At the beginning of 2014 Project Child came up with the idea of Sekolah Pantai (Beach School) and the desire to provide the project´s own teaching facilities that offers the kids a broad field for experience and learning. By visiting Sekolah Pantai the students will have the opportunity to explore a new and natural space for learning and playing and to participate in a sustainable way of living. Project Childs idea of holistic teaching and supporting individual growth is of high importance so that the already successful existing programs and teaching methods from Yogyakarta will be adopted by Sekolah Pantai. The main aim is to give the students more than just cognitive input, but also to achieve emotional, motor and spiritual development. Affected by the positive and informal learning atmosphere the kids are free to act autonomously and to develop creativity, furthermore, they can get to release for their childlike urge to move on the sports field.
To fulfill this dream the Project Child team had to overcome many challenges within itself during the last two years. After the land was passable and water as well as electricity supply was guaranteed, the main construction work began, which turned out to be more complicated due to heavy rainfall.
Thanks to the generous support of donors, sponsors, partner schools and volunteers Project Child was able to defy all resistance and to complete the building process. In general, the school consists of two big bamboo buildings, which include one open classroom and library as well as one closed building that is used as an office to prepare and review the lessons. Moreover, the infrastructure is completed by sanitary facilities, an open kitchen, and walking paths. A playing field, a campfire site as well as a shady chill out area creates a child-oriented and welcoming atmosphere. Considering a sustainable lifestyle, Project Child decided to build all facilities with bamboo and to recycle construction materials. In the near future, a permaculture garden will be created and maintained with interested students, so that the harvest can be directly used and processed at Sekolah Pantai.
Considering the increasingly polluted beaches around Pacitan, all programs follow the guiding principle of ocean conservation. Besides an open class for all kids, there are collaborations with partner high schools, who send their students to join an environmental workshop day at Sekolah Pantai once a month. Moreover collaborating schools will bring their scouting department to different overnight camps to learn about environmental and ocean protection. These kids will return to their schools as a kind of “eco ambassador”, who will spread their knowledge among their classmates. In order to improve the teaching methods of local teachers, Project Child also offers them different, creative workshops that help to design more interactive and fun lessons. In general, all learning units are held bilingually in Bahasa Indonesia and English and consist of theoretical input, autonomous group work as well as active sports games or garden work.