Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Celebrating Museum and Africa Month with Albany!

By Linda Dyani and Lindinxiwa Mahlasela

Albany museum’s mobile unit embarked on a road show to celebrate museums and Africa month. Jauka Hall in Port Alfred was the first stop on Tuesday, 26 May 2015. In a matter of minutes the hall was turned into a “museum” displaying artefacts from Invertebrates, history, anthropology, archaeology, fossil collections. Experienced museum officials with expertise in various fields manned the stalls and interacted with approximately 300 learners from Port Alfred primary, Kuyasa and Nomzamo Secondary schools.
Africa day
Facilitator, Lindi Mahlasela asked learners their meaning of Africa Day. He confronted them with some difficult questions that included; how many countries make up the African continent?, Who are the presidents of Mali, Malawi, Kenya, Congo, etc? He asked them about leading musicians and artists in the continent. When answers were not forthcoming he asked them who the president of the United States is. A resounding “Barack Obama” was echoed. By this time a point was driven “knowing about other countries and peoples of the African continent will eliminate prejudices that led to xenophobia and promote togetherness and social cohesion”.
Participant’s views
Ms Nxawe, an English teacher from Nomzamo High School who accompanied learners thought the event was a “worthwhile exercise”. She strongly believes that activities like these go a long way in motivating learners as they broaden their career choices. Additionally, Ms Nxawe promised to take her learners to Albany museum to see, touch and smell collections.
Two grade 11 learners from Kuyasa were surprised to learn that museums are places where highly qualified people could pursue careers and that IT experts, finance administrators, also have a place at. Learning about insects was something that the two girls never thought was a career.
A grade 9 learner from Port Alfred Primary said he wanted to study Paleontology at Rhodes University after finishing grade 12, whilst Simphiwe Mxube, a grade 10 pupil from Kuyasa Combined School wanted to explore the field of Archaeology.

Clearly, the visit had a positive effect on learners and Albany museum wishes them success in their endeavors.

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