Megan Orr

Megan Orr (Kakenya Center for Excellence - KCE): Between 2006 and 2009, Megan studied graduated from the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC), where she studied Sociology, Film & Digital Media. Megan also worked as the Program Coordinator at the UCSC Women’s Center, where she organized Lunafest, a national traveling film festival of films by, for, and about women. Megan then worked as an Associate Video Editor for 'the Muse,' an online video periodical, and a freelance Videographer for AOL's national news website, After her fellowship Megan wrote: “I learned a tremendous amount about Maasai culture, politics, and education. It taught me about cross-cultural communication and patience. By working with the facilitators I was able to absorb a huge amount of information about FGM, leadership, self-defense and rape prevention."

T-y-p-i-n-g Together One Sentence at a Time

22 Mar

“If you can hear me clap twice. A few students clap. “If you can hear me clap three times.”  With most eyes and ears tuned in I ask class four, “Now class what is our computers first and last name (username and password), everyone this time?”

“Administrator and admin!”

Welcome to one of my computer classes at KCE. For the past two weeks I have been teaching all classes, four through seven. We have covered what computers are used for, its hardware components, how to log on, how to maneuver on the desktop using the mouse and we recently began a lesson on typing.

First week of computer classes and three questions to introduce the days lesson

My class four has thirty-nine students, class five has twenty-eight, class six has thirty-two and class seven has twenty-two. There are sixteen HP PC computers, thanks to a donation in 2011 made by Hewlett Packard. Computer classes aren’t only a lesson on IT, but also on the nature of sharing. The girls must take turns using the mouse and keyboard.

Class seven girls taking turns typing

Typing was the most challenging yet most exciting activity so far. For each class I split the girls into groups and had them vote on who they wanted to write a letter to. Of course aunts, sisters and grandmothers were some of the people mentioned but each class wanted to really write to Cleia Noia, Charlotte Bourdillon, Antonia Piccone and Kakenya Ntaiya. It was a pleasure to help these girls write to past AP Peace Fellows, both of which taught computer classes.

Class four girls excited to write a letter

After some time the majority of the girls began to understand and recall how and when to use the spacebar and enter key.

Nine to a computer station can be tough but they manage by helping each other

I was impressed by how well the girls worked together. For instance, when in need of a question mark, a partner would demonstrate how to hold down the shift key. Indeed finding the correct letter on the keyboard was always a challenge. I have yet to introduce how to use both hands when typing, the index finger tends to do all of the work.

Some of the things the girls wrote were very sweet and touching. Here is an example of a letter class seven wrote to Kakenya:

“I hope you are fine and healthy.”- Nampayio Olosimba

“We are fine and hard working.”- Jackline Kantai

“We are doing well in our studies.”- Peyiai Kortom

“Goodbye, may God be with you.”- Gladys Ntoror

Once each group finished I read the letters out loud. The girls got a kick out of hearing how each of their individual sentences came together to form one uniform letter. That was a unique and rewarding part of the exercise that I believe they were not expecting.

Class seven girls typing a letter in Microsoft Word

Recently a few girls from my computer class five stayed after dismissal to continue with the day’s lesson, typing a letter. If the opportunity for more one on one time is there it will most definitely be taken advantage of.

Class four is dismissed and so are their chairs

There may be only one of me but there are many girls open to overcoming any challenge for their academic success.



Posted By Megan Orr

Posted Mar 22nd, 2012


  • Christine

    March 22, 2012



    Thank-you for these updates.


  • Sarah Craven

    March 26, 2012


    Hi Megan

    A wonderful post and delightful photos. We need to figure out how to flag for HP the wonder of their generous gift.

    Keep writing and posting!

    Sending a hug, Sarah

  • Kristen

    March 26, 2012


    Megan – How exciting. All of those girls look so curious and interested. Good work.

  • entrpreneur

    March 27, 2012


    Cool stuff, time well spent!

  • iain

    April 22, 2012


    Really like this blog. We need to find some students over here in the US for the girls to write to! What would it take to get an Internet connection?

  • Coeleen Kiebert

    May 27, 2012


    Please tell the girls how exciting it is to know that they are learning skills that will help them to help the world. Soon they will be able to bring their message of hope everywhere. Coeleen Kiebert

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