and answer method
  • Oral questions
  • Test and exams

#8. What are the challenges that your students face that impact their learning?

  • Lack of teaching and learning materials
  • Language barrier (Students are taught in Kiswahili in grades 1-7 then switch to English for the remainder of secondary school)
  • Economic problems in their families


What I found most interesting about the questions and answers is that teachers everywhere face some of the same difficulties. We all try to find ways to support our students and make changes in our classrooms to positively influence the learning outcome of the students we work with. In our workshops we strive to share ideas and find ways to overcome the difficulties that teachers face. Our week will continue with two days of collaborative workshops and two days of inquiry workshops.


After wrapping up our workshop day we drove to nearby Mbaseeny Primary School were we are staying. The accommodations are basic but comfortable. We are sharing a room outfitted with safari cots, mattresses, sleeping bags and mosquito nets. We have a common area for meetings and meals. The day was beautiful and the view of Mount Killamanjaro was spectacular. We took full advantage of our free time to read, relax and practice yoga. At our evening debrief we discussed the many stars, great moments, and wishes from the day.


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Comment by Emmanuel Loi Mollel on August 14, 2012 at 13:45

Comment by Emmanuel Loi Mollel on August 14, 2012 at 13:44

I appreciate the the workshop

Comment by Emmanuel Loi Mollel on August 14, 2012 at 13:44
I appreciate the the workshop


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