Nothing beats teamwork, except perhaps, better teamwork. The PA-MOJA team exemplified the truth in this assertion when it mobilized thousands of its members and supporters to vote in the recently ended CST competition in which the grand prize was $50,000 CAD.
This picture captures a special moment that surpasses geographical and social boundaries, proving that; in the much hyped metaphorical global village, there must be a global school with global teachers and equally global learners.
From the background, looking on as the award is presented are the Tigithi boys who had traveled all the way to Loise girls Nanyuki for the Skype call to take part in the event.The image puts the Kenyan students from Nanyuki in the same classroom with their Canadian colleagues in virtually every sense of the word. In fact, if it had been a normal school day, any of their teachers could have taught both classes.
In attendance were a number of guests who had come to witnesses the event and of course the CST staff represented by Martha Turner, the Vice-President of Marketing. Also present for the event were Suzanne Hoffman, Langley Superintendent of Schools, Claire Guy, Langley Assistant Superintendent of Schools, Jon Bonnar, Principal, Langley Fine Arts School, Ken Cober, Principal, Heritage Woods Secondary, Ken Hoff, Langley School District Communications Manager and Susan Cairns, Executive Director, Langley School District Foundation.
The two schools from Kenya and Canada had a great time having discussions and asking each other questions about their different cultures, education and simple details of day to day life. While many of these may sound mundane coming from one’s immediate neighbors, the differences in their respective environments turned even the simplest of queries into fodder for highly edifying discussions.
Each side displayed its musical talent. Joy from Loise girls held the transatlantic classroom captive as she sang to her colleagues. MacBooks and desktops were abandoned for a few minutes as people rushed to the Skype screen to watch and afterwards, their applause reverberated across the continents.
Not to be outdone, Juliana Loughlin went on to cast a musical spell as she keyed away on her piano with an incredible dexterity only rivaled by her perfect singing voice. To many of the Kenyan students, where music lessons have been all but abandoned, the fact that she could play the piano so well and sing was a real treat indeed. The Canadian students sang their national anthem and the Loise Tigithi group also did the Kenyan one (in Swahili) to the delight of their “classmates”.
The event climaxed a few minutes past 5:00 pm Kenyan time (8:00 am Canadian time) when Martha Tuner (CST Marketing Manager) presented the jubilant victors with the check and soon afterwards it came to a close but not without renewed promises and optimism for a continued relationship.