Each morning we leave the hotel and turn into the busy morning traffic of Nairobi to make the half-hour drive to Agano Junior Academy. Our route takes us across the river and into Dandora slum area. Roads have not been repaired here in years and the tarmac is pot-holed every few feet. Traffic is intense with matatoos competing with lorries and hand-pulled carts and sometimes even a goat herd whose whole life is in the city. Stall keepers are bringing out their goods for sale. School children, dressed in uniforms that identify their school, make their way along the roadside to their local school, either private or public. We turn once again into the lane before Agano.
We put our hotel-made lunch boxes in Principal Grace’s office and greet each teacher with handshakes and ‘Jambo’ or ‘Sabal heri’ as they arrive. Some have been here since 6:30am because the children start arriving at that time. We always teach the first lesson and observe the second lesson. The Kenyan teacher stays in the classroom while we teach and takes notes in the exercise book we have given them, we do the same when the Kenyan teacher teaches. We alternate like this through the day. We’ll talk about what we saw each other do on our last day.
The morning is punctuated with a ten-minute break and later a fifteen-minute break. Lunch begins at 12:30 and lasts until 2:00pm. The teaching day concludes for us at 4:00pm and we climb into the Better World van exhausted, for the ride home. The narrow streets are more crowded now and traffic crawls through different neighbourhoods of the Dandora redevelopment area. There is not much redevelopment happening though. We feel the enormity of the challenge.