[SoaS] need advice in Accra
gpope111 at gmail.com
Sun Apr 25 14:01:28 EDT 2010
Much taken with SOAS possibilities but without a lot of experience
even as a teacher I feel that friends here are going to need help both
with making SOAS go, lesson plans, raising modest money and etc; Sorry
if this post is longer than people like.
SOAS (Sugar On A Stick) and The Kanda School Cluster - in rounded numbers
On this campus there are 5 Primary schools, 6 grades, 33 students per
class, Total number of primary school students est. 990.
Junior Secondary School, One school, 35 students per class, 3 grades
(7 to 9) total Kanda JSS 105.
Grand total about 1095 students at Kanda Schools Cluster.
Speculation as to how the 38 XOs trial at Kanda Primary # 5 in Accra
Ghana might at a low cost be reinvigorated and expanded.
XOs were "loaned" to last years 3rd grade Kanda #5 class ('08-'09).
These same laptops were reissued to this year's 3rd grade class
('09-'10). (Please see http://kokrobiteeyes.wordpress.com/ for more
on problems with student owned XOs in Ghana). However the server which
was working last year is now down and they are not benefiting from
wireless network collaboration.
I take this as another OLPC project where technical support is
lacking. People with the needed skills can be found in Accra. Althogh
at a modest costs these may exceed the school's budget.
SOAS To The Rescue
Each of the two XO teachers, this year's 3rd grade and the lady who
is teaching her same students now in the 4th grade tell me that both
students and they benefited from various Sugar activities. They would
also like to have a few recycled desktop SOAS enabled PCs in their 3rd
and 4th grade class room used by project students and later in 5th and
6th grades and for JSS classes.
I've read that in countries many students acquire so quickly XOs and
the Sugar skills that that they are able to help both fellow students
Why not split classes as early as possible, say in the 4th grade, pair
XO students with non XO students so that more can acquire Sugar skills
and access to text books, children's books and world literature all
free. Give awards, let children prove their worth one another!
Kanda Cluster Schools offers an evaluation opportunity between Sugar
and non Sugar students.
Run a few numbers and you will see large potentials for rapid SOAC
growth in Ghana schools.
Free recycled PCs can be shipped in 40' containers from Oakland CA to
Tema Ghana. PCs and monitors are stacked on their sides on pallets and
shrink wrapped. The unit cost would be about $50 - $60 per work
station (sorry my notes are in California) or 25% or lass of the cost
of XOs and of course less when shipped from Europe.
A Note on poverty in gritty crowded working class Kanda.
The portion of Kanda community children attending primary school
climbed by from 26% to about 46% when the government began providing
school lunches! Never the less many of these students must "shift for
them selves." If a child does not bring money home he or she may go to
bed hungry. Very likely the smaller JSS student numbers reflects the
fact that too many students can not afford secondary school.
If SOAS can reduce the cost of education more young people may be able
to complete JSS, SSS and acquire better jobs skills to boot.
More information about the SoaS