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CAS News - "Hive"

CAS NEWS

THE IB1 CLASS PRESENTS “HIVE”

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In line with the tradition of community service ever so prevalent in the school, as well as the CAS projects held by every IB1 class, the IB Class of 2018 officially announces the commencement of its project, HIVE. Months of discussion, design and planning have gone into choosing a meaningful name, logo and focus for the project, and we are excited to share our work with you. Taking inspiration from bee colonies, the class believes in the power of concerted efforts, to achieve a common goal, thus the name “HIVE.”

Mampong School for the Deaf and Akropong School for the Blind will be the beneficiaries of the funds raised, with our intervention focused on Sustainable Development Goals Four(quality education) and Six(clean water and sanitation). Special needs schools, especially the two chosen for our project, play very pivotal roles in Ghana’s educational system; however, the stigma associated with and little attention given to people with special needs have culminated in a slow deterioration of the schools’ facilities as well as poor living and learning conditions. HIVE represents our contribution to making life easier and more pleasant for people with needs that should be accommodated.

On Saturday, January 14th all IB students will be visiting the Akropong school for the Blind and the Mampong School for the Deaf, the target institutions for our fundraiser this year. The purpose is to give our students a first-hand exposure to the conditions of the school and their students to enable them relate well to the purpose of the fundraiser. They will also carry out a clean-up exercise and a need assessment survey to help us narrow down on exactly how we can help/ assist these institutions in terms of education and sanitation as per our target SDG.

This year, the organization of year group community service projects has taken on a new form. In place of committees and two overall heads, teams with sub-divisions have been introduced, each with their own coordinators and patrons. Media (with sub-teams of Writing & Documentation, Photography, Videography and Graphic Design), Social Impact, Event Organizers (Logistics, Food and Drinks and Entertainment making up sub-teams) and Finance constitute the various teams; this structure ensures maximum input of each class member and a heightened sense of dedication and drive for utmost success.  Although the focus remains on HIVE, some members of the class will work on other community service projects started by previous year groups to ensure their continuity.

The underlying themes of our CAS experience as a class are sustainability, and making an impact powerful enough to resonate years after our departure from the school community. We humbly request the support of the entire school body as we engage in and present exciting activities geared at helping well-deserving members of our society.

Eyram Adzo Agbe and Kyna Fafa Mensah

Writing & Documentation Team

HIVE Project

Inaugural Lecture at the University of Ghana

On Thursday, September 15, 2016 a group of 57 IB1 and IB2 students and seven staff members had the opportunity to witness Professor Naa Ayikailey Adamafio, B.Sc. (Hons) Biochemistry with Chemistry (University of Ghana), Ph.D Biochemistry (Monash University) deliver her Inaugural Lecture on the topic “Ghana’s Biomass Imperative: Surmounting the Biochemical Barriers”.

After short initial hiccups with finding a bus driver who would take us to East Legon, the group set off in good spirits. Everybody managed to find a seat on the bus and the exact number of students coming with was determined without fail.IB1 group2 news

We arrived well on time and were seated in two different blocks, IB1s and IB2s, each group sitting with some teachers.

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The programme started with a procession of members of the University, led by dancers accompanied by a group of drum players. After two short introductory speeches, Professor Adamafio then embarked on her lecture, which addressed ways in which Science seeks to develop solutions both for environmental (biomass waste reduction) and economic (producing affordable animal feed to raise the percentage of national meat production) issues in Ghana. The lecture was most interesting, held in layman’s speech, clear and concise.

Teachers were happy to see their students following the lecture attentively since the topic is of great relevance for IB Biology and Chemistry students.

After the lecture the SOS-HGIC group was introduced to the audience as one of three student groups who had been invited and honoured the invitation. Before returning to Tema there was some time to enjoy refreshments and talk to other guests. Some of our students used the occasion to speak to Professor Naa Ayikailey Adamafio and thank her for the interesting evening.

The journey home went smoothly and teachers were full of praise for a well-behaved group of students, promising to take them on many more trips should the occasion arise.

