Connecting Kids Wildlife Studies – Latest Report from Bonnie



Wildlife Protection : One Planet Education Network brings  Bungoma Kenya SSBI Hands of Charity partners with Haiti, and US students together. 


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SKYPE with Haiti  and US students started well whereby our learners were very happy about having a distance learning event in their schools. We started with Namwesi primary school on Friday where teachers went to prepare learners on what the skype will be about. and prepare distance learning event whereby as Bungoma team were to talk about wildlife especially Rhino and Elephants with learners from different schools of NYC, Haiti, North Carolina and representave from AWF and Marinelife representative talking about hawksbill turtles.

Bungoma team was so proud to talk to George and others including Dr. Ronelus who they said his a black American teacher of Haitian origin.
On Monday 6th June 2016, was a great day for Namwesi primary pupils to participate in the distance learning event to prepare notes on wildlife so that they can do their presentations perfectly Those to participate were, Brighton, Shamillah, Obadiah, Evans and Faith.

It was 2.00 pm when Hands of Charity staff arrived Namwesi school compound to facilitated a long waited event. Students were much eager to see and hear from American students. “Tunaenda kuongea na wanafunzi wazungu”, we are going to talk to white students. You could find them making fun of talking like Americans. When time came, 3.30 pm our hp device donated to us by Small Solutions  and BRCK router were set ready to perform.

When the heard an incoming Skype call from George Newman they smiled in a secret manner not showing up there curiosity towards what was going to happen the next minute.The call was answered by video and they heard and saw Mr. Newman first then followed by different participants. Thereafter, all the eyes was on the screen to see what will happen next. Our students were surrised to see Dr. Ronelus with his students and his bass voice. They were also much interested with how their colleagues classrooms well equipped compared to Bungoma classrooms.



The common killed animals among the BIG 5 include;

Lion Elephant Rhino

LION: Reason why poached  Is poached and killed mainly because of it’s skin and heart according to our local understanding.Its skin is used for making leather shoes and bags. Its heart is used by the army soldiers as food. Locals belief that, the hearts make them to be as brave as the Lion ( a myth)

ELEPHANTS Are huge animals. They are mainly hunted because of their tusks.

RHINO They are mainly hunted for their horns.2.The horns cure cancer3.Other communities believes that the horns acts as a right of passage from childhood to adulthood.4The horns are used in making ornaments in some countries e.g. Kenya and Switzerlandwhich include, braceletes, bangles, earrings,. Cancer cure

SKIN The skins are removed from their bodies and sold in manufacturing industriesThe skin is used in making leather shoes, bags and clothes according to local understanding.

Suggestions to the government as a way of improving wildlife security.

1. We would like the government of Kenya to employ more game wardens.

2. Do capacity building to the entire community and who the government suspect as the poachers on the importance of wildlife and,

3. Employ the poachers who freely surrender themselves to the government as a way of stopping poaching.

4. Those people with big farms to be allowed the government to build sanctuaries as a way of bringing security near the citizen.


Earns Kenya foreign exchange after the tourist had visited Kenya. It is a pride of our country. The forests acts as water cachment areas and bring rain fal. l Help other tourists to have trips in Kenya to see animals that do not exist in the other countries.


RHINO: A Rhino is one of the big animals in Kenya. It is strong wide and big animal that feeds on grass. It issaid that it normally feed on grass at night. It stays in the forest

ELEPHANT:An elephant is a huge animal found in the forest. It lives for about 80 years. Its young one is called a calf. It normally feeds on grass during the day. They have two tusks on their noses and a strong trunk that runs from the forehead. They are mainly hunted for their tusks/ivory.

Daniel_PosterStopDestroyingFriday Butonge primary school. – class seven

Used paint activity to choose colors. . They drew a green vegetation as a simple of a place having enough rainfall and a good place for crop farming. Kids indicated rivers passing through that vegetation area and colored it with blue as a symbol of water and big trees showing the importance of forests. The purpose was to tell others on the importance of afforestation and effects of afforestation. The idea of afforestation is coming up to due increased number of cutting trees in the area they come from. 51 students attended the sessions as 26 laptops were used per session.




