At the Aga Khan Academies, community service is an overarching and major facet of student education and experience. Incorporated into student life and the curriculum, community service extends the educational experience beyond the classroom, informing students of the real-world implications of their studies. Through community projects with local organisations and groups, students gain a sense of the interconnectedness of their education with the world around them. One example is the ‘STEM for Growth’ group at the Aga Khan Academy in Mombasa. The student group has partnered to bring Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) learnings to students at the local, government-run, Mbaraki Girls Primary School, developing hands-on experiments for the students they work with to enhance their understanding of science-related topics – whilst also helping the students increase their self-confidence and public speaking skills.
As part of the International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum taught at the Academies, students work with local community partners for their Community, Action and Service (CAS) projects. Here, Aga Khan Academy Mombasa students are demonstrating a chemistry experiment, whilst visiting Mbaraki Girls Primary School for a science-focused community project.
‘STEM for Growth’, a community service group at the Aga Khan Academy Mombasa comprising of students aged 16-17 years, works with students at Mbaraki Girls Primary School to broaden their understanding of science-related topics. Above, Academy students are demonstrating how chemical reactions occur with mints and soda.
Curriculum projects allow Academies students to share their Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) skills with other educational institutions within the local community. The Academies students develop science-related lesson plans for the students they work with based upon their previous classroom learnings within the Academy.
In addition to teaching, the Academy students within the ‘STEM for Growth’ group also work with students in the local community to help increase their self-confidence and public speaking skills. Above, a student from Mbaraki Girls Primary School is articulating the hypothesis and results of their completed chemistry experiment.
Photo credit: AKDN/Lucas Cuervo Moura