Friday, February 26, 2010

78 more Laptops come to Kasiisi!

We are happy to announce that we have acquired 78 more laptops. This brings our total to a level that we can now fully saturate our Primary 6 class (one student per computer, up to now we have had to suffer with 2 students to one computer).

At this point, each P6 and P5 student will “own” one computer but will be sharing with a student from the opposite class. We have worked out the sharing problem by alternating days for laptop use for each class.

Primary 5 students waiting in line to pick up their laptop for FIRST XO laptop lesson.

Primary 5 Students retrieve XO's from the charging station for the first time....

Sunday, February 14, 2010

XO Laptop teachers get Computer Certificate

Over the holiday, Patrick, Richard, Tom, Moses and Joyce attended the Basic Computer Course at Mountains of the Moon University in Fort Portal, Uganda. The course covered computer theory, the MS Office suite, and the Internet.

These 6 teachers have put in substantial extra time and effort to be our XO Laptop teachers, often giving up lunch time and coming in on the weekends, and this opportunity was given to them, in part, to say “Thank You” for all the hard work. We were also hoping that attending such a course would improve how they teach the XO computer to their students. By being students themselves in a University taught course about computers, we were hoping that they would “borrow” the instructors teaching techniques to help them in their own classrooms.

The results were immediately noticeable. This year we have expanded our Laptop Program into a new grade level so there was a whole batch, 160 to be exact, of brand new students to introduce to the XO. At first I couldn’t place what was different about how they were teaching, but then it hit me. They had more confidence and presence as computer teachers than they did in the previous term. They had new knowledge of computers in general, not just the XO, and they had the Certificate to prove it……

(Left to right Patrick, Richard, Tom, Moses)

And Joyce

The teachers were using the chalk board more effectively , explaining things more clearly, moving at a better pace through topics, and had a better idea of what they were trying to get the students to understand. It is an exciting improvement!