Sheringham teachers head off to Ghana on classroom ‘twinning’ trip

Teachers Kerrie Turner and Anne Stokes, who will be heading out to Ghana as part of a British Counci

Teachers Kerrie Turner and Anne Stokes, who will be heading out to Ghana as part of a British Council scheme aimed at pairing up UK schools with partners across the world. Picture: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

Two north Norfolk primary school teachers will be jetting off to Ghana this week, to kickstart a partnership that will see pupils and staff work on a joint project aimed at fostering creativity, critical thinking and collaboration.

Anne Stokes, who develops training programmes for schools all over the county as head of teaching school at Sheringham Primary, and Year 1 teacher Kerrie Turner will be spending ten days at a 1300-pupil inner-city west African school as part of Connecting Classrooms, a global education programme run by the British Council in partnership with the Department for International Development.

Mrs Stokes and Miss Turner, who will be taking along pens, maths resources and PE equipment donated by pupils and parents, will be travelling with 10 fellow teachers from five Norfolk primary schools, with each UK pair assigned a different school in the Ghanaian city of Kumasi.

They will be working with Ghanaian staff and pupils on a project looking at the causes and possible solutions to hunger across the world and

plan to share learning techniques introduced as part of Sheringham Primary's school development plan with their Ghanaian counterparts,

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These include a guided reading programme and a collaborative learning scheme, whereby pupils work together on problem solving tasks.

'We will also be taking letters written by our children and a video filmed around the school and hope to bring back the same thing from Ghana,' Miss Turner said. 'It is about gaining a cultural understanding and, for the children in particular, it will be hugely beneficial to gain a bit of worldly knowledge and see the similarities between the two schools.'

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Miss Turner, who spent six weeks working in Kenyan schools and orphanages as a student, hopes the partnership will become part of the curriculum for Sheringham youngsters.

'The plan is for it to be a sustainable project,' she explained. 'What we don't want to do is to just take along some resources; we want to be able to give the teachers there techniques that they can use in school and, rather than just sitting in placidly in the classroom, we want to encourage children to chat and debate and take ownership of their learning.'

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