A new anthology written by Rwandan and U.S. students has been released as part of an ongoing partnership to increase literacy. The anthology is an annual part of the Books & Beyond project, a collaborative service-learning project that connects the Kabwende Primary School (KPS) in Kinigi, Rwanda, with Indiana University’s Global Living-Learning Center and The Project School in Bloomington. The anthology theme this year is Being a Hero. Throughout 16 stories, students wrote about becoming a teacher or a doctor, protecting the environment and helping others in need. Other students wrote about dealing with bullies in school or taking care of their friends.
Established in 2008, Books & Beyond fosters intercultural communication and critical thinking skills as students work together towrite, illustrate and publish annual anthologies of bilingual children’s stories. The stories, written in English and Kinyarwanda, provide reading material for the students at KPS, while students at The Project School receive an intercultural education in the culture and history of Rwanda. In total, Books & Beyond has delivered over 22,000 books to schoolchildren at KPS.
Beth Samuelson, Interim Director of Books & Beyond and Associate Professor of Literacy, Culture and Language Education, said the project represents a long-term collaboration between communities of learners in Rwanda and the U.S.