Harmony Preschool, established by Ready for Reading and housed in their community library, is located in a poor area of eastern Rwanda. The project will continue to build on Harmony's book rich, hands-on learning curriculum for its 40 students, increase the number of preschool teachers receiving training and parent education workshops. Learning through play practices will be integrated into children's programs and activities at the library providing access to any child in the community.
Though the enrollment rate for primary school children is 90% in Rwanda, the quality of education is uneven. Remote rural areas like Rwinkwavu (pop 21,000) are last to see improvements in infrastructure, teacher training and provision of textbooks and learning materials. Pre-primary education is an emerging priority but many schools don't offer a preschool year. The project will impact teachers in 8 area schools through training as well preschool aged children throughout Rwinkwavu Sector.
Ready for Reading's community library serves as a preschool teacher training resource center in the District. Teachers come to Harmony to observe the learning process and environment, expand their knowledge base and share their new skills and "learning through play" curriculum with their fellow teachers back in their schools and bring a hands-on learning environment to their classrooms so more curious young children can thrive and grow.
Early childhood education leads to improved school achievement, graduation and productivity in adulthood. Beyond improved academic outcomes, it has a great impact on preschool children's health/nutrition and social/emotional development and building of relationships and positive interactions with peers and parents. Parents benefit through parenting skills workshops. The project will train 150 teachers, impact 6,000 students and children who visit the library.