To Be a Teacher

Author Portrait_Simone Jussar, Quality Communications Coordinator
Simone Jussar

Quality Communications Coordinator

Save the Children in Mozambique

February 16, 2018

In the Nacala-a-Velha region of Mozambique, in a community called Locone, lives the little Sara, a 10-year-old student in grade 2, who like many other children in her community dreams to be a teacher.

Save the Children in Mozambique has been working hard to improve the quality of education in rural Mozambique for children like Sara, such as by training teachers and school managers, forming school councils, and promoting and developing new school activities for students like reading fairs and camps.

Sara tells us, “I want to be a teacher to help other children in the community.”

Sara attending a reading camp lesson./center>
Sara attending a reading camp lesson.

In the beginning of the school year, Sara had poor performance and lacked confidence in the classroom. She was ashamed because she couldn’t solve the math exercises, and couldn’t yet read the alphabet easily or participate in the lessons. Her teacher tells us that in collaboration with Save the Children staff, parents like Saras’s father and other community members, the community came together to create reading camps. These camps would host sessions twice a week for struggling learners like Sarah, to offer the extra support they need outside of school – although all children are encouraged to attend.

Community members with some education or good literacy skills, and talents for entertaining and connecting with young children, are selected as reading camp promoters. They are constantly receiving trainings through sponsorship to improve their teaching abilities. The promoters identify children’s individual difficulties and host sessions in the mornings or afternoons, and focus on building numeracy and literacy skills. By ensuring camps provide child-centered educational games, fun, lively lessons, plentiful and interesting books and a supportive environment, children gradually gain confidence and develop a love for learning.

After just one month of attending the lessons at reading camps with the other children, Sara’s school performance began to improve.

She was able to remember so much more, like names of animals, objects and other words in her world.  She also developed a good understanding of numbers, started to understand and solve basic mathematics exercises, and was finally able to read the alphabet without hesitation. At school, she became one of the most outstanding students, always turning in her homework correctly, helping her classmates to do their homework and solve math problems. Her confidence in the classroom had blossomed, and she became a frequent participant in all her classes. Specifically, Portuguese, the national language of Mozambique, became her favorite subject. “We make lessons more fun with some song and dance, in order to ensure that the child is happy and ready to learn, and Sara is improving her skills,” shares Momade, Sara’s reading camps promoter.

Sara participating in a lesson about vowels.
Sara participating in a lesson about vowels.

Sara continues to improve significantly in her school performance and grades. “I remember when she used to just participate in the lessons when she was called on. Today, she is one of the most responsible of the group in her grade,” shared her teacher, Tuaha.

Now she is very happy to attend lessons. “I like to be here at the reading camp and I also enjoy learning, because together with Momade, we play, sing and dance,” Sara smiled. Today, sponsorship in Mozambique has over 80 reading camps supported by our sponsors, reaching over 10,600 children.

Many children are now experiencing a love for learning for the first times in their lives, thanks to you!

Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.

Mangane, an Example of Community Leadership

Mengos

Mr. Mengos

Basic Education Coordinator

Mangane, Mozambique

August 3, 2015

 

Mangane is one of the impoverished communities in Mozambique where the majority of people have no job opportunities, and resort to farming as their daily activity for survival and to sustain their families. Luckily, it is a community where sponsorship programs such as Basic Education, School Health and Nutrition, Early Childhood Care and Development, and Adolescent Development are all being implemented.

School

Mangane Primary School before Save the Children intervention

Prior to Save the Children sponsorship, the school dropout rate had been increasing because parents and caregivers did not value education. A total of 283 children were enrolled in school in 2013, and in 2014 that number has increased to 392, demonstrating an increase of nearly 40%. The sponsorship program helped community mobilization and bringing community leaders to play a role in children’s education. Mangane had only three poor classrooms, both uncomfortable and with unsafe conditions for both children and teachers. However now with the help of sponsorship funds, the community has four new conventional and furnished classrooms and an administrative block, as well as improved and separate latrines built for girls, boys, and teachers. Save the Children is also providing sports equipment to ensure that the school environment is fun and friendly!

Abacar Fadil, is a community leader from Mangane, testified in his own words, “… My name is Abdul Fadil, I am a community leader and also a school council member. I know for sure and see how fast Mangane Primary School changed. A high number of children at school is now visibe from the time [Save the Children sponsorship] came to implement programs in our community. Awareness on parents and caregivers was raised in order to make them understand the importance of school.

School_kids

Mangane Primary School after Save the Children intervention

I remember the time when parents were suffering a lot, every year rearranging the classrooms with local materials, children used to be with no lessons, during the rainy and windy days. Now everyone in the community is happy with what is happening, thanks to SCI programs and I would like to see this happening in other communities to help more children in need.”

Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.

