At Ebolowa, teaching goes digital

In 2017, at Sainte Rose Verenni school in the urban community of Ebolowa, we launched the first digital school programme in Cameroon. We talked with Henri Ovambé, teacher-trainer and one of his pupils Maïlys Megne Fotso.

Young Maïlys knows all about Wikipedia now. “It’s great! You can learn lots by searching on Wikipedia,” she says. At 11 years old, she explains that she learned all the details of the Berlin Conference and the history of the major traditional chiefdoms in Cameroon. Like Maïlys, the fifty other 10 to 11-year olds in her year group have been enjoying a new experience since the start of the school year thanks to our support.

 

 

We have equipped this school with a digital kit. Using the tablets and the server, the pupils can access educational content and search on Wikipedia (with the offline version) under the watchful eye of a teacher. “To start with, we targeted pupils in the last year of primary school. Later, we will see how we can extend this experience to the whole school,” says Henri.

In this unusual school, the lessons take place as normal from Monday to Friday. On Saturday, the lessons go digital. “After seeing what the pupils have done during the week, I plan my lessons using a tablet. I then upload the lessons to the server, so the pupils can access them from their tablets,” explains Henri. He continues: “We always start with an introduction to using the tablet, because the pupils have to connect to the server by themselves. Then we use the content, especially applied to lessons learned in each subject during the week. We test our pupils every last Saturday of the month.”

In Henri’s opinion, digital technology offers more effective learning conditions. “It is a resource that allows pupils to better understand their lessons by watching and doing. Without even knowing it, the child retains information quicker than via traditional teaching methods.”

By the end of the year, 30 schools in throughout Cameroon’s 10 regions will be equipped and supported.

 

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