Community Change Work begins At Hambledon

Pupils in Year 2 and Year 3 are looking at how the communities of Hambledon and Rihamu change and develop over time. One threat that exists in both communities is the risk of flooding.

Rain water has caused much damage in Hambledon & Rihamu. Mr Davies launched the topic at Rihamu Junior when he visited last summer as part of the British Council ‘Connecting Classrooms’ project. He launched the same topic in Kingfishers Class, Hambledon last week. The children began by comparing photographs of the two localities and considering what these told them about the communities. In coming weeks they will be considering the impact of the flooding, before Madam Shakila finishes the topic as part of her visit in March.

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Sanitation Studies

Today, Year 6 at Liss Junior School started the sanitation study unit at school. Firstly, we discussed what sanitation means and came up with the following definition,

‘The systems for taking dirty water and other waste products away from buildings in order to protect people’s health’

We also learned what the acronym WASH means: water, sanitation and hygiene .

Next , we thought about how we take our access to water for granted and talked about a scenario:

As people living in the UK, we have access to safe drinking water. It’s a part of our everyday lives. Running water allows us to shower in the morning, water the lawn in the afternoon, cook dinner in the evening, and keep hydrated throughout the day. Imagine now, if you can, that there is no running water. What would you do? What if you had to fetch water every morning, walking five kilometres each way, and waiting in line at the pump for half an hour? How would this change your lives?

The children had a few minutes to think about this and put their thoughts down on post – its. The photo below shows some of their responses

The children’s responses to the scenario.

The children were able to identify that life would become far more difficult and that their free time would be severely diminished. Mr Stanley told the class about his experiences of fetching water from the crater lake at Kafuro and how tiring it is particularly at the high altitude. The children realised that the work they had put in over the last few years to enable Kafuro to have clean toilets and running water has made a huge difference.

The second part of the session looked at the differences between girls and boys when it comes to sanitation. The poster below shows how poor sanitation affects girls far more severely than boys.

The children were tasked with coming up with a plan to address this. We will share our plans with Mr Thembo when he comes to the UK (hopefully) in March.

Next week, the children are going to learn how to build tippy taps.

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Changing Communities: Building starts in Liss

Blog readers will know that one of the major topics that Liss, Kafuro, Hambledon and Rihamu have been studying is how our communities are changing and what the impact will be on the people and services in each community.

This week in Liss, the first phase of building new houses has started on Andlers Ash Road, which is a five minute walk away from the school. The houses will be built on the site of a former tree nursery. Seventy-seven new houses are being built in the first phase and this should have some impact on the village. As well as welcoming new people into our community, it should mean that there will be new arrivals at the school as new children join when they move into the area. There should also be a greater demand on local services and an opportunity for local businesses to generate more income.

We will post new photos each week as the building work progresses.

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Christmas greetings from Liss Junior School

Merry Christmas to all our friends at Kafuro Primary School and to all the twinned schools in the UK and Uganda. At Liss, we had our carol service yesterday where we read the story of the nativity and sang Christmas carols. We send to all of our friends our best wishes and the message of hope given through the birth of Jesus Christ.

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Media Coverage

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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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Raffles for Rihamu

The children at Hambledon Primary are working hard to help our friends at Rihamu. They want to help renovate the P1 block, replacing the wooden slats with permanent brick walls that will provide much better protection from the elements.

The school council have come up with the idea of ‘Raffles for Rihamu’. Raffles will take place weekly and will start in November with cakes as the first set of prizes.  A big thank you to all of our parents who have said that they will donate cakes to this project.

The children are excited that Madam Shakila is coming to visit Hambledon in March 2020 and are looking forward to revealing the outcomes of their fundraising.

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We are so happy and delighted for the contribution from Hambledon Primary School for the 5000 water tank.

Before this, it was a big struggle to meet all our school water requirements, from the water we use to cook, drink and for general use. We had a connection to national water line but this was most of the times off due to our inability to pay the monthly bills. Now we are able to meet all our water needs and the children now do not need to travel long distances to collect water. We are grateful that this has improved the general school sanitation.

Thank you so much Mr. Paul and team about this great contribution.

The newly installed school water tank

Shakilah – Head Teacher Rihamu Junior Sch

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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)

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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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