Teaching at the school, helping at the orphanage and another thunderstorm

I woke up just before the wake up call at 6.30am. It was misty outside, only the second day it had been like that since we arrived. Luckily it meant it wasn’t too hot for the ellies when we mucked them out. When we had finished there I came back and had a quick shower, because you usually smell quite bad. There is even a dedicated draw for elephant gloves to try and stop your hands getting too dirty. Then I had a large breakfast, even eating an apple, because mucking out is quite hard work. We then had to prepare for teaching. Only half of us were doing this, whilst the others prepared the orphanage for building work. We left around 10.30am to get to the school for 11. Our group started teaching Grade 4 (10-11 year olds) at 11.30am. We didn’t have one of our group because he’d gone to help someone else teach a maths class.

Zulu children at school. Image from: suerego.com

There were around 40 pupils and we soon found they had only done one term of English. So we ended up making them each write a letter of the alphabet in capitals and lower case, and then write a word beginning with that letter and draw it. I had fun, but it was pretty hard at first to get across what we wanted them to do.

The next class we taught were Grade 6 who understood us much better, and we gave them scones. We played hangman with them and also helped them with the Social Science skills work. We asked them what they wanted to be when they were older and most said pilot, engineer, teacher, doctor and even president! When we did hangman one of them did ‘Ben Clock’, which we realised was ‘Big Ben’ so they did know a bit about England. Yet when we asked them what they knew about England they were silent. Perhaps they were shy or just told not to call out in class.

At around 2.30pm we got bored so went to the orphanage. It was just across the road, and we managed to get some sandwiches for lunch. I had cheese and lettuce, and tuna. We had to shut ourselves into the Quantum because the children hadn’t eaten yet. I hadn’t realised it was that late as I had munched on food so much during the morning.

Volunteer with child at the orphanage in the shelter. Image from: yearoutgroup.org

After eating we played with the orphans, they then sat in the shelter, prayed and we handed them food from the outdoor kitchen around the back of the orphanage. Then after the building materials had been delivered by John, I headed back with two others, plus the horsey girls. Two of the girls had sat in the back of the pick up to and from getting the building materials and said it had been a bit scary when they had gone fast!

African thunderstorm near Coffee Bay. Copywright Jon Hicks/Corbis. Image from: bingfotos.blogspot.co.uk

When we got back I chilled and wrote my diary until the others got back. I ate a leftover scone with some marmalade we had found in the fridge. The others got back after a while and the guys decided to play volleyball before a lovely dinner of spaghetti bolognese. Then another wonderful African thunderstorm started and Mark, the head ranger, turned off the power. We had thought when the power went off it was power cuts, but apparently it’s to stop any major damage happening from lightning striking the power cables. However, we had to wait to turn off the power because the guests at Manyatta were still eating. We had candles to sit by. One of the guys went to get trousers at around 8.30 and never came back because he had fallen asleep. I headed to bed at 9.20, read for a while and then slept. I woke up at 5am because the power came back on, which turned the air con on in our room. I shouldn’t complain though because our room was the only one with it in!

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