We train and equip community-minded and entrepreneurial young adults to teach children ages 4-6 in remote areas currently unattended by the Guatemalan government. With the combination of our culturally relevant curriculum centered on creative learning through the use of natural materials and by tackling chronic child malnutrition with a daily healthy snack, we are able to help mentally and physically prepare previously disadvantaged rural children to be successful in the first grade and beyond.
Early childhood learning is crucial to later educational attainment, but in many rural areas the Guatemalan government does not provide preschool. Without having set foot in a classroom before the age of 7, these rural children run a high risk of early failure. In 2015, 27% of all children failed to pass the 1st grade. Children that struggle to pass the 1st grade are far more likely to abandon their studies prior to completing primary school, severely limiting their opportunities later in life.
This project helps overcome geographic isolation and lack of educational resources by delivering an innovative guided curriculum to help children become more prepared for the first grade. Effective, culturally sensitive and low-cost, it trains and pays literate and exemplary community youth to lead children in fun, interactive group learning sessions and activities. We have now paired classes with a daily healthy snack that stands to drastically reduce the impact of chronic malnutrition as well.
Providing programs to underserved rural areas will help stem the tide of failure in primary school by preparing children to learn. Training community youth to be program facilitators will create jobs for them and raise awareness of early childhood learning among parents. Longer term, early learning can have a significant positive impact on children's future opportunities and livelihoods as adults. Magical classroom currently has 22 classrooms and plans on reaching a total of 50 within two years.