girls working in computer lab

Back To School!

Cambridge Exam Results Are In! 

In The Last Report We Talked About The Studious Standard Seven Class, And All Their Hard Work They Spent Preparing And Taking Their Exams.  The Results Are In – And All That Work Paid Off!  All The Students All Did Really Well, With The Whole Class Average Higher Than ‘Good’ In All Subjects. The Class Average For Mathematics Was 3.1, Science Was 4.0, And English 3.3. Each Section Is Based On A Score Of 0-6, With 6 Being Excellent, 3 Good, And 0 Poor.  Congratulations Standard Seven!

Busy Holiday ‘Break’

While the children were away for the holidays, the teachers and headmaster worked very hard getting ready for the new term. Construction was finished on the third building, the computer lab was set up, the library improved, the teachers went through computer training, and a new teacher was hired and trained.

Computer Lab Is Up and Running!

After receiving electricity last term, the school was able to set up the computer lab, for a second time. The computers were put into storage in 2010 when the school moved into their new location, without power. The school has done very well in the past three years – slowly finishing the classroom blocks, playground, bathrooms, office, library and computer lab.  Now that electricity is installed, the computers were taken out of storage and set up.

Unfortunately, only 12 of the computers are working right now.  The other 5 will not boot up, and have a problem with the capacitors.  BeeHive has found a way around this problem – when classes use the computers, they split up into two groups – half use the library, the other half the computers, then the students swap. There is plenty of space for more computers in the lab, so the school hopes to have more working ones soon!

The teachers did computer training over the holidays. Some of the newer teachers who started after 2010, when the computer lab got put away, had never used a computer, and there were some very funny moments in training!!

The children love using them.  They also have not spent much (if any) time using a computer, so they are enjoying learning and practicing their skills on them.

Library is Looking Good!

The library at BeeHive School was designed with reading in mind.  Big windows bring in natural light, and it is so inviting everyone wants to walk in, pick up a book, and read. The children are very good at following rules – one rule is the library is a quiet zone – it is amazing how quiet students can be when they are all deeply enthralled in books! Loads of shelves were kindly donated by the building company SR Nicholas (the company building reserve bank and Shoprite in Mzuzu). They were installed during the term break. The only thing a bit lacking are the books. BeeHive has quite a good collection, but more books are needed.

Construction

There are plans to build a student hall and entrance to the school.  Six trips of sand were brought to the school, and the school is in the process of finding a way to get more bricks.

Welcoming The New School Year

The good news about the exams and the improvements over the summer have helped the succesful start of a new term. This term welcomes 172 students and one new teacher. The teacher will teach Standard 7. This is great news for the headmaster, who has been teaching this class and running the school at the same time.  The headmaster is still going to teach Standard 7 English, and French to the whole school, but is excited to focus on administration and school development.

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new bookshelves in new library
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new library books
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students reading quietly
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old computer lab in need of new computers
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students using educational software in the computer lab

Cambridge Students Hard At Work

Standard 7 – Work Hard Play Hard

The eldest students at the school know how to work hard and play hard!

University of Cambridge International Exam
BeeHive School’s Standard 7 class takes the Cambridge International Exam every May.  This exam covers science (biology, chemistry, physics, and scientific enquiry), math (geometry and measure, handling data, and number) and English (reading, usage and writing).  Each section is based on a score of 0-6, with 6 being excellent, 3 good, and 0 poor.

This exam is important for teachers and students alike, for it not only gives the the students and teachers feedback as to what the children know, but their results will help them get a place in a secondary school after they graduate from BeeHive School.

(see last year’s report “BeeHive School Finishes The Term with Triumph” for results from last years class!)

Studious Standard Seven
Standard 7, the highest level at BeeHive, did a lot of preparing for the University of Cambridge International Exam.  All their hard work on their science experiments, maths homework, essays, reports, reading assignments, and practice tests was about to pay off. The students were prepared!  At the beginning of May, we pulled the desks apart to make individual work stations, and the students took the multiple day examination.

