- South Africa
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Volunteer with teaching in struggling communities in the beautiful coastal Garden Route. town of Knysna, South Africa. From caring for little ones at creches to assisting in the classrooms with teachers at primary and high schools with English, Sports, Music, Drama, Sciences, Mathematics, Geography and Computer Skills.
Classes are big and boisterous at times, but volunteers are greatly appreciated and welcomed by the teaching staff and the learners and new ideas are always welcome. This truly is a very rewarding experience and often volunteers have gone on to study teaching because they have been so affected by the time spent volunteering in the schools. Helping a child grasp a subject they were battling with, teaching a choir a new song, showing the teacher different drama exercises, or helping coach a new sport can make a long-term difference.
- Assist with teaching English as a second language in the classroom and breaks sit with small reading groups in the library. English is taught from Grade 1.
- Share your love and knowledge of Music, Drama and Dance by getting involved in Creative Arts classes and inspire learners and sharing ideas with teachers for new methods. Often choir practise is in break or after school.
- Life Orientation classes are a great time for Physical Education and Sports. The learners love soccer, netball and rugby but it is always fun to introduce new exercises and sports.
- As classes are big, some of the learners struggle. This is the perfect time to spend some individual time trying to get them up to speed with what they are being taught with the South African curriculum
- So much to do in your weekends! Animal Sanctuaries, craft markets, safaris, boat trips, whale watching, hike the Knysna forest, snorkel and swim in the estuary and beaches or just take in shops and restaurant making friends with the warm locals.
In the schools we work with, English is a second language taught from Grade 1. The children themselves often do not get much opportunity to speak English at home so volunteers are great and getting them to learn to converse and feel confidant in English. Volunteers can give more specialised one-on-one attention to those learners struggling in the class and bring new ideas and outlooks often even teaching the teachers new methods within the classroom especially with creative arts and physical education. As many of the learners do not even travel down in to the local town, international volunteers bring the world to them giving them brighter and bigger dreams as often they know nothing about the world outside the town let alone the country. We often have been asked years later about certain volunteers who the learners, now having finished school, still remember for their kindness, attention and care.