What do ostriches, pilots, water, and the heart all have in common? They are all topics our students have chosen for their summer independent research projects! Each girl has chosen a subject they will study in-depth throughout the summer, and our wonderful volunteers have been guiding them in the process. For Kindergarten and First Graders, the topics are diverse, thought-provoking, and incredibly cute. Animals are the clear favorite, ranging from lions and elephants to cows and chickens. Many are studying the environment – weather, soil, flowers, and plants. From there the topics get more abstract and zany.
Throughout the summer, students have been exploring their topics in creative and innovative ways. Students interested in pilots have been learning about flight with paper airplanes. Our animal researchers have been studying “Kaka”, the school's new kitten that will be keeping mice away from our school. Our little herbologists have been spending time in our sustainable vegetable garden, learning about the type of plants we grow as part of our feeding program.
These research projects are an essential part of the Kibera School's innovative model. By allowing the girls to explore topics on their own, we cultivate students that take an active role in their own education. Instead of forcing them to memorize requisite facts, we allow them to study what they want, which leads them to ask relevant questions about the world around them and think critically. It's also just incredibly fun!