Inheriting Heritage

Hi, I’m Daniel, a Westtown senior from Media, PA. This is my fourteenth and final year at Westtown, so I am hoping to make it my best. I will be traveling to Ghana to teach at Heritage Academy, the school that T. Kwesi  and T. Melissa helped to start.

I have heard a lot about Heritage Academy over the years. When I was in sixth grade, we exchanged pen-pal letters with some of the students in Ghana. Also, my brother Francis went on this trip for his senior project, and he brought back lots of pictures and stories about his experience. I will be bringing a camera, so I might be able to send back pictures, but that depends on the internet in one of the towns near the school, and I have heard it is a little finicky.

This will not be my first time out of the country. I’ve been to Europe several times in the past (England, Italy, Norway, Greece) but never to Africa. I have a lot of preconceptions about where we will be going, so I look forward to being surprised and having those expectations shattered.

During the week, our group (we have 10 students, I believe) will teach at Heritage. I plan to teach Math. So far, the math I will be teaching involves fractions, decimals, and percentages. I will be sharing this responsibility with another student, so hopefully this brief stint as a teacher will involve more fun and less panic about standing in front of an expecting crowd of Ghanaian students. We will be teaching two or three sections a day, so I suppose that by the end of our stay, I will at least have figured out what does and does not work when teaching several sections of a class. The classes are fairly large, but I haven’t heard an exact number yet. As far as I know, it will be around 30 students in a class.

We will be staying in a guest house some distance away from the school, which sounds like it could be interesting. It will be odd going from a North American winter with 30-degree weather an snow to Ghana where it will probably be around 90 degrees every day. I anticipate a very difficult transition in the first few days of our stay in Ghana.

Now, I have to focus on packing all of my gear and deciding exactly what I will be teaching. That, and counting down the days before we leave. Good luck, Ghana 2011!

Daniel

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