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Imagine You Could Do This Too! African Friends

Hands of Charity and  Kenya Friends of Small Solutions
We could do this… join the movement, create fashion from ‘trash’!

View on Youtube:


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by Loren Malaguzzi

The child is made of one hundred |The child has a hundred languages | a hundred hands | a hundred thoughts | a hundred ways of thinking, of playing, of speaking. | A hundred always a hundred | ways of listening | a marveling of loving | a hundred joys | for singing and understanding | a hundred worlds | to discover | a hundred worlds | to invent | a hundred worlds | to dream.

The child has a hundred languages | but the steal ninety nine. | The school and the culture separate the head from the body. | They tell the child: to think without hands | to do without heart  | to listen and not to speak | to understand without joy | to love and to marvel only at Easter and at Christmas, | they tell the child:  to discover the world already there | of a the hundred, they steal ninety-nine.  They tell the child: that work and play reality and fantasy | science and imagination | sky and earth  | reason and dream | are things | that do not belong together.  | And they tell the child that the hundred is not there | The child says | NO way, The hundred is there.

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Endangered Wildlife

Who is Smarter, Humans or Animals?

Small Solutions Big Ideas has been delighted with the art produced by our Hands of Charity project participants.  They have been researching, writing, and creating art on the issue of wildlife protection for several years now.

The illustrations and story created by the students tells about how the animals take on the issue of poaching. The animals discuss how to protect their endangered brothers.  In these drawings the humans have guns. The animals don’t have guns, so they use other powers to drive poachers away.   In our human world, we use guns often to protect ourselves, or to get rid of people perceived to be dangerous and to solve conflicts.

Animals also have conflicts. Sometimes these are solved in violent confrontations, but confrontations of skill or stealth. When one person has a gun and another doesn’t, the one without the gun feels helpless.  They feel they must get a gun.  But is that a solution to conflict? Are animals more creative and smarter in the ways they solve conflict and address power struggles, such as competition for food ?

I ask this question of the children and students?    What other ways are there to face danger and solve conflicts?  Please post your ideas here Bukokholo students.


NEW ART 2 33Daniel_PosterStopDestroyingLastDaysofPoachers

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Deepening Learning

How do we change learning?  It’s not just about getting computers and teaching kids to use them,  it is about deepening and accelerating the learning.  Change attitudes and a vision of what learning can be.

In the 21st century model of learning, teachers are no longer delivering learning, they are mentors, guides, collaborators in learning activities.  They are empowering children to think on their own, to articulate and understand their own learning process, and to excel.

The hurdles are many:  too many children, too few teachers, too few laptops,  not enough time in a school days. And often there is not the teacher capacity or the resources to direct students past the standard content and expectations.  The biggest hurdle however is often built in cultural attitudes towards learning and the potential of the children.

The large population of African children y must be ready to take on real world challenges now, before they are have finished their schooling.  This requires a new approach.  Project based learning is one of these approaches.

We are very grateful for Chole Richard’s work with Hands of Charity to help them fully use this model, and implement child centered learning in their projects.  Even though these hands on projects have been going on for a couple of years, the students must learn now to lead them, and go further in their learning.

We must work with the students on all fronts, improving their writing, articulation of ideas, critical thinking, understanding of social cultural issues, and the means of cultural change, become true advocates of their country’s future.

Hands of Charity now has full access to the internet to expand the research, reading, and literacy of their students.  They have tools for accelerating mathematics in Turtle Blocks,  and Scratch.  They are good at using media, images and song to express their ideas.  They can find on-line information they need to improve the science of their projects – digging into the ecological issues of animal habitats, and the cultural structure of wild animal life.

We have great hopes for you all.

Here are girl’s working on Scratch in November during Sandra Thaxter’s visit. And Elvis one of our talented artists.



