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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. 

          Security at window, funded by TS.
 
      Nana with children in new KG we built.     Outside view of building, gardening left to do
  . 
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:

Kathy 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 

 Area of KG in Ayensudo.

   


Teachers learn to help children learn by doing.  Play centers with learning objects, there are many in a classroom

Scholarship Students (University):
We provide scholarships to three university students.  These young men have been performing well and paying it forward for years.  They are our pioneers helping us learn to "make education possible".  We are proud to watch them pursue their future.

     
 
Rudolph M, Solomon E. and Francis W.        Francis arranging the "thank you"   
 
                Rudolph and Solo with laptops

Rudolph will enter 4th year at KNUST (Ghana's primary science university) studying herbal medicine (Pharmacy).  He is president of his HM class and involved in many campus activities.  He is a great soccer player also.

Solomon will enter third year UCC (nearby Cape Coast) in Education Mgmt.  He has a gift with the small children and a certain wisdom about finding common ground solutions.  He is president of the UCC Lions club.  

Francis will enter second year at UCC in optometry.  He had nearly straight As first term may achieve it when second term results come out.  He does a fine job as coordinator at Abrem Essiam.

 
Scholarship Students (Edinaman High School)

We currently provide scholarships to 9 students at Edinaman HS.  We will increase this number in September.  

A total of 25 recently graduated (the change from 4 to 3 years caused a double graduating class) and many are helping us.  Some will go to university, but likely not for a year.
     
                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.

Libraries:

Tomorrow's 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.


  Isaac at Abrem Essiam
                                  

Sue Gonzales volunteering again:
In June/July, Sue Gonzalez makes her third trip to Elmina area to volunteer with us.  This time her project is a girl's club at Bantuma JHS to help them with education and life planning.  She will have help from a local teacher and past scholarship students Dorcas E. and Letitia E.  We will add some photos and details when she returns.

      Sue at Bantuma Library

Here are some photos that remind us of what we do and things we see.

 
    
Golf day with George and pro Daniel.         George handed out "keep" books  
  
 Mary Ann with biology teacher Cynthia.  ​  George bought some coconut from this woman  
     

               Elmina is a fishing village                                       The children

THANKS FOR YOUR CONTINUING SUPPORT, WE CAN'T DO IT WITHOUT YOU!!!!
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