Pre-School, Helping to Build Healthy Habits

Abilio Cossa

Abilio Cossa, Program Officer

Gaza Province, Mozambique

July 30, 2014

 

Save the Children has opened 35 preschool classrooms in 15 communities in the Gaza province, giving 1,225 children an early start to school success. Parents and caregivers have reported on the importance of early development of their children and change in the hygiene habits in the community. “Children that go to pre-school get knowledge about things that are not common in the community and they teach their parents…” said the community leader Nosta.  Laila (with her sister Leila) ready for the graduating cerimony

Getting ready for preschool, Laila, 5, and her sister, Leila, 3, brush their teeth behind their home in a small village outside of Mozambique’s Gaza province. Both girls attend the local Save the Children-supported preschool, where they learn not only the alphabet and counting, but also the importance of good hygiene. These healthy habits are very appreciated by parents, caregivers and other children in the community.

“Preschool is very important because kids develop good habits. They know that when they wake up they have to brush their teeth and comb their hair, get dressed and go to school”, said Laila’s mom, Maria Jose, 35. “These practices were not common in the community and we (parents) are learning from our children… note that… today the children are transmitting us habits that we did not have before.”

Laila and her ECCD colleagues exhibiting their certificatesWhen I asked Laila about what she learned in the pre-school she answered,” We learned that we have to wash our hands before eating and after using the latrine, we also learned that after waking up we have to wash our faces and comb our hair to be beautiful.”

During the interview Laila added, “Today is a special day for me and for my family.” Laila was part of a graduation ceremony. Her mother’s last remarks were, “I feel like I am flying. I am really proud and happy to see my daughter graduating.”

Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.

Literacy Boost – A Success!





Zacarias Mundiara

Zacarias Mundiara, Communications and Campaign Manager

Mozambique

September 30, 2013

 

Idalina teaches at the primary school of Chingoe in Gaza in the district of
Bilene. She and other teachers were the first Gaza teachers to be trained and
to implement Literacy Boost methodology to develop children’s abilities in
reading, writing and numeracy in their respective classes.

Teacher training in Literacy BoostThe fact that these children improved their reading and writing by about 60% in
a single school year attracted the Ministry of Education’s attention. It has
been requesting that Save the Children disclose this methodology to various
circles of interest and technical education within the ministry that ensure the
quality of education. In Mozambique, the quality of education remains a major
challenge. Nearly 25% of all school children can neither read nor write in the
appropriate class.

Idalina has been invited to give a lesson to colleagues and technicians of the
Ministry of Education in Maputo. This shows the differences that the various
strategies and methodologies, including literacy Boost, are starting to make
and that they are starting to be adopted by the Mozambique Government, which is
also concerned with the quality of education.

Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.

Going After A Dream




Tiago Parruque, Provincial Sponsorship Operations Coordinator

Tiago Parruque, Provincial Sponsorship
Operations Coordinator

Mozambique

July 29, 2013


Leadra
Jeremias Tivane stands out for being a success case in the Chaimite community
where she was born, lives and now works. She is 21 years old and completed ​​all the possible education in her community, where schools go from 1st
to 10th grade.
There are few cases in which a girl like Leandra survives in the education
system, especially in poor rural communities like hers.

Leadra
had a sponsor to whom she wrote twice. "The letters I received from my
sponsor were the first and the only ones that I received,” she says. “It was little
but very good. I keep the letters with me.” She participated in several
programs Save the Children implemented in two schools where she studied and has
been a Save the Children volunteer since 2007.

Being
a nurse is Leadra’s dream. Her strong desire to save lives drove her to that
choice.

IMG_1253“Being
nurse is a noble profession,” she told us. “Unfortunately, I have not graduated
as such. However, the dream is unfolding: I am now working at a dispensary in
Chaimte as a reproductive sexual heath councilor and an activist against HIV/AIDS,
urging people to volunteer for testing.

“While
a student, I took part in all the great activities carried out by Save the
Children in my school. I have always had a special curiosity about HIV/AIDS because
many of my schoolmates lost their fathers, mothers and siblings due to this
evil. The fact of it being something preventable led me into thinking that with
knowledge, I would help youngsters and adults alike participate in the process
of its prevention. We could bring down the mortality rate, as well as the
number of orphan children in my community.

“I
took part in various workshops on reproductive sexual health which lead me into
being an activist in the school, as well as in the community.”


IMG_1245

Leandra
has succeeded in convincing many people from her community to undergo voluntary
testing on their HIV/AIDS status. From this group, the focus is on mothers-to-be
so, after discovering their status, they have a chance to start a counseling
and treatment process to avoid the transmission of the disease to their child.

“I
am proud to be helping to save lives and teaching the communities how to improve
their standards of life,” she says. “All of this makes me feel pleased and so
willing to go further.”

 

 Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to learn more.

