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Afghan students settle in with cookery and cricket at Grantham school



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Cricket and cookery are helping young Afghan students to make friends at West Grantham Secondary Academy.

Afghan students from the Urban and Stoke Rochford hotels have been attending the school since November 2021.

Caroline Millligan, EAL teacher said: "I initially began teaching 15 students English in November, but since then, more students have arrived in Grantham with their families and we currently have 17 students in Years 7 to 11.

Pizza making proves popular (57301310)
Pizza making proves popular (57301310)

“The school has worked hard to promote cohesion amongst the students and in the community by helping their students feel compassion towards the Afghan arrivals and the conditions in Afghanistan that forced them and their families to flee. This has fostered friendship ties between the students and helped with the settling-in process.

Friendship and fun (57301308)
Friendship and fun (57301308)

The school runs community cooking classes once a week at the school. Principal Clare Barber first came up with the idea to offer weekly classes for the students and their parents and older siblings who are not in school.

Volunteers from Alive Church help at the sessions which have proved popular.

The emphasis is on learning to cook cheap and tasty meals, as well as introduce traditional English food like shepherd’s pie and scones with jam and cream.

Cookery classes (57301312)
Cookery classes (57301312)

Caroline added: “The Afghan mothers also taught us to make ferini, a sweet milk dessert with cardamom and almonds, and a delicious rice dish, so we are all learning and having fun.”

Playground cricket (57301306)
Playground cricket (57301306)

Through the cricket charity, ‘Bat for a Chance’, a generous donation of cricket kit has been received and the students play cricket most breaks and lunchtimes with other students joining in and learning the game.



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