IG1 ENGLISH LANGUAGE TRIP

Alas! The day for the long awaited English language trip to Prampram had arrived. The excitement in the air was palpable, as students were eager to put into practice, everything that had been taught in the weeks leading to this trip, such as sentence types and descriptive writing. We boarded the buses at 9:00 am and set off in high spirits for our destination. We passed by clusters of lush looking undergrowth, that sported a lovely green colour ,while enjoying a smooth ride since the roads were in good condition, as compared to the roads in other parts in Ghana. 

We arrived at our destination at 10:45 am and we were thrown into a state of incredulousness, as the scenery that greeted us was in sharp contrast to what we had observed earlier. Once we got down from the bus, the pungent smell of decomposing fish hit us squarely in the face and it was a very odious smell. We were instructed by our English tutors to start observing and describing the scene before us, as measures were being put in place to organize the serving of our snacks. After the snacks were served which consisted of a sausage roll or tuna sandwich if you preferred that instead and “kalyppo”, eating became an even bigger problem, as large flies hovered around us, touching parts of our food and making us lose our appetite. This was very frustrating, as most people were really hungry, considering the fact that the walk to school drained our very life force and we hadn’t had a meal after this. 

After consuming what was left of the snacks, we grabbed our books and pens and walked away from the coconut trees where we were stationed, towards the beach. The smell of human waste was unmistakable, as we walked closer to the beach and as if to emphasize its presence, the smell got stronger as we approached the seashore. The shores of the beach were lined with plastic waste and black rocks covered in moss, helping to control the rush of too much water unto the land. Wooden canoes stood in neat rows on the shore and were painted with oil paint and held interesting inscriptions, most of which were in the Twi and Ga languages. canoesNaked children scurried about with no care in the world. Some lay on the seashore and ended up getting covered with sand, while others took a swim in the murky waters as small waves continuously crashed over their heads and tossed them to and fro. Others decided to perform daredevil tricks, such as standing at the stern of the canoe and jumping to the down to the blanket of sand that lay below. Although it was refreshing to see them having fun, it was also depressing to see children of such ages not being in school ,but rather roaming the seashore without supervision and engaging in all sorts of dangerous acts.

Walking along the beach was stressful, as every area of land was covered in sand, requiring for us to use extra force in taking our calculated steps to avoid falling into the pools of water that lay all around. At this point, we were still penning down everything we had observed and watched with interest as a boy used a plank of wood as a makeshift surfing board. Although it was unsuccessful, it was still a very creative option that was explored. We walked around most parts of the beach and wrote descriptions to best fit our observations during the time there, with the help of our committed English tutors. We finished our beach exploration at around 2:00 pm and then boarded the bus for our return trip. We had a stopover at a local eatery, near a beach for our lunch which consisted of jollof rice, grilled chicken and gravy, which had been prepared by the school. It was a truly sumptuous meal. After the meal, we relaxed a little and took pictures on the trending social media snapchat and engaged in lively conversations with our classmates and our tutors. pram2

Sometime after this, we boarded the bus for our return to Tema to be thrown back into the HGIC life of stress and hard work, which we are getting accustomed to. Although it was a welcome change to be out of the confines of the HGIC environment, we still recognized the importance of the schooling experience in its entirety and were partly glad to be back to our second home.

Special thanks to the members of the English department for the initiative taken to enable us test our improving writing skills and utilize our senses, in a bid to pen down works that enable readers to feel every emotion or thought we would like to convey. Many thanks to Mr. Gogovi, Mrs. Achamfuo- Yeboah, Mr. Darko, Mrs. Deborah Sampson, Mr. Essigyan and Ms. De-Graft Hanson for accompanying us on the trip and guiding us on how to describe the scenes before us. We have learnt a great deal from this trip, the salient lesson being one of gratitude, since seeing all those children roaming the area made us think back on all the things we have which we take for granted. It is our hope that we will work to obtain knowledge in the service of Africa to eradicate poverty in our blessed continent. It is our greatest desire that we always remember to be mindful of all in our community. Thanks to our parents for their sacrifices. We appreciate every one of them.

