Day 31 – Special Educational Needs at KCC
This week, we were thrilled to be assigned to SEN every day. This was a dream come true and the first time that we’d had the chance since we’d arrived.
When we walked in the door, we were delighted to see Salim doing spelling exercises along with Juma. We hadn’t expected to see him there and we had wondered where he had gotten to after finishing with the builders.
James worked with Salim and Juma,
Kathryn worked with Moses
and Jamie struggled to get Jabel to use the magnet board.
Once everyone had finished with their English exercises, Dan set up Kathryn’s Maths Bowling game. As usual, it was a bit of a struggle to get Jabel to play by the rules but overall it seems like the boys understand the game and can identify all of the skittles and place them in the right order.
We are very excited that they as well as Dan enjoy the game, especially since they seem to be showing signs of improving with numbers and learning from it.
This game is most difficult for Ema since he doesn’t understand the concept of reading out the words before writing them down, he also has trouble determining where to put the words on his bingo sheet. Moses is also challenged by the game but he seems to have a better grasp of it.
Both Salim and Juma are probably too advanced for the game but neither of them seem to have grasped the concept of fair play as they both try to cheat when we play go fish. A game with a definite winner but also a chance to try again is good for them.
After we finished playing Bingo, we had recess. We had a penalty shootout and Ema won, it seems that Ema has a special skill that lets him win even though he often isn’t sure about what is going on.
After the break the boys all had some biscuits before we got into finger painting. The boys were meant to be painting on paper but it wasn’t long before the game descended to face painting. By the end of the day Juma had a monobrow, Salim was in “white face”, Moses had spontaneously developed a full beard and Ema was just plain covered in paint.
Day 32- Special Educational Needs at KCC
Today when we arrived at SEN, the morning maths lesson was in full swing. We partnered up and set to helping the boys with their work. We know how much the boys love their art and music so we thought we’d combine the two and have everyone make a musical instrument. Kathryn found a quick and easy Kazoo recipe on Pinterest for that exact purpose.
We had been saving up empty toilet rolls for at least a week and had collected all of Mekenzie’s left over art supplies when she left so that we could use them to make our Kazoos.
It’s great fun and very easy to make a Kazoo at home, just follow these simple steps.
- Cardboard toilet paper roll
- Paper squares
- Rubber band
- Art supplies (optional)
- First, cut a few holes into the top of the toilet roll.
- Next, secure a square of paper to one end of the toilet roll using a rubber band.
- This it cuts off any airflow through the roll and directs it through the holes.
- Decorate using art supplies! (Optional)
- Wait for any wet areas to dry.
As usual, when we were decorating out kazoos more paint got onto our hands and faces than actually went onto the instrument. Once our Kazoos were dry, we showed the boys how to play them and began to bring out some other instruments for free music time.
Once the jam session was in full swing, everyone picked up something to tie around their waist so that they could dance.
They all love dancing and have such good moves, as soon as the music begins you can tell they are waiting for Dan to let them get up and dance.
Day 33 – Special Educational Needs at KCC
Kathryn being the Pinterest maniac that she is had found yet another fun education game to play. This one is called Make 10.
It’s a card game that is exactly what it sounds like. First, the Jokers and face cards are removed from the deck and the deck is shuffled. Each player is dealt a set of 5 cards. Using the numbers on the cards and any maths that they can think of, each player tries to make an equation whose final sum is equal to ten. Each card may only be used once per equation and the person who finds the most ways to make 10 is the winner of the round.
Juma loved Make 10 while Salim had trouble understanding the concept of each equation has to equal 10. We’re not sure what Moses or Ema thought of it but we have a feeling that it might have been a bit complex for them.
After Make 10, the boys had a life skills lesson where they took turns in washing various dishes. Juma tried to hide to get out of the work which Dan found hilarious and made him do the washing, Ema was on rinsing and Moses and Salim were on drying.
While they were working Dan told us that the money Salim is earning from his work experience is going into an account and at the end of the year Dan, Salim and his parents will withdraw the money and use it to buy something practical like a cow or a bike. We were very impressed with how Soft Power is helping in this regard.
Next was recess and we had a game of soccer.
Since Juma doesn’t like playing soccer, he decided to go hide in a nearby hole that had been dug by the East African Playground volunteers renovating KCC.
After recess it was art time. I think that Dan had become a bit sick of everyone getting covered in paint since today we were using stamps which we coloured in with texta.
Kathryn and James got a bit carried away with their stamping and produced some wonderful artwork.
Day 34 – James at Police Station
We woke up this morning planning to help Fred again with the tree planting, only to discover that two of the rooms had been broken into overnight and a large amount of property had been stolen from some of the Italians including Bianca’s DSLR camera, Viviana’s and Luigi’s malaria medicine and Jandira’s entire suitcase.