Ultimate Growth Stock

Together with a group of experts, I spoke at last week’s Clinton Global Initiative on something I have become more and more convinced of the longer I do this work with Save the Children. The best investments we can make for children are those that are made early. The overwhelming evidence shows that if you want to spend money wisely on development, invest in early education and healthcare. The return on those investments will far surpass those you make later in children’s lives.

Read Article

It’s all about where you were born…..and to whom!

This past week and a half was a busy one—I found myself in Washington, DC; Delhi, India; and Copenhagen, Denmark. In addition to spending lots of hours on planes and

sleeping in airports, these vastly different places drove home for me the immense divide between kids’ lives in countries around the world. These differences are rooted in the rate of child survival and the striking disparity in their opportunity for a productive and happy life.

 

In 2010, nearly two million Indian children never had a chance. They died from easily preventable causes before they were five years old—things like pneumonia, prematurity and complications at birth that could have been prevented, and even diarrhea, which claims the lives of tens of thousands of Indian kids every year. This represents the death of 63 kids for every 1,000 born in India in 2010. In contrast, fewer than a thousand children under five died that same year in Denmark, where there are 64,000 annual births—making it one of the highest-ranking countries for child survival. Surprisingly, far more kids died in the US before they made it to 5—32,000 in 2010 or 8 children for every 1,000 born. And we lose most children in the US as babies: 57% of child deaths occur before they are even a month old.

Read Article

Thriving in Nacala: One Community’s Story

I recently spent a week in Africa, my second visit to the continent in 2012.  After a quick stop in Cape Town for The Economist’s global meeting on healthcare in Africa I went on to Mozambique to visit Save the Children programs in rural communities in the north of the country.

 

I came away from this trip with a renewed understanding of the huge difference it makes when a community is really involved with kids’ development. 

Read Article

Culture Snapshot: Xingomana

Joao Sitoi Headshot Joao Sitoi, Sponsorship Manager

Maputo, Mozambique

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Save the Children has sponsorship programs in over twenty countries in five regions of the world! Our Culture Snapshot series highlights unique elements of local culture from each of the regions our sponsorship programs operate in. Check out the last post, "Culture Snapshot: Blind-Cat Game Played by Children in Egypt."

_______________________

Cultural dance is very popular in Mozambique. The most popular dance in the rural community of 3 de Fevereiro – “3rd of February” – is xingomana, which is performed by both children and adults.  Xingomana, accompanied by songs rich in meaning and context, has also become an important tool to communicate educational messages such as the dangers of early pregnancies and the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS.



 Watch Mozambicans dancing throughout Nampula!

Do you like to dance? Tell us about your favorite style or reason to dance in the comments section below. We'd love to hear from you!

_______________________

Interested in joining our community of sponsors? Click here to find out more

Using Art Education and Therapy to Help Preschoolers in Mozambique Fight the Effects of HIV/AIDS

Veronica Photo Veronica

Guemulene Village, Gaza District, Mozambique

June 15, 2010

In
the rural areas of Mozambique where Save the Children works, almost all
children have been affected by the AIDS crisis, losing family members
and teachers to the disease.   

Save the Children, through funding from the Charles Engelhard Foundation and the 2007 Idol Gives Back
TV fundraising event, began piloting an innovative program using visual
arts to help give children a voice to their emotions about difficult
events in their every day lives in rural Mozambican preschools or
“escolinhas” in 2008.

As part of the “Healing and Education through Art” or HEART program, preschool teachers participated
in three training sessions. Monica, a
preschool teacher, shares her thoughts about how the training has helped improve her work with children:

“Children need to feel free to express whatever happens to them – good or bad.  But I cannot force them to express their feelings or thoughts.  Still, I am surprised at how much young children remember what they see and hear, but do not have the language to express themselves. 

We created a space at our preschools with art activities for children. Through art, children can finally express themselves and things they remember seeing and hearing.

Let me tell you about a little girl in our preschool named Gracindabel. When she first arrived at school, she would not speak or participate in activities with other classmates. She would often urinate in the classroom. During art activities, she would break her pencil or start drawing violently on her paper.  

My training had taught me to recognize the signs of a child who needs special attention. I was patient with Gracindabel, and over time, during the art activities, I noticed that she started to talk more with her classmates, participate in group work, and stopped going to the bathroom in the classroom. 

One day, she made a doll out of clay with one arm. She then went on to tell me a detailed imaginary story about a girl whose arm was bitten off by the crocodile that lives in the river behind her home. This was such a remarkable change from a child who started out afraid to speak or participate in class!

Before the teacher trainings, when I saw a child like Gracindabel who didn’t want to participate, talk or play, I would just let that child be and not do anything. Now, I have learned ways to find out what’s wrong with the child, helping that child to try to resolve her problems. I like my job so much now and have a lot of fun with the children.”