TOMORROW'S STARS NEWS: SUMMER 2013:
It is an exciting time for Tomorrow's Stars in Elmina, Ghana.
Paying It Forward: Scholarship students "push those who are climbing"
A big part of Tomorrow's Stars philosophy is to have our successful students help their "juniors". We now have a program in place to identify good students in grades 5-7 at 4 schools.
Our scholarship students will mentor them and use our "Backtrack" method to enhance their learning and ensure their success on the 9th grade national BECE exam. This occurs during school vacations (May, August and Dec) and sometimes after school days. The backtrack method emphasizes student participation in 3 ways: 1-We begin with review of earlier material to give a strong foundation. 2-Students grade their own quizzes, 3-Teachers don't lecture, students ask questions and discuss answers with use of textbooks.
We are quite proud of our key students, Rudolph M, Solomon E, Richard I, Letitia E, Otabil A, Christopher A, Solomon M and others who are paying it forward. We are confident that this student development process with give us better HS scholarship students from the community and more loyalty to the Pay It Forward idea.
Grade 9 students preparing with "Backtrack" help from Solo, and Otabil and Christopher, recent HS grads.
Chris with 5 Grade 9 students. Eric and Otabil preparing circuit demo.
Rudolph helping James and Francis. Making Education Possible at Abrem Essiam:
There is more about this success story on its own page, it is a village about 45 minutes from Elmina.
With the help of our best student Francis Wiredu who has completed first year at University in Optometry (nearly straight As) and his father Nana; we have a library and have built a KG Nursery building with great help from the community. Isaac (a high school grad hoping for admission to teacher's college) is the librarian.
Francis is our Tomorrow's Stars coordinator there. Recently the Ghana government started a laptop assembly factory and is providing laptops to schools free of charge if they have a secure place to store them between classes.
Enter Tomorrow's Stars!!! We have a computer room in the library. We funded a simple construction project to secure windows and door with locks and bars. It was quickly completed by Nana and the village and they were ready for the gov't visit and 11 laptops were awarded to Abrem Essiam. THAT is what I call making education possible!!!!
Francis, Isaac and Nana with laptop cabinet. Francis at secure door to computer room.
Nana with children in new KG we built. Outside view of building, gardening left to do .
Security at window, funded by TS.
Visitors from US came to Abrem, toured the village and projects and helped in the library.
The Torch Passes at Christ Cares School:
Christ Cares is where we started over 10 years ago. We funded the buildings and the children and teachers helped collect sand and make blocks; some fond memories. There have been some difficult times there in the past 3-4 years but still there are 300 students in Nursery to Grade 9.
In recent changes, we have a NEW Headmaster, Maxwell Appiah!! Yes, he is the boy who George met on his run nearly 13 years ago. Now 24, he has taken the job and is showing good leadership and management skills. He has full support of the PTA as well as Tomorrow's Stars.
It seems a great coincidence that his appointment occurred a week before George arrived in May. At the same time, many of his friends and past TS scholars were home for the summer. So, Rudolph, Solomon and others are helping Maxwell and the students and teachers for the summer and earning money from Tomorrow's Stars for their further education. They are determined to "make the school great"!!
Christ Cares is also where most of the "Pay it Forward" and Backtrack activities occur, it is still a great facility.
Christ Cares at closing assembly Rudolph and George and Solo and Maxwell
Maxwell, Samuel, Lydia and Shadrack.
Computer lab with 9 working computers. Grade 1 with teacher Catherine with visitor Michelle
KG 1 with teacher Christina
Education from the beginning: Play centered KG:
Weir has been in Ghana for most of the past 3 years. This year she has
been working with SABRE TRUST on the "Transformational Kindergarten
Teacher Training" with a focus on play based learning. This program seeks
to quickly change the style of the teachers and classrooms. This
consists of 14 KG classes at 12 schools. We are working
in conjunction with Ghana Education Service, Unicef, DIFD and other
partners and donors. Kathy is heavily involved in support of the KG
teacher training and helping teachers learn how to use locally available
materials for the classroom play centers.
This is the project that can change everything. It is what is needed to improve literacy across the nation.
We are proud of Kathy and the work she has done to get and keep this pilot project rolling.
KG teacher training discussions Making games with recycled items
A group of recent grads Emmanuel and Otabil
Eric Current students with Teacher Mr Quaye Laurenda, a scholarship candidate for next year.
Mr Quaye is a business teacher at Edinaman and helps us with communication about any scholarship matters as well as helping the students to achieve their goals.
Stars supports libraries at 3 schools. We take pride in having the
books and materials that "make sense" in Ghana. Recently the Abrem
Essiam library added some textbooks and study guides for use by High
School students to prepare for their national WASSCE exam. Our librarians are past scholarship students "paying it forward" and earning money for future education.
Bantuma Library. Letitia at CCP library, she had shelves made for books.