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Chole’s Training & Inspiration


Last week Chole Richard of Jina Uganda, a teacher A PMM Secondary School. Chole is also a Teched leader. He introduced the Hands of Charity teachers to project based learning as a 21st century approach to learning.

Chole explained that it is a learner driven learning program in which the learners are actively engaged in problem solving of real world issues that affect them. As a learner driven program, the students identify with the problem at hand and are inspired to learn everything to solve it.

He played a video clip giving a brief explanation of what project based learning is: Youtube link to project based learning explained PBL.

The key differences between PBL and the traditional method of learning.  PBL is Learner centered Teacher centered whereas traditional learning is compartmentalized into subjects. Traditional Tends to be judgmental; punishing mistakes. Mistakes are often opportunities for reflections and evaluation. Greater emphasis on cognitive learning. In PBL emphas is on all the three domains of learning.


Emphasis on memorization…. Aims at higher order thinking

Competitive learning………….. Teamwork; collaboration

Tends to be less concerned with technology…Technology as an integral tool of learning

Little regards for individual differences ..Complete attention to individual differences.

Disregard for student exhibition… Exhibition is an integral part of learning activity

Chole also took time to explain the general need to revisit the purpose of education if the real benefit of PBL and technology in learning activities are to be realized.

He stressed particularly the need to equitably attend to the three domains of learning and the need to drive the learners to higher order thinking even as we attend to the lower order thinking.

Chole says that he also laid emphasis on individual differences of learners, further that there are two key elements in PBL which needs to be present – making the program learner driven and ensuring active participation and in-depth knowledge of their chosen subject matter.

Learners have their own experiences and concerns for which they should be given opportunity to express and build on. It is crucial that the learners work on projects they identify with and own if PBL is to be of any meaning.The projects by their very nature have a start and an end. They start with the learners conceiving an idea and ending with final feedback and evaluation. The key steps/activities in project based learning. • Recognizing or identifying a need/problem • Identifying target beneficiaries. • Formulating clear aims and objectives • Identifying methodologies. • Identifying tools and resourceful persons • Drawing up a work plan • Executing of the plan • Punctuated by continuous reviews, critique, and self evaluation • Completed work outcome/end product to the identified beneficiaries • Feedback from the field and further self-evaluation • Exhibition/Sharing of learning experiences in the whole process 4 I added that project based learning is not a one day affair but may take months, a full school term of even a year. I laid more emphasis on the importance of evaluation which is all involving and takes very many forms

For instance:  Taking note of students’ increased enthusiasm to participate and learn  Taking note of how they come up with their own ideas either for the ongoing project or for a new one.  Asking students to make reflections of their learning points in written or spoken form.  Evaluation at individual level or as a class/program 


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Term Break Activities

Busy weekend marketplace center sessions.

Busy weekend marketplace center sessions.


The month was with a lot of activities to be done since it was a holiday, kids were to come at the center and learn from there. We as teachers planned to have a science camp which was done from the marketplace center near Bukokholo in Bungoma County.

1st and 2nd which was a weekend, and learners came at the center as from 10.00 am to 5.30pm. They used tamtam mini, tamtam jam to enjoy themselves from music others used speak, browse, and record activities. Those who used browse discussed different subjects such as physics, chemistry since they were secondary students. From them young kids learned that with discussion they can learn more things that were not understanding.

3rd and 4th which was Monday at Butonge and Tuesday at Namwesi, it was a free class where students were to do any activity they like as from 3.00 pm to 5.30pm as teachers were walking around to see if any student is stuck and assist. The lesson was much interesting because most of the learners were doing paint activity and scratch to perfect on their drawing and scratch animation.

5th Wednesday, 6th Thursday and 7th Friday at the market place centre kids in good numbers and were grouped according to the ages and classes at school and teachers gauged them on what they can do on XO sugar lab activities. Every group was to explain an activity that they know to others.

8th and 9th it was a weekend where learners did keyboard work at the market place. This is to ensure that all learners to master the whole keyboard and each button with it’s functions. All kids were attentive in that sector because teachers were to evaluate them over work done on the keyboard.

