AIL has piloted a project using cell phones and texting in conjunction with it's literacy program to accelerate the learning of 60 illiterate young Afghan women. The students in the pilot classes were able to complete 3 levels of literacy classes in 5 months, a feat which normally takes 18 months. AIL is now looking to expand this successful program from 2 classes to 10 classes in different areas of Afghanistan as well as train teachers on how to use cell phones as a teaching tool.
Despite improvements in the education system in Afghanistan, many women and girls are illiterate. Only 12.6% of Afghan women over the age of 15 are literate, and only 23.5% of the total population over the age of 15 is. Illiteracy means that these women and girls have limited opportunities for advancement. They have few options when it comes to education, and few options for improving their economic situation.
AIL piloted a project that helps women and girls learn to read and write well and quickly. By using cell phones and texting, teachers were able to reinforce classroom learning. Students were excited to use the phones to text one another, further reinforcing their new skills. Once the students could read and write, the students were inspired to continue their education. AIL is hoping to expand this successful program and to train teachers to be able to use this technology in their classes.
This project will enroll 300 women and girls in 10 mobile literacy classes. At the end of 5 months these students will have learned to read and write by taking literacy classes supplemented with interactions via text messages with their instructors and other students. At the end of the literacy class, the hope is that the students will feel empowered, and inspired to continue their education. In addition, teachers will be trained to use these new tools to education their students.
Before I took this class, I could not read or write. All I knew was the alphabet. Now that I have finished the class, I was able to write a letter about our family to my brother. - Mobile Literacy Student, Mobile Literacy Student
Total Funding Received to Date: $1,437
Remaining Goal to be Funded: $96,563
Total Funding Goal: $98,000
This project has provided additional documentation in a Microsoft Word file (projdoc.doc).