Kindergarten 5 Tajikistan

Video: Principal Thanks You For Helping Kindergarteners

Your past support has changed the lives of hundreds of children enrolled at Kindergarten #5!

Earlier this year, the kindergarten’s principal, Zolfiya Nekpaeva, spoke with Mahbuba Qurbonalieva, the director of Central Asia Institute Tajikistan. She wanted to express her gratitude for the lifechanging renovations made to the 30-year-old kindergarten she oversees.   

An Old School Transformed

In 1989, Kindergarten #5 was a brand-new building situated in the center of Khorog, a sleepy little mountain town nestled in the Pamir Mountains. Back then, Kindergarten #5 was a state-of-the-art facility, especially for such a small community, and recognized by the locals as the “the best kindergarten in town.”

Sadly, time hasn’t been kind to Kindergarten #5. With more than 300 children aged 2 to 5 passing through its halls each year the school experienced a lot of wear and tear. Eventually, it fell into disrepair. The walls and floors rotted, windows cracked, and the sewer system broke. The building became a hazard. Someone needed to intervene. That someone would be Mahbuba Qurbonalieva, director of Central Asia Institute Tajikistan (CAIT).

In 2014, Mahbuba heard how desperate parents and teachers were to renovate Kindergarten #5. She jumped at the chance to help. With the help of donors from around the world, Central Asia Institute Tajikistan has since repaired the school’s exterior, overhauled classrooms, replaced broken windows, fixed the sewer system, renovated bathrooms and kitchens, installed a boundary fence, and much more. Today, after all of the improvements, Kindergarten #5 is hardly recognizable.

Kindergarten 5 in Khorog
Student engagement and hands-on learning is encouraged at Kindergarten #5.

The structure, however, isn’t the only thing that has been upgraded. The kindergarten staff, with the support of Central Asia Institute Tajikistan, have been able to participate in rigorous teacher training programs. Equipped with the latest teaching methods, they now have the skills to accommodate different learning styles and inspire student engagement. This is a huge improvement from the way teachers used to teach at Kindergarten #5. Before they participated in the CAI-sponsored training programs, teachers used Soviet-style teaching methods. These methods required students (even children as young as 2 years old) to stay seated for close to 9 hours a day and rewarded rote memorization over comprehension. Because of Kindergarten #5’s excellent facilities and success with modern teaching methods, teachers from the region – especially teachers from rural and isolated schools – travel the long distances to work and learn at this model school.

Thirty years after it was built, Kindergarten #5 is once again a well-respected school and a prime example of a holistic learning environment. The children, parents, teachers, and principal of Kindergarten #5 are all incredibly grateful to the generous donors living half-a-world-away who made this all possible.

Thank you for changing the lives of hundreds of children enrolled at Kindergarten #5, and future generations to come!

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