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Places | Tanga, Tanzania| Tanga International School

Visiting Tanga International School
By Alex
In Tanzania there is a big town called Tanga .  In Tanga I went to a school.  I got to go to this school because I met this Dutch family at a yacht club that we stayed at.  This Dutch family consisted of four people; two adults and two children.  The adults were called Luuk and Birgit.  Their children were called Nina and Ben.  Nina was 9 and Ben was 6 and they went to this school called Tanga International School (TIS). This is the school I went to for two weeks.

Now I want to tell you how small this school is.  The school is in an old house in a big garden. There are only a few more than 30 children in this school.  Grades 4, 5 and 6 all share one classroom.  Grades 1, 2 and 3 share one classroom as well.  Nina’s class has only got 7 or 8 kids, but the other class has about 12.  Kindergarten also has about 12.  But there are lots of things at this school.  They have a kindergarten, a basketball court, a football field, two classrooms, a playground, a cookery kitchen, an art-room, a garden, a food collection hut and a generator.

I will now describe one day at school. So one morning, I woke up to the ringing of my mum’s alarm which went off at 7:30 am because I was told that the school starts at 8 o clock.   I got dressed, prepared a lunch box, woke Casper up, got the dingy (small boat) in the water, drove ashore, got my shoes on, met my friend Nina at the gate of the yacht club and stepped in the car at 7:50 am.   We arrived at the school at 7:55 am, played for five minutes and then the bell rang and we all ran inside to Mr. McCloskey’s class.  When everybody sat down, we got a sheet of mathematics; we had 45 minutes to finish the sheet.  It was very interesting because it had roman numerals, factors, divisions, + sums and also – sums, times tables  and word sums.  Then we checked all the answers. 

After that it was already play time (10:00 am).  We all ran outside and practiced goaling for football.  The kids who didn't want to practice goaling could sit on the swings or play basket ball or play mini-cricket or play tag and so on.  But when the real football game started, all the kids of grade 4, 5 and 6 joined in.   When playtime was over, the bell rang again.   Everybody had a drink and went back to class.  Then we watched a video about Maasai (they are traditional people of Africa) but it wasn’t for fun, we had to take notes about the film and then write a long story about it.  Because I was the first one to finish, I got ten questions about endangered species  of wildlife.  It was very hard and took a long time but in the end I got it all correct. 

Then we had a sort of word game, called pictionary.  This is how it works; each table has a card for each person.  Each person may look only at his or her own card when it is his or her turn.  There are four words of things on each card which he or she has to draw.  The others have to guess what it is as soon as possible.  When a card is done, because all of the words are drawn and guessed, the next person looks at his or her card and so on.  The table that is done first wins.  Unfortunately, we didn’t win.

After the spelling word game we had art.  We went to art class and waited for a while.  When Mrs Katherine (teacher of grade 1,2,3) came she said that we should draw 2 big dots on a piece of paper and then draw 10 small dots.  It didn’t matter where you drew them.  Then you connect all of the small dots to both of the big dots with straight lines.  Then you take 3 or 4 different colours of oil pastels.  Then you colour in the shapes you made with the lines but you are not allowed to put two of the same colours next to each other. 

After we had art we went to play, it was already 1 o’clock pm.  We played football again for half an hour.  I had already finished all my food at playtime so I bought some popcorn, because there wasn’t a lot of choice.  There was some kind of yellow stuff which I didn’t like.  Or there was popcorn, so I got that.  After this break it was already 1:30 pm. 

The school officially ends at 1 pm but then there’s extra stuff, that starts at 1:30 pm.  That was the time that Mrs. Katherine called us all in the car for photo club.  All the kids said what they wanted a picture of.  They named things like banks, market, library, fish market and clock tower.  First we went to the market.  It smelled very bad, but it looked quite interesting.  So we took some pictures.  Then we went to 4 banks.  Some were boring, some were OK.  But we still took pictures.  Then we went to the fish market.  When we got out of the car we walked down to where the fishermen were offloading the fish.  Then something funny happened (almost everybody knows that swordfish are huge).  So this little kid pointed at this 10 cm. Long fish with this tiny little spike and says ‘look!  A swordfish!’  I won’t laugh about it because I don’t want to make fun of the kid.  After we got back in the car we went back to school.  We didn’t go to the library because we already had pictures of it.  It was a shame though because I hadn’t seen the library yet.  When we got back it was the end of school time because it was already 2:30 p.m.  All the children played when they waited for their parents to pick them up.  Nina’s mother came too so we went back to her house and stayed to play at her house.  I really enjoyed it at her school and playing at her house. 


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