Students in a Mobile Literacy Class
During 2013, with your generous support and support from grantors, the Afghan Institute of Learning (AIL) was able to expand the mobile literacy program! AIL held a training for teachers in Herat and Kabul, allowing them to offer mobile literacy classes in new learning centers. In addition to the teacher training, AIL was able to offer 9 mobile literacy classes to a total of 315 students, and is planning to offer at least 13 more classes in 2014.
So far the students in classes that have taken place during 2013 have shown the same amazing progress as the students in the pilot classes. It is clear to AIL that combining text messaging and classroom learning has accelerated the pace of learning for students. There were also outcomes that AIL did not anticipate; the women in these classes become interested in the world around them, watching the news, listening to the radio and exploring their environment. The students are so eager to learn to text to communicate, they have also learned to use the phone to access other information, communicate with family members that live far away and teach their mothers and siblings how to text.
In Afghanistan, students often don’t start school on time, and then find it very difficult to learn what they need to know to begin attending a government school. AIL’s mobile literacy class is giving students, like Massoma a chance to catch up and join their peers in a government school. Massoma says,
I have learned so many things in this class. For example, I have learned to read, write and count. I learned how to live a successful life and ways to live a better life in my community. I learned lessons on mutual respect, having good behavior and respecting the ideas of others. I am going to take the entrance exam for the fifth class in the governmental school, and I am sure I will pass the exam because I believe in my abilities. I have an older sister. She is always at home. She was not interested in attending literacy classes because she was not sure that she would be able to learn to read and write, but she has changed her mind after seeing what I have been able to do. I am able to read quotes and messages. I now have my own cell phone and AIL gave me 20,000 messages to use to send messages to my friends. I use my cell phone all day, and sometimes at night. I usually compose and send messages. Sometimes I play games, and use the calculator on my phone. My favorite thing is to send messages to my classmates. I don’t have any suggestions for things that should change, because I think this class is perfect. I thank AIL!
We wish Massoma all the luck taking the exam to enter the fifth grade at the government school, but something tells us that she’ll do just fine.
Again, thank you so much for your support!!