10th to 14th- At the market centre- Learners from different schools came for lessons so we arranged 3 teachers to be on duty to help learners on which activities they were to do and introduce new learners on XO sugar lab activites sincw we never miss new learners at the center at any given holiday. They were three teachers per session as from 10.00am to 5.30pm. These was the day learners did most of write activity to master all the functions of every key on the keyboard. They used brackets, exclamation marks, colons, semi-colons, question marks, comma, full stops etc.

15th and 16th – It was a weekend- learners did write activity for familiarization both for old students and new students. we asked them to use all punctuation marks and inserting of tables, alignments of paragraphs and inserting of their pictures (images) on a text. They enjoyed too much as others kept on repeating same work for several times.

17th- 21st- Monday to Friday-Learners did turtle art where they constructed different shapes as per math arrangements. We had new students who saw it as a difficult activity but with time they manned and did well. They were showed how to use pen size, pen shade and pen color for them to know more about the activity.

22nd to 23rd- weekend- It was a short break for the teachers.24th to 25th-camp planning between teachers and students over the roles to play in that science camp.

26th-Was to be the first day of the camp for the registration of kids to participate in the camp. There was a lot of co-operation among the learners which were to participate. We had those who were to present paint, turtle art and write activities. There was a lot of competition among themselves. We liked their arrangement.

27th-Arrival of students from different schools who were registered to attend to the camp,

1-The camp overview  2-Grouping of students as per an activity 3-Topic orientation by each teacher as per group 4-Entertainment

-Afternoon each group was assigned to an activity as per camp focus..Group were as follows;

-Paint activity -Write activity -Speak activity -Scratch activity -Etoys activity -Browse and solar system.

28th-Discussion and writing stories over what was done on paint activity, paint, scratch, memorize, maze, Record, browse and sharing off pictures and discuss the impact of those pictures.

29th-Was teachers camp review and recommendation over what kids did in the camp.

30th-31st-Teachers rested after the camp.


*Inadequate facilities for the camp due to high number of students

*The target was not met because funding was not to expected and budgeted for.

*Days were few as per proposal expectation.


*Young kids aged 4-8 years were so many at the camp with aim of learning and eating not even wasting a single second at the time of arrival. When the time for lunch arrived they were very keen and excited.

*Girls were much interested in singing , poetry, narrative talks and computer learning than boys.

*Boys were good artists by use of paint activity than girls.

*Girls attended the camp more than the boys in numbers.

*Those kids who were infested with the jiggers before, were free from infestation. Due to lesson learned, attended the camp and as a result others were motivated with the previous camp results . As a sign of togetherness they came and joined others to learn in problem identification and solving as their fellow kids are doing with the case of jiggers..

*The parents who were interested with the camp challenged their children to be so keen in whatever is happening in camp venue.

*Memorize activity improved the learners imaginations

*Learners were much interested with the camp, so they were just forced to leave the place because time was not on our site.

*Because of insufficient funds, our camp was not a boarding camp but was half board camp.


-It was achieved because students were able to explain why they were doing activity or drawing those pictures.

-Kids improved on self explanation and esteem they planned how to identify problems and then have a better solution.

-They used pictures to teach the whole world over what is happening to endangered species namely black rhino and elephants

-Students have known which animals are mostly poached and most endangered animals.

-Promotion of child to child interaction

– Teachers were given name tags for easier identification in schools and market center.

-Learners are able to talk about proper trash disposable and plastic reuse.

-The camp brought kids together and throught it they have known their child rights as that to education, food and expression.


*We need more facilitation for the camps to promote child to child interaction.

*There should be funds upgrading so as to meet our target for the future science camps (more funds needed).

*There should be learning by seeing i.e Learners should be exposed to some game parks and game reserves to see which animals are being targeted with poachers then have chance to interview game wardens over the same.

*Teachers motivational tour- teachers should be taken out at least once per year for them to share and exchange views with other OLPC sites country wide. At the end ,this will promote team work and experience.

