Planting the Seed for Growth

MasaKHANe is constantly looking for new ways to grow, a factor that was taken literally this term with the first Day Zero. Day Zero is a concept that centers around giving students practical learning experiences, something that they may not receive in normal schooling. It doesn’t have to be directly related to the Maths or English curriculum, but will always be fundamentally educational. With a focus on the FUN.

Therefore, team MasaKHANe organised the first Day Zero in partnership with the Healthy Village Project and the Jabulani Rural Health Foundation. Primarily run by Emily Lloyd, a Project Trust volunteer, and supported by the whole MasaKHANe team, the day was a great success! The Healthy Village Project aims to promote a healthy village, as its name suggests. Consequentially, the day involved an exciting tree game as an icebreaker and learning about the importance of trees (i.e. why they are used, what they are used for). It also included a creative writing task – ‘If your tree could grow anything in the world, what would it grow?’ One creative answer was mutton and bread. The same tree would also heal a person from any illness if they lay at its base and asked ‘Please tree, help me! I’m cel‘ing you’.

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However, the primary fruits of the day were produced by the actual planting of the trees. We split the students into groups, with each group having the opportunity to plant their own tree. Although at first the students were a bit reluctant to get their hands dirty, by the end they were all mucking in. After the tree was planted the students invented names for their trees, such as the ‘Nae Nae Tree’ and the ‘Golden Chocolate Tree.’

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The students gained an invaluable experience in that they have put something in Zithulele soil that will remain long after they have gone. The day in itself was one of excitement and the students learnt whilst having fun – All in all, quintessentially Day Zero! We look forward to seeing what future Day Zero’s will encompass, but with the enthusiasm of the students and Team MasaKHANe, we can be sure they will be as enthralling as the first.

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