CMS Welcomes Guest Teacher from Tanzania


Hailey Schwobe

Mr. Ian Minga, a guest teacher from Tanzania, teaches sixth graders in Mrs. Amy Hanson’s class about the Maasai tribe.

Sophie Brandt and Hailey Schwobe

Returning from holiday break, Chilton Middle School sixth graders were greeted with a new face in their social studies classes. Mr. Ian J. Minga, a mountain guide from Tanzania, stayed in Chilton from December 28 to January 18 to help educate CMS students about other cultures and the uniqueness of his homeland.

Ian was thrilled to come to Chilton through the aid of his close friend Mrs. Ann Hanamann, the CMS secretary, and Mrs. Amy Hanson, the sixth-grade social studies teacher. They applied for and received money for Ian’s plane tickets through the ArtsCore Grant. Housing funding was not needed as Mrs. Hanamann and her husband gladly welcomed Ian into their home — just as he welcomed Mrs. Hanamann into Tanzania twice.

The first time was to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, first meeting Ian as he guided her up the 19,308 foot rise of mountain, and the second time Ian welcomed Mrs. Hanamann into his home to meet his wife and kids. Mrs. Hanamann enjoyed spending time with Ian and his family. She learned so much about the culture in Tanzania and was able to create lasting memories.

“We went to a restaurant, and there were leftovers. And I said, ‘Well, aren’t we gonna take them home?’ and they just kind of looked at me. They don’t have refrigerators,” said Mrs. Hanamann. “(Restaurants) give any leftover food to the needy or the workers.”

As for staying with Mrs. Hanamann, Ian was very happy with how she and her family received him. “I visit Annie’s parents, friends, sisters. She let me come here,” Ian said. “She planned this not as a professional teacher, but she knows my weaknesses, and she wants to help me be able to share my ideas. And it doesn’t matter that I (have) never gone to school. I can afford this — to do something special. That’s why she arranged for me to come here and learn.”

Ian was also very pleased with the welcome CMS gave him. “The principal, he gave me a good welcome. He gave me a tour of Chilton Middle School, and we went to the elementary school,” Ian said. “He encourages me. They all encourage me, the teachers. I’ve experienced lots of new things.”

Ian was intrigued to learn more about the American school system. “We have a lot of differences,” Ian said. “For me, I can say it is a huge difference compared to our government, the way they treat the students and also the (way the) students have more rights.

“(Students) have better care than the students in my country. Also, the meals they eat in school (are better), the teachers have a closer relationship with the students, and the students have a better education than in my country.”

Tanzania, which is a presidential republic, gained independence from Britain in 1964, and has been striving towards a democratic system since
the 1970s. Children are expected to attend a total of eight years of schooling. Over two thirds of the country’s population is under the age of 25, making the current schools’ populations high.

All of the Chilton faculty involved in bringing Ian to the U.S. were very pleased with how the kids reacted. “They just sit there and listen,” said Mrs. Hanamann. “They’re so interested.”

“He’s not only helped teach in my classroom, but he goes down to other rooms and interacts with the students there. He went down to Mrs. Wilz’s room and cooked with them,” said Mrs. Amy Hanson. “He’s just been observing as much as he can about our culture. We’ve had students that have given him gifts of thanks. One student gave him a book, and we had four young gentlemen this morning gift him a pair of tennis shoes that he could use.”

Ian has worked as a mountain guide at Mount Kilimanjaro since he was 23. “I enjoy it, and this is the job that makes my experience and my future (rich) because I meet people that come from all over the world. So I have never been to school, but I learn from them,” Ian said. “So most of the visitors, they help me to build a sentence and to have more confidence to stand in front of them and to speak to them. So I learn so many things from the people who come from all over.”

Ian has also traveled to many countries in Africa, hiking there, and even once to the Netherlands.

He guesses he is around 44 years old because, as he explained to students, birthdays are not recorded or celebrated in the Kilimanjaro Region. All Ian knows for sure is the year in which he was born.

Ian also enjoyed the gift of Packers tickets from the Hanamanns for the final game of the season when the Packers played the Detroit Lions. He was very interested in the dynamic of the gathering at the game. Ian said, “We went with Annie, her husband, and their friends. They treat me nice. They give me warm Packers clothes. We go there — it is very cold — and in the parking area, we ate good food: sausage, chips, bread. We go to the Packers (game), and the Packers did not do good. They (teased) me, saying, ‘Ian, are you from Detroit? Or are you here for the Packers?’ And I say, ‘No, I am here for the Packers.’ And they say, ‘(If) they do so bad because you are here, we will make you (cheer) for the Detroit Lions!’”