We hope they did well – the results come out in July!

Standard Seven – Hadouken Style!
Now that the exams are complete, the class has a bit of down time for some fun.  They were allowed to come to school in regular clothes (no uniform day!), their teacher took a camera, and they had a ‘Hadouken’ photo shoot!  The photos were very popular among the younger children at the school!

Great Job Standard 7!!!

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Children race to the finish line while their classmates cheer them on.

BeeHive School Finishes The Term with Triumph

I can’t believe it’s already time for our next update!  BeeHive School is doing great – the yearly “Sports Day” was a smashing success and the students did just as well in their Cambridge International Exams.
 
Sports Day is an end-of-term tradition for the school.  The school is broken into four “houses” or teams that compete for the House Cup – a giant trophy!  BeeHive’s Lions, Tigers, Cheetahs and Leopards strive to outperform their peers in this good-natured competition through sporting events, mental math matches, spelling competitions, acts of kindness, good manners and class participation.  During the last week of term, the houses competed in Sports Day.  Events in jump rope, soccer, netball, three legged, potato sack and running races allowed the students (and teachers!) to each points for their houses.  The Lions beat out the others, for the third straight year.

Another highlight of the last week of school was the end of term assembly where the new class captains were announced, Academic Achievement presents were awarded, and the House Cup was presented to the Lions.

The students may have left the school in early July, but the excitement did not end.  The results for the Standard 7 class came a few weeks later.  Standard 7, the most advanced grade at the school (and also the smallest) took the University of Cambridge International Exam.  The exam covers science (biology, chemistry, physics, and scientific enquiry), math (geometry and measure, handling data, and number) and English (reading, usage and writing).  Each section is based on a score of 0-6, with 6 being excellent, 3 good, and 0 poor.

Students, parents and teachers were all thrilled with the results.  The class got an average score of 4.1 for science, 4.8 for English, and 3 for math.  It’s nice to see the hard work of everyone pay off in a quantifiable way.

The school is looking forward to another great term ahead!  We’ll be in touch with more exciting updates!
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Perlton Edwin and Kenneth Malema

A Bright & Cheerful Holiday Newsletter

Dear BeeHive Community,

BeeHive wishes you a Happy Holiday Season and a Happy Thanksgiving to those in the US.
Thank you for your past support and encouragement.  This newsletter has some fun updates – don’t miss the short video that Katy put together! – we think you will find it inspiring and by the end you’ll have a smile on your face.
Malawi has had a rough 2011.  In July, the UK cut aid to the country after a disagreement with Malawi’s government.  This lead to tragic riots in the capital and also in Mzuzu, which ended with 98 serious injuries and 18 people dead.  Although BeeHive students were exposed to the rioting and had family and friends affected by the riots – we were very fortunate that none of them were physically injured.  In fact, BeeHive students have continued to flourish despite the chaos around them.
All the students at BeeHive School received high marks in their exams this year.  Two students did exceptionally well.  Perlton Edwin and Kenneth Malema got the highest and second highest grades in the whole of Malawi for the Cambridge Primary exams.  These exams test their knowledge of English, math, and science, and ensure that they are ready to move onto secondary school.  Perlton and Kenneth attended the Cambridge Outstanding Learners Achievement Awards, at Bedir School in Blantyre, to receive their awards.  This photo shows Perlton receiving his award from the Minister for Education, Science and Technology, and the British Council Regional Director for Southern Africa.
Over in the US, we have been raising funds to help finish the construction of the school.  During the summer, BeeHive volunteers Katy Harrison and Abe Downey camped and rode their tandem bike 3,000 kilometers across Europe, from Budapest to Holland, while raising awareness and funds for the school.
BeeHive School is still part of the internationally recognized Global Giving.  In order to partner with them, we undergo rigorous compliance checks, including site visits from Global Giving representatives to monitor progress and make sure that we stay true to our goals.  Global Giving has also been a great site to raise awareness and get others involved in the school.  For the holidays we are part of their ‘Gifts for Good’ campaign.
When you donate $75 to the school through this program, you will receive a hand-made necklace made with African beads as a thank you (for more info please contact:info@beehiveschool.com).  We have commissioned a US artist, Casey Hunt, to make these beautiful necklaces.  Casey is inspired by nature and uses African beads made from glass, wood, shells, pearls or stone. Each necklace is unique and has sterling silver clasps.  All funds raised will go to completing the the last section of the school including the library and assembly hall.
Construction is progressing quickly with only 1/3 left to go.  The classrooms and some toilets were finished earlier this year, allowing students to attend class in the new buildings.  In August the playground was complete, and is of course hugely popular.  The children love the slide, climbing gym, swings and even a sand box – a rare luxury in Malawi.  You can check out the progress yourself in this video:
http://beehiveschool.smugmug.com/gallery/19959116_RrLCZK#1598826543_tSFgs7G-A-LB
 
