A tale of two cities

#83 Happiness

Happiness is a school called Summerfield Primary. No politics of protest or rumours of resentment in these corridors as everyone seems to get along pretty well with everyone else. Located in one of the most economically impoverished areas in Durban, this school hosts a teacher- exchange programme in partnership with Gledhow Primary, a school in Leeds - and teachers from both schools get the opportunity to cross continents once a year.

Although the massive benefits of cross-cultural transmission, and the subsequent advancement of educational objectives across a global stage cannot be ignored, what makes this programme work so well, is the sincerity of the friendship on both sides, as well as a level of commitment designed to `make things happen'. The first image in this sequence shows Henrietta, one of three visiting teachers from Leeds, addressing a small group of grade 4 learners and encouraging them write about moments in their lives, with a view to sharing these accounts with learners from Gledhow Primary. The children from Summerfield then went on to take photographs of each other so that they could attach them in a collective email to Henrietta's class. This was enhanced by audio clips where the children were given a chance to introduce themselves. A digital voice recorder was used.

All the images were shot by grade 4 learners. The last image is of the school's Head Prefect - one of the nicest kids at Summerfield. Communication works!