To extend learning beyond the classroom, Union’s Grade 5s enjoyed a day excursion to the Ganora Guest Farm and the small village of Nieu-Bethesda on Tuesday, 13 August.
This trip provides unique opportunities for the children to learn in a new environment and to make real world connections to the knowledge they’ve gained in class. Their day started bright and early with breakfast on the bus while en route to Nieu-Bethesda.
Upon arrival at Ganora, the children were split into two groups: boys and girls. The girls first visited the Fossil Museum, where they were taught about plant and animal fossils, including the fresh water fish fossils found in the Karoo. The fossilization process astounded many of the learners and they were also reminded of the differences between herbivores and carnivores, as they examined the fossil samples. While this was happening, the boys hiked to the Khoi-San caves with Henry Witbooi, better known as Punky. Punky entertained the children with his Khoi-San heritage stories and extensive rock art knowledge.
After the groups had swapped activities, everyone enjoyed a lovely lunch on the lawn and some free time. Next on the agenda was a visit to Nieu-Bethesda’s community artists to do some shopping.
Freddy Jacobs, aka “Die Goggaman”, taught all the children how to upcycle a can and a piece of wire to make a candle holder – an item which will most definitely be useful during load-shedding. In a heartwarming gesture, seven Grade 5s then showed compassion for a disabled artist and his two loyal dog companions, when they – of their own accord – bought and gave them gifts of water and food, including a dog bowl. It was really affecting to hear the learners reflect on the experience. Amber Bezuidenhout, one of the kindhearted learners who participated in the act of goodwill, described how she felt: “When we gave it to him, I started to feel a warm, tingly feeling and when I saw him smile, I just couldn’t stop smiling.”
The school extends its grateful thanks to all those who contributed to the success of this excursion.