Harnessing Knowledge

Harnessing Knowledge

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Bringing books to life is not easy, especially when competing with today’s technology. However, students in English 9D participated in several activities for The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, the true story of fourteen-year-old William Kamkwamba who brought electricity and hope to his family, village, and country.

In addition to writing about the cause and effects of the famine in the book, students had a lively video/audio chat with Anna Brettmann, a former UNL Alum and Mrs. Coady’s niece, who is currently serving a two-year stint with the Peace Corps in Zambia, a country in southern Africa which shares its eastern border with Malawi, the country where the story takes place. During the chat, students got to ask Brettmann questions about the food, culture, and conditions she has experienced. 

After learning about the schools’ poor conditions and lack of supplies, both from the book and the chat with Brettmann, students decided to collect items and send them to the village schools. Over the course of two weeks, students collected enough funds and school supplies to fill seven large boxes, which included everything from rulers and protractors to notebooks and stickers.

To finish off the unit, the 9th graders read the children’s version of Kamkwamba’s story to various elementary classrooms and helped them build colorful windmills of their own.

For more pictures of these activities, check out the Google album linked HERE.



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