In October the school held ‘Open Day’ where parents got to go to school with their children.  Parents sat in class, had snacks at break-time, then attended a meeting and questions.  Niall, the founder and principal, said it was a fantastic day with very encouraging feedback from the parents.  These events help parents engage more actively in their children’s education.  Also, during Open Day the PTA raised 14,000 Kwacha ($85 USD).  In a country where a dinner at a very nice restaurant is $2 USD, this is a very significant contribution!

We have also been working with the Apricot Project, a group starting a new way to micro-finance scholarships for children around the world.  They are using BeeHive School as one of their partners while they test out their beta website and get the kinks ironed out.  We hope to have a few BeeHive students on scholarships from the Apricot Project soon.  Find out more about the Apricot Project here:

http://www.facebook.com/apricotproject?sk=info

Thank you again for donating to BeeHive School and continue to stay in touch. Your involvement has been very important in making BeeHive what it is today.

On behalf of BeeHive School,

Eva and Katy


The BeeHive School Website:
www.beehiveschool.com

Find us on Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/BeeHiveSchool

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xY4ilS1Gx1c

Partners with ASAP Africa
http://www.asapafrica.org/

US Postal Address:
Beehive School Building Fund c/o Katy Harrison
833 Sonia Way
Mountain View CA 94040
USA

Malawi Postal Address:
Beehive School
PO Box 831
Mzuzu
MALAWI

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Much Progress and Great News From BeeHive!

We have lots of good news to report from BeeHive School!

First off, along with four other schools in Malawi, BeeHive entered the “British Council Exams” and all of BeeHive’s students passed with flying colors! In fact, BeeHive’s students did the very best, beating out every other school in Malawi. BeeHive prepares their students to compete on an international level.

Niall Dorey, BeeHive’s founder, director, teacher, and handy-man, was lucky enough to host his old University friends that came to support Niall and BeeHive through their toughest times. Niall had a lovely time and is looking forward to their next visit.

Now for some really big and exciting news – The second of three planned sections of the new school are now complete and BeeHive is hoping to be back up to 150 students! Niall has promised to send photos and asks everyone to keep sending good thoughts across the pond.

For more photos of the construction progress, please check out our website: http://photos.beehiveschool.com/Other/construction/12083217_M66ta#858324315_nNnMx

and here: http://www.facebook.com/BeeHiveSchool?v=photos

Stephen and Maureen Dorey, BeeHive’s biggest champions (and Niall’s parents) organized a “Scottish Dance” fundraiser with the assistance of their daughter, Claire. It was an incredible success! They raised £470 for Beehive School, which will go to the last of three sections for the new school! Thank you to all those lively spirits who kicked up their heals and really got the party going! Thanks on behalf of every BeeHive supporter for your generosity and kindness!

And last, but definitely not least, the Ministry of Education performed another inspection of the new buildings and BeeHive passed with flying colors – in fact, the inspector said that Beehive was a model structure and that they would be sending more people to visit to see what a well-built and safe school should look like. Niall and BeeHive are finally able to breathe easier knowing the the school is up-to-code.

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