* Learners who are performing well to be awarded for others to work hard.

* Intersite camp competition (OLPC) as promotion of XO sugar lab activities to different parts of Kenya.


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Women as Tech Teachers

These young women make it possible to reach hundreds of students each week with laptops and learning.  They provide role models for young girls to see a future through learning, technology and access to information.  They help students build confidence in their own voices and intelligence.

During the July visit, we started providing them with goods to sell.  They are selling in the marketplaces and pooling their funds to invest in more entrepreneurial endeavors.  They have asked for help to purchase small motor bikes so that they can earn money after school by transporting passengers and ease their transport to school with the computers for the classes.  The piki pikis are usually driven by young men. These young women are stepping out.  Donate to their motor bikes.

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Hands of Charity Technology Center Success

2013-09-16 17.44.15(2)WP_20141230_054

Busy weekend marketplace center sessions.

2014-11-29Marketplace--1 Busy weekend marketplace center sessions.

Hands of Charity Bukokholo Marketplace Technology Education Center is a hub of activity.  It attracts children from the many villages and homes around the hills north of Bukokholo.  On weekends more than 100 children come to use the 50, now aging laptops that were provided by Small Solutions and funded by students from a high school in Massachusetts.

During the week these laptops are taken to schools int he area by the Hands of Charity teams.  They serve more than 2000 children through their programs.  This is the success model.   Small Solutions Big Ideas will help others teams in our network develop models such as these.   A new Center has started north of Nairobi on Thika road in the Marurui Estate by Krys Kakoba of the OLPC Alliance, and Maina Kiambigi, founder of the Pleng School. Together we are developing this model  to bring technology the most direct and speedy way to the most number of children.   Below is our strategy premises.

Why ‘Centers for Technology for Education’

In Kenya schools where the need is the greatest, we are challenged by the absence of resources to support technology. Waiting for electricity, and every teacher to be ready comprises the furture for the children waiting now. We cannot wait. Our model is setup to be fast and flexible, and to concentrate expertise and technology in these centers. There we can build and deliver programs for member schools as network of technology educators and innovative schools :

Why? Schools do not reliably have:
-Electricity (sufficient and reliable)
-Safe storage for equipment
-Connectivity (both available and sufficient)
-Teachers ready to use technology
-Time for teachers to receive training (demands on their time are already challenging)
-Experience to select and apply technology to improving learning (integration)
– Resource staff to maintain technology over the long term

Why our model of technology delivery and education solves these problems:
-Concentrate expertise and resources where they can be maintained and enhanced
-Establish trained teams dedicated to schools and teachers to build strong programs
-Hire staff with technical expertise to configure, repair, upgrade, and maintain the technology
-Obtain the latest and best technology solutions for the member schools
-Teams are dedicated to schools and bring technology with them to implement programs
-Teachers attend training workshops in the centers or at their schools
-Teachers are part of a regional technology educators network.

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Vacation Science Camp


Children gather for the holiday break Science Camp activities.  (left), Team leader, and students collecting plastic trash for examination, recycling, reuse and education.

“The participants went through the streets collecting waste plastic materials that are non-biodegradable. They carried the collected materials for recycling as best way of avoiding pollution.We found market dwellers burning trash including the plastics which perpetuates pollution. We did otherwise.”


Jiggers are small bugs that are in dry soil and dirt in homes and school yards.  The crawl into skin breaks in children’s feet and cause infections.  This year the Hands of Charity Vacation Science Camp visited  families affected by jiggers.

“Thanks a lot to sponsors,youths took time as prepared by teachers and facilitators to visit victims of jigger infestation in remote villages. They really felt for them. The objective was to teach our children to observe hygiene, keep a clean environment  and learn how to take care of others.They were really moved.”




Thank you New England Biolabs for funding this project and thank you  Bonaventure, Fred, Rose, Shallie, Nellie, Dorcas and all the others who made this activity possible for these students.

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