The Learners Of Owamboland

The Children of Twaalulilwa School

Non-Fiction - Cultural
88 Pages
Reviewed on 02/14/2010
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Author Biography

Dr. Karen Hutchins Pirnot is a Clinical Psychologist and author. She writes family-friendly books for those from ages two to one hundred and two. She has won multiple awards from Readers Favorite and her books are used at schools, colleges and libraries across the nation.

Dr. Pirnot's book AS I AM was co-authored by Garret Frey, a former patient who struggled to obtain a free public education as a quadriplegic, ventilator-dependent child. He fought through the courts, a battle which ended up before the judges of the US Supreme Court. The judgment in the case is now a hallmark decision affecting thousands of handicapped children across the nation. The 5 book, mid-grade series called Ordinary Kids features various special needs people (children and adults) in everyday situations.

Tapping into her work as a psychologist, Dr. Pirnot puts her characters into realistic but difficult situations and then allows them to dig their way through to successful results. This approach allows both child and adult characters to feel a sense of efficacy in their own abilities.

The autobiography Just A Common Lady details Dr. Pirnot's own struggles as a child. Her mother died at a young age, leaving Dr. Pirnot and her siblings in the care of various family members for years. The lessons she learned from these caretakers undoubtedly influenced her multivariate approach as a practicing psychologist.

Dr. Pirnot may be reached at her website:

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne Boiling for Readers' Favorite

Readers' Favorite Gold Medal Award WinnerGina Hutchins Inman is a German-American citizen. In her desire to give to those less fortunate than herself, she traveled to Owamboland, Namibia, Africa where she spent 8 weeks with the children of the Twaahililwa School. She enjoyed the simplicity of their life. “The greatest impact of all was the realization that when you give to others, expecting nothing in return, the gifts which come back to you are abundant and lasting.” Inman did not know the language and knew little about the culture, but she willingly gave of herself. She found the people friendly and accepting.

There are 260 'learners' in the school. This book is filled with their photographs. Inman shares notes from the children with readers. The learners were eager to help out. When Inman became tired, they wanted to massage her legs.

Inman stayed with Meme Selma, the principal of the school and the Reverend of the church. Selma was instrumental in the rebuilding of the school after it was destroyed by war.

The photographs bring her experiences to life on the pages. She shares information about the culture: what they eat, how they wash their clothing and how they share with each other.

"The Learners of Owamboland" is a heartwarming book. We need more people like Gina Hutchins Inman, people that care enough about others to take risks.