Destination: Burkina Faso

Destination: Ouagadougou” was the text written on the luggage labels of the 19 teachers from Hungary, Austria, Slovenia, Basque Country and Italy who took part in the exchange visit in Burkina Faso.

From 12th to 18th November 2016, the teachers had the possibility to visit 3 schools that are actively working in the EAThink project in Burkina Faso. In particular, they went to the Lycée Technique Industriel et Commercial de Ouagadougou where they have been welcomed by the director of the school. They had the possibility to discuss with some of the school’s teachers about the Burkinabe school system, to visit the school labs, to attend a class (math course) and to meet the EAThink school focal point and the EAThink citizen journalism team. In a panel discussion, the Burkinabe teachers presented the activities realised so far (as the citizen journalism training) and the ones scheduled for the next year. In fact, the Lycée Technique is planning to realise a local food competition in the next months that will engage the students in the selection of local and sustainable ingredients for the preparation of traditional Burkinabe food.

The visit exchange continued in Ouahigouya, where the teachers visited the Lycée Municipal. Here the topic chosen by the Burkinabe teachers was the local food and the methodologies they used to deal with global learning in their school. The Burkinabe teachers presented some of the lessons they usually realised in their classes, for example working on the nutritional quality of food and on the difference in quality and varieties between local rice and imported rice. The European teachers had the possibility to ask questions and to contribute to the debate describing some of their activities they have realised in their schools.

The third school scheduled for the visit was the Lycée provincial de Zondoma à Gourcy. Here, the Burkinabe students provided a presentation of all the activities they have realised and a video of the interviews they have conducted at the local market about the origins of vegetables, cereals, legumes and fruits. Afterwards, the Burkinabe teachers organised a debate on one of the issue faced by global learning: the pollution. A teacher introduced the topic and analysed the differences between pollution in Africa and in Europe, what are the main causes in a continent and in the other, what are the related effects and what are the effects of climate change on agriculture. The European teachers actively took part in the debate.

Some other visits have been organised to make the European teachers more aware of and directly in contact with Burkinabe local products and their transformation, local school system and social organisations.

In particular, teachers visited the AFBO association des femmes de Ouhaigouya that works on women rights. Their specific focus is female literacy in Burkina, especially in rural areas. In order to allow the primary teachers to have some information about the primary school system in Burkina Faso, the group also visited a primary school in Gourcy. The European group visited also an association working in the transformation of local food: the “Union Wendwaoga des étuveuses de riz de Mogtédo“, where they had the chance to see the whole process of production and transformation of local rice, from paddy rice to white rice, and to attend a plenary with the members of the association for discovering the rice production and consumption system in Burkina Faso. Another typical, local product is the karité butter. The teachers visited Karibel, an association working in the transformation of karité. Here the teachers discovered that the karité butter is normally eaten and is one of the main ingredients of the local cuisine.

 

 

 

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The exchange visit ended with a final workshop.

 

After the visit of the burkinabé schools and the presentation of all the activities realised within EAThink project in Burkina Faso, the workshop opened with the presentations of the activities realised in schools by the European teachers.

 

 

Then, an Open space session has been organised. It was dedicated to the outlooks and the ideas to be developed at schools in the next months. Teachers proposed many topics as the starting point for working in groups.

Each group had to discuss and define the topic, create one or more activity and define how to share the outputs.

After the Open space session, 5 groups have been created around these topics:
 

“Water and food in climate changing time”

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This group planned to work on the amount of water that people need in agriculture in the different countries, starting from some practical examples: how much water do we need to cultivate 1kg of maize, beef meat, potatoes and rice?

A second activity that this group decided to develop is to create a storytelling about the relation students have with water from the morning to the night in their countries. They will share their outputs via email, Instagram and  the EAThink blog.

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“School connections”

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This group planned to work on the amount of water that people need in agriculture in the different countries, starting from some practical examples: how much water do we need to cultivate 1kg of maize, beef meat, potatoes and rice?

A second activity that this group decided to develop is to create a storytelling about the relation that the students have with water from the morning to the night in the different countries. They will share their outputs via email, Instagram and the EAThink blog.

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“Outdoor Classroom and schools gardens”

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This group focused on school gardens and on all the steps, the advantages and the best practices to keep in mind in the implementation of this activity. The idea of this group is to valorise and to use the garden as a place for teaching different subjects, making maximum use of all his potential.

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 “Food quality”

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This group focused on food quality and created 3 practical activities to exchange information, share experiences and start connecting students from different schools and countries. In the next months they will work on: 1) collecting 10 photos representing eating habits, trying to answer to the “w questions”: what, where, when, who. 2) Defining and explaining 3 major issues concerning food in their countries, by using pictures and short texts. 3) Analysing the impact of food consumption on the environment. They planned to share the materials and outputs via mail and to share their experience on the EAThink blog.

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“Local food and seeds”

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This group focused on the importance of eating local and valorising local food. The activities they wanted to develop are: school gardening, raising awareness activities, visiting local producers, organising a cooking competition, a “cooking day” and a special day dedicated to local food. They will take pictures and share their experiences through the Facebook Page and the EAThink blog. The Burkinabe high school in Ouahigouya has already started this activity organising the EAThink Day and sharing this experience in their Facebook profile, through some blog post on the EAThink French Blog and through an album on Flickr.

 

ideien-elkartrukea-3 ideien-elkartrukea-1The burkinabe week ended with a lot of enthusiasm and the promise of going on, working together and collaborating, valorizing this good opportunity of meeting each other in person offered by this visit exchange.

 
 

Written by Viviana Brun, CISV

Photo gallery:
https://flic.kr/s/aHskM1AXz4

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