ICERDA 2016 Conference Visit to SOS-Hermann Gmeiner International College

On Wednesday 5th October a group of 20 delegates of the ICERDA 2016 Conference visited SOS-HGIC. They were given a tour of the college premises by members of the Senior Management Team and then had a meeting with Heads of Departments and SMT to learn about SOS-HGIC’s history and find out more about some aspects about the work that is being done here and how parts of what we are doing at SOS-HGIC can be used in Public Education.

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ICERDA is an academic research partnership, which was established between the University of Sussex, UK and the University of Ghana, Accra in 2015. The goal was to create a unique space for new and established education researchers and practitioners to disseminate research that addresses and develops critical discourses on education for development in Africa.

The theme of this year’s conference is: “Towards a Vision of Education for Sustainable Development in Africa”. The goal of this year’s conference is to promote meaningful and equitable progress in education for sustainable development, informed by the experience of Education for All and responsive to the aspirations of the next generation of learners.

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Our College Prospects

COUNSELLING NEWS

                                               collegevisits1IB2 and IB1 students with Admissions Officers from Cornell, Columbia, Princeton and Dartmouth

Our College Prospects

We are at the time of the year where IB2s are currently undergoing the process of selecting and applying to the places they would like to spend the next four years of their life in. This point in the academic year is all about making the right decisions and the right plans and on Monday, the 5th of September, four of the most prestigious universities in the US visited us to help us make these important choices.

Admissions officers from Cornell, Columbia, Princeton and Dartmouth, four of the eight ivy league schools, made their way into the Margaret Nkrumah Hall at 1pm and were almost immediately overwhelmed by students eager to ask them questions. For some, it was a chance to have their names engraved in the minds of these important people for future reference. Believe it or not, it has worked before. The forum began with a question session where people were given the chance to clarify certain misconceptions they had about work opportunities in the United States, the number of international students admitted per school and the diversity of resources available.


It was also a chance for these four schools to attract as many applicants as possible and so each admissions officer was on their A-game. The jovial admissions officer from Cornell enticed us with

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The four Admissions Officers

his talk of the vibrant college community, hi-tech facilities and top-notch engineering and computer science courses. Cornell prides itself in its agricultural research and courses and even has its own cow farm where they milk them and make ice cream. This was a subject of great interest to students.

Columbia was next to impress. The charismatic admissions officer easily charmed students with facts such as Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners being part of the faculty and available for interactions and the close proximity to famous New York City were dreams can come to life. Columbia trains students to be global leaders and be aware of issues that affect humanity as a whole.

Dartmouth gained students’ interest with stories about their unconventional approach to student – teacher relations, a place where a dinner appointment might lead to teachers getting to know their students better and teach them better. The landscape and atmosphere was also a deciding factor for those who love the outdoors and nature. Dartmouth engages in canoeing, rock climbing and other fun activities that help students get in touch with nature.

The last and certainly not the least school to present was Princeton. Known as a major research institute, Princeton is the 4th oldest university in the US. The advantage this brings is, just like Columbia, they have an abundance of international prize-winners available to teach and advise students. What Princeton emphasised on though was their great generosity in giving financial aid to students who apply, regardless of their economic or geographical situation. For many students who get admitted to Princeton, this is the chance to walk out with a degree and loan-free by the end of the four years.

The forum that took place opened up so many possibilities for students and stimulated their dreams, imagination and determination. With the future so close at hand and tensions running high, what is most advisable to do is to calm down and know your goals. However, we are never alone. The advantage of being a student in SOS is that there is always someone to help, in this case the guidance counsellors and with these fantastic opportunities they are bringing us, such as this forum we got a chance to participate in, we will be okay.

Anabel Kubabom, IB2

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SOS-HGIC students enquiring about admission at University of Toronto

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UBCrepresentative giving advice about admission to UBC

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