South Africa: A Geographers Playground

Well I’m sat in another airport (this time Cape Town International) wondering where the time went – again! I have spent a fantastic 6 days in the country, although I will need to come back and spend a lot more time. I have been struck by the similarities between our education systems. There are also differences. One Geography Teaching in a township school summed it up nicely: ‘Our teaching resources are in print and the imagination of the learner’.

I hope I have made some firm contacts and life-long friends. After half term there will be contact between learners from a school in the suburbs of Cape Town and my own. My one frustration is that I did not have enough time to spend with the teachers here due to a packed schedule. Having said this I did do my best to slow down to ‘African Time!’

My advice to SLT’s planning on this kind of venture is to ensure that the teachers travelling have accurate and detailed information about the schools. Also, our culture of targets and instant results will not bear fruit – you have to be patient. I was told by a Deputy Principal that ‘ We are laid back, not lazy.’ In my limited time here I believe this to be a true reflection of the attitude here. The teachers and pupils are inspiring.

The pictures are of me behind the Berg River Dam and a winery.

I will post a full report in sections when I stop moving around!

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