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Dem kids blow me mind

Dem kids blow me mind

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Before ah forget, ah have to apologize to Sir Hilary foh ah-so-she-air-thing his Barbados ‘nighthood wid de British. Is Doc Fraser who told me dat Bo-bade-us doing dey own ting, dey call it ‘Sir Dis’ and ‘Dame Dat’ of St. Andrew. All joke aside, way wrong wid dem Beer-Johns? Like dey forget Ah Rose by any other title is de same Ah Rose. Sorry bout dat Renwick.{{more}}

DE STEM PROJECT

Seriously though, dem young people at St Martin’s Secondary (SMSS) and the Community College blew me mind last week Thursday and Friday. Foh de first six weeks of de summer vacation, my youth-man and his great nephew, who is my great-grand-son, were among ah number ah students at SMSS engrossed in ah Summer Program “STEM,” ah-crow-name foh Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. STEM is de brain child of a group of committed teachers headed by Petrus Gumbs, an IT Graduate Teacher at St Martin’s, supported by volunteer professionals and expertise, equipped to deliver training in de subject areas in STEM. Sessions were scheduled foh two hours ah day twice weekly, but some ah de kids had so much fun, dey stayed on foh hours after.

But STEM is not bout baby-sitting de kids foh de vacation, it’s an introduction to de real world of wuk. STEM has roots and branches that are beginning to bear fruits. It all came out at last Thursday’s presentation ceremony when some ah de students presented dey projects. Ah talking ‘bout 12 and 14 year ole children using de computer to produce Art wuk, Architectural and Engineering Drawings in three dimensions. Some fantastic projects! Kids designing dey own computer games, again in three dimensions. My lickle great-grand who uses to be glued on de computer playing video games, has designed his own games foh me to play “Pixelated Zombie,” way ah suppose to be shooting Zombies as fast as dey come up.

Ah wish he could design ah game wid some ah de real Zombies in white collar. Man nuff respect to Mr. Gumbs and his STEM team. It speaks volumes foh de future of Education in SVG, when teachers surrender dey summer vacation foh ah token figure, and professionals could give-back foh free, of dey valuable time (time is money) to de development ah de youths education. Dis sort of environment has to be ah bi-product of de Education Rev-all-yuh-shun. Significantly, our Teachers must be encouraged and compensated when dey tek dis sort ah initiative, giving of dey time in such positive ways. Ah double increment pon dey salary should be de minimum.

FUTURE SCIENTISTS AND MEDICINE MAKERS

Firstly ah was knocked over wid de new “Wing” or addition at de Community College. Ah most imposing piece ah Architecture work of Art, courtesy Architect, Moulton Mayers, Contractor Gibson and others. Our A-Level College is second to none! Nice wuk Moulton and Co!

Yes dem fifteen year ole science students at Community College is who stumped me in de Lab wid dey Plant Research Project, and believe me, dis is no Pyar-Pyar stuff; dey collect local Plants researching foh “Vin-blastine and Vin-cristine” nothing to do wid Vin-cy, dem is Plant Source of Anti Cancer Drugs.

At saw lots ah local plant material being preserved for future research e.g Sour Sop, Ole Maid or Perri Winkle, would yuh believe sleepy head “Piss-ah-bed” high on de list ah de plants wid potential anti-cancer components. So also is Shine Bush dat we use foh Colds; Shado Beni, foh flavor foh Indian Curry; remember when yuh had ah chest cold dat rackling, dey uses to give yuh “Vomit Bush” to vomit up de flem. De all have potential cancer cures.

But de names ah see associated wid dis glorious project are, deputy Director, (Professor) Nigel Scott, ah making him ah Professor so dat he could tek over from Dr Warrican. Dey’s Fred Prescod of de famous C.W Prescod family. Back in my day in school in de 1950’s, Science Masters came one in ah million, Gene Smith from Jah-mek-her was best of dem all; dey was ah Mr Lal, nice fellar came from India. And ah Tusty one name Mapp from T’n’T, he had ah problem, foh reasons never explained, he threw ah set ah boys out his Science Class.

Sounds unbelievable but it’s true. Fred was one who got kicked out, he did his Chemistry out ah school, assisted by one B.A King. Ah Google de name Fred Prescod and it says “Graduate of Mc Gill University, Horticultural Educator, Horticulturalist, Instructor bla! Bla! It’s amazing how God works, Fred, who was Mapp’s reject is now in Canada raising funds to ensure de success of ah Research Project in Chemistry in his native homeland. But de Supervisor of de project, de real brain behind it all is Dr B.A. King, undoubtedly one ah de brightest boys to breeze thru Grammar School; ah Retired Professor wid ah string ah meaningful letters from de Alphabet behind his name, including ah PhD in Physical/Inorganic Chemistry; his expertise is Pharmaceutical Chemistry. Dr. King’s vision is to open up our young children to practical Chemistry, extracting medicine and anti-cancer viruses from local plants. He’s doing ah remarkable job, local financing will guarantee absolute success. But ah happy foh dem students, dey really enjoying de program, dey speak fluent Chemistry language wid authority and understanding. Dey mek me wish ah was ah youth all over again. And wid dat is gone ah gone again

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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