Monthly Archives: March 2014

Ikkapalama School Trip

Posted on by Mr Jayasinghe

We were very happy to organise a two-day trip for this rural school where some of our sponsorship students are studying.

We always leave very early in the morning so we can do as much as possible and therefore the students were picked up at 4:45am before they came to collect us from the SRI office.

First we drove to Ella Waterfalls, which is the beginning of the tea country and is much cooler than Tissa.

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Then we drove to Demodora railway station, which was built during the English period and had some breakfast.

The students were very excited because only eight of the 72 on the trip had been on a train before.

They observed a nine arch bridge and were very happy every time we went through a tunnel.

After this train trip we had our lunch at Nuwara Eliya, which is the capital of the tea country.

Then we spent the afternoon doing many environmental things.

We observed the plant life at the botanical gardens in Peradeniya and we made a short stop at the Ramboda Waterfalls.

Finally we reached Kandy and visited the famous temple where Buddha’s tooth is worshipped. This was also the first time many of the students had visited it.

We stayed in the temple overnight and enjoyed lots of singing.

The next morning we drove to Dehiwala zoological gardens near Colombo. Here the students studied animal diversity, food habits, social behaviour and environmental protection.

We had our lunch at Beira Lake in the middle of Colombo and played some group games on Galle Face Beach, which is a lovely area of the capital by the sea.

We did not leave Colombo until 6pm so it was a long drive back to Tissa and we did arrive home until 2:45am.

Teacher Training at Mahasenpura Community Computer Centre

Posted on by Mr Tharindu

Trainers from the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT) have returned to the MCCC to train government teachers how to create a school’s website.

Late last year, we held a two-day training course for about 30 government teachers, but we soon realised we could need to do a follow-up session as most had no prior experience with web design.DSCN3424[1]

So we arranged a second two-day session in March with trainers from SLIIT  leading the first day, while myself and Mr Hasitha, the IT teacher from Uda Mattala School, led the second day.

On day one, we created a generic website as a template for the teachers and then on the second day we helped each teacher to create a basic structure for their individual schools.

SRI will now host these websites for the next few months while we apply for them to be accepted under a national programme funded by the Department of Education.

We will also now launch a competition among the schools to create a schools website, with each teacher forming a team among their pupils.

We hope to select the best websites early in the autumn, with the MCCC teachers and myself on hand to offer each school any guidance they need.

Winners will be selected by SRI, SLIIT and the sponsor Barclays Bank which is kindly funding the entire programme.

Selected schools will either receive free internet access and/or equipment.

 

Mr Somasiri’s Retirement

Posted on by Jackie

One of our two security guards has retired from the Mahasenpura Community Computer Centre (MCCC).Image 6

It was with some sadness that we said “goodbye” to Mr Somasiri in early March as he has been working at the Centre since it was first opened in February 2007 and has been an extremely hard working and dependable member of the SRI team.

He had been thinking about retiring for a while after developing cataracts and we are hoping that he will get these fixed soon so he can enjoy resting at his house near the centre.

But we will not lose contact with him as he will continue looking after the keys for us and we have put his daughter Dharnushika onto our student sponsorship programme.

Dharnushika is one of the main reasons why we gave Mr Somasiri a job in he first place. At that time she was a pupil at Mahasenpura School and employing him was a good way to help support her too.

She has gone on to excel academically and is now at a school near Galle studying for her A levels. Her ambition is to become a lawyer.

Image 3In Mr Somasiri’s place, we have hired Mr Kumara as our new security guard. He also has a daughter at Mahasenpura School. He was previously a labourer, but can not work in that job any longer after damaging his back.

The whole SRI team would like to say a big THANK YOU and HAPPY RETIREMENT to Mr Somasiri.