The girls spent the morning making a list of everything that had been taken so they could get a police report. We were amazed at how well they were dealing with the break in. We had a bit of an issue with how our Ugandan friends reacted to the situation but for our own peace of mind we decided to put it down to a cultural difference.
Luckily, everyone had travel insurance so as long as a police report was made they would be able to replace everything except the photos from the camera. Seems simple right? It turns out that a 3 way language barrier makes a police report very difficult to obtain.
Before heading to the police office, it was decided that James would come along with the Italians and Mama Flo. The rationale being that since neither the Italians, nor the Ugandans could speak English perfectly, James would be able to sort out any language barriers that arose.
We piled into a car and headed to the local police precinct which turned out to be little more than a ramshackle hut. When we arrived, there were 5 police in the hut talking in Lugandan. After Flo briefly explained what was going on, we were told to sit down. Once we had sat down, everyone including Flo proceeded to continue talking in Lugandan while all of the non-locals sat in total confusion. After about 5 minutes, James spoke up asking: “What’s going on here?”
It turns out that 3 of the people in the hut were not police officers but were here to see the police about a separate matter. James was amused when the officers told him that they had to wait their turn since there had been no communication about waiting or the identity of anyone else in the room. We had effectively been eavesdropping on a separate case for 5 minutes, it was especially funny since James had assumed that all 5 people were police since they were all dressed in the same uniform (no uniform).
It wasn’t long after that the 3 men left, all looking rather displeased at the outcome of their conversations. James decided not to interpret this as a bad sign of things to come.
The police asked what we were here for and James told them about what had happened and mentioned that each person needed a separate police report including a list of their belongings that had been stolen.
The police immediately asked why we had been staying at Mama Flo’s. James was confused. It wasn’t clear as to how that information would help any kind of investigation into catching the thieves or help in any way to complete the police report. James spoke up again and reminded the police that all anyone wanted was to get a police report for the girls’ insurance and to hopefully even get the items back. The police ignored him and continued to grill Flo about why we were staying there.
After about half an hour, they finally moved on and made up the police reports. The whole process ended up taking about 2.5 hours, about half of which James deemed to be wasted time. We returned to Flo’s with the police who came to inspect the scene of the crime. After they were done they informed the girls that they could pay 100,000UGX (total) for all of the reports which they could then take to the Ugandan Revenue Authority which would give reimburse them for the total estimated value (in shillings) of the stolen goods. Everyone thought that it sounded very fishy so James called Caitlin and asked her opinion. Caitlin asked Aggrey to take the Italians to the police station the next day where they would collect the reports for no charge so that they could give them to their insurance providers instead of the URA.
There was nothing else that we could do to further the investigation so everyone decided that a day off from volunteering was deserved and we headed to River camp where we found Maisie, Jamie and Kathryn.
Day 35 – Special Educational Needs at KCC
After such an exciting day yesterday, SEN seemed like a serious relax effort. True to form, Kathryn had come up with another education fun game for the boys to play. It is kind of word match where half of a word is written on one bit of paper and the other half on another. Each boy is given a suffix letter pair with a list of the words they need to make. They then use the list to find the other part of the word. Once they have finished the list they get another list with a different suffix.
For example: one paper might have the letters “LL”, the boys would then have to locate other letter pairs that when combined with “LL” would make a word. Possible solutions include “BA”, “TA”, “CA”, “FA” and the list goes on.
Kathryn was helping Ema and was thrilled that he could look at the word and most of the time find the corresponding paper from the middle. Ema usually struggles when he is asked to read/spell/write words down and so this was a huge success!
Once we had gone through the lists we decided to see if they had been paying attention and get them to spell words from a set of letters. Juma did brilliantly and understood that the words were grouped by similar sounds the others did not grasp this concept but still did well.
Soon, the boys were mentally exhausted and ready for recess. Once again we played soccer for about 15 minutes before returning to the classroom where the boys got their biscuits.
After the snack we had art. Dan asked if we had any more suggests for art and Kathryn could only think about making “Butterfly paintings”. Where everyone had to paint a picture on half of the page and once they were finished, fold it over to make a mirror image. Needless to say, there were quite a few butterflies.
The funniest part about the creative expression lessons like art is watching the boys discover that there isn’t a “right answer”. They’ll try to copy you for a few minutes but when they make a mistake and no one corrects them, they’ll begin to realise that they’re allowed to do their own thing.
After SEN we headed into Jinja where we took the Italians to the Green Shop, the op shop on Main Street. Jandira in particular were shopping for easy replacements to the things that had been stolen.
We spent the good part of the afternoon going through the Green shop. Jandira basically repopulated her entire wardrobe and Maisie did a good job of trying to beat her. Kathryn, true to form made a couple of good finds and James found a great ladies Hawaiian shirt. The best part was that no item in the shop cost more than 1000UGX (40 cents).