Quake victims say thanks to Sunderland school for help

Grangetown Primary Pupils enjoy a visit from Nepalese teachers.
Grangetown Primary Pupils enjoy a visit from Nepalese teachers.
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Teachers from an earthquake-hit school in Nepal said ‘thank you’ in person to Sunderland youngsters.

Staff, children and parents at Grangetown Primary School managed to raise more than £1,500 for their partner school, Traibidya Shikshhya Sadan Primary, in Kathmandu, when it was hit by devastating earthquakes in April last year.

Grangetown Primary Pupils enjoy a visit from Nepalese teachers.

Grangetown Primary Pupils enjoy a visit from Nepalese teachers.

Now, Grangetown Primary has welcomed some visiting teachers from the school and the children enjoyed a week of cultural activities culminating in a stunning dance performance.

Grangetown Primary School and Traibidya Primary have been partnered for four years, thanks to the British Council’s Connecting Classrooms initiative.

Joint teacher visits have taken place, and three Grangetown teachers have visited Nepal so far, with a further two staff set to visit at Easter.

It was the turn of the Traibidya staff, headteacher Sangeeta Shrestha and teacher Apekshya Rayamajhi, to visit Grangetown.

During their week at Grangetown, Sangeeta and Apekshya taught the children about Nepali culture, showed them how to cook ‘momo’ (dumplings) and taught a group of children a traditional dance.

They also led an assembly for the whole school, in which they talked about how Nepal, and their school, had set about recovering from the devastation caused by the April 2015 earthquakes.

The two earthquakes destroyed part of their school, and Grangetown at that point organised a range of fundraising activities, leading to the incredible sum of over £1500 being donated.

The case was used to pay for vital repairs to the school and for improvements to the playground.

Grangetown headteacher, Les McAnaney, said international links such as this one are vital for the development of pupils.

He said: “Weeks like this widen the children’s horizons and teach them about other cultures in an engaging and fun way, and the lessons last a lifetime.

“For the children, it was the chance to perform in assembly which stood out.”

Katie Butler, a Year 5 pupil at the Spelterworks Road school, enjoyed the visit.

She said: “We got to wear Nepali costumes, and it was thrilling to not only learn the dance, but to perform it in front of the whole school.”

At Easter, two Grangeown teachers will jet off to Kathmandu, and will use their holidays to lead teacher training sessions for Nepali teachers.