The xo s and the Kenya Schools drama festivals

The Kenya National Drama Festival (KNDF) is an annual co-curricular activity, run by the Ministry of Education. The goal of the festival is to tap and nurture creative talent among the Kenyan youth. In order to achieve this obligation, the Ministry of Education has set up the Kenya National Drama Festival committee (KNDFC) which manages the festival through set rules and regulations.
This coming April 2011 the 55th edition of the Kenya National Drama Festivals will kick off in Kakamega town of Western Province bringing students from various schools in the country for a ten days re-enaction of all the happenings in Kenya, ranging from the economy, political ills, and the ills that bedevil the contemporary Kenyan society – including the Hague trials of the Ocampo Six, to institutional corruption; from drug abuse to HIV/ Aids and health; and from crime to classroom challenges affecting students and teachers alike. The 10 day event will kick of on 10 th April 2011 at Kakmega High School until 19th April. It brings together 10,000 students from across the country who presented plays, verses, dances and narratives under this year’s canopy theme of “Enhancing our national values for a better Kenya” which the organizers hopewould enable students understand the need for healing and national cohesion. “Through plays, verses, dances and narratives the student will express their point of view on matters of national importance as they prepare themselves for challenges of leadership,” said Mr Khaemba Sirengo, the festival’s Executive Secretary.
But this year will be a bit different. Efforts by Jane Gakinya a lover of Kenyan schools drama but now living in diaspora wants to sponsor a category of presentations that deal with Information Technology and xo computers. She hopes to partner with the Kenya schools drama festivals to promote IT in Kenya schools. According to arrangements she is making with the festival organizers she will have trophies given to institutions that will have themes on IT and computers. Jane’s thought have been supported by Sandra who feels it is an awesome idea. It will be remembered that on her last visit to Kenya, Sandra did rub shoulders with the high and mighty in Kenya’s education system. She met with officials of the Kenya Institute of Education who are key organisers of the Drama festivals.
Eshibinga Primary is already getting ready for this festival. The kids in the school have a poem entitled. “ Born free but everywhere in chains” It is a dramatized verse that shows how computers in many schools in Kenya are locked in offices away from the kids who need them. The verse appeals to school administrators to release computers to the students so that they can use them freely.
Peter Amunga who is coordinating this activity is in touch with festival organizers about this new category. He also has informed other IT teachers around the country to bring teams to Kakamega which have a story to tell about computers.
The national drama festival is an integral event in the schools and colleges calendar. It provides a platform for students to showcase their acting prowess while at the same time articulating societal and national issues on stage. It is a truism that drama is like a mirror in which we see ourselves as a society from various angles.
While some parents fear that their children participating in drama festivals will hamper their academic progress, studies have shown that children who involve themselves in arts and culture tend to have a higher academic performance.
We hope the new category will even make things better. I will keep you updated.

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About Eshibinga digital village

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