An EDC initiative to improve literacy and learning in Zambia was the focus of a recent visit by Dr. Jill Biden, wife of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, and Rajiv Shah, administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The program, known as Time to Learn, is USAID/Zambia’s flagship program for improving education in community schools.
As part of an effort to increase the participation of South Sudanese in the peace process and now the civic life of their new nation, the Sudan Radio Service provides access to balanced and useful information through radio-based education, news, and entertainment programs presented by local presenters in nine languages. Independent research found that Sudan Radio Service has approximately one million listeners.
Sudan Radio Service also builds the capacity of Sudanese journalists through its Certificate in Broadcast Journalism program and through on-the-job training.
The Literacy, Language, and Learning Initiative (L3) helps Rwanda’s Ministry of Education (MINEDUC) develop and implement new national standards for literacy (in English and Kinyarwanda) and numeracy, aiming to improve students’ reading and mathematics skills in grades 1 to 4, as well as their English language proficiency. In partnership with MINEDUC, L3 works with pre-service and in-service facilitators to introduce proven reading and mathematics teaching strategies and with community volunteers to support struggling learners.
In the Philippines, EDC’s Basa Pilipinas (Read Philippines) project makes a pledge to get more than 1 million young children reading. The results of this USAID-funded program are discussed in this story from the Philippine Inquirer.
A new study conducted by Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), and SRI International found that the acquisition of essential early math skills, such as counting, recognizing numerals, recognizing shapes, and patterning, increased significantly among four- and five-year-old children from economically disadvantaged communities who participated in a 10-week PBS KIDS Transmedia Math Supplement initiative. Transmedia includes the use of familiar characters, settings, and stories across different media formats.
What is the impact of multimedia use on young children? This article explores that question and includes details from a study by EDC and SRI International that tested the measures of early literacy after viewing PBS content.
Malawi primary schools face issues of large classes, high repetition rates, and teachers who resort to lectures and other marginally effective rote learning techniques to teach crowded classrooms. The Malawi Tikwere! (Let’s go up!) program uses interactive radio instruction (IRI) broadcasts to address these issues and bring student-centered instruction to primary schools countrywide.
The Mali USAID/ PHARE program (Programme Harmonisé d’Appui au Renforcement de l’Education) supports the Malian Ministry of Education’s efforts to improve the quality of elementary education, with an emphasis on literacy. This five-year program works nationally, reaching over 40,000 classrooms and 500,000 students. Known as “Road to Reading” in English, the program will produce and broadcast Interactive Radio Instruction (IRI) programs for grades 1–6 with dual instructional objectives for teachers and students.
Supported Literacy for Adolescents is a research-based literacy program. Its goal is to improve reading, writing, and comprehension among both high-risk and typically achieving populations. The program is deeply rooted in standards-based curriculum design, and all components of the program align with national reading and writing standards, as well as selected content standards.
Possible Worlds: A National Research and Development Center on Instructional Technology is a five-year research effort that will develop a series of game-based activities to aid science and literacy instruction.
The project is developing and pilot-testing game modules—built around the Nintendo DS—that infuse inquiry-based learning and literacy supports into traditional classroom practices.
The Regional Educational Laboratory Northeast and Islands (REL-NEI) is one of ten regional laboratories and has a mission to help pre-K–16 educators use the best available evidence to make decisions leading to improved student achievement and reduced performance gaps.
Writers’ Express (WEX) is a year-long writing program for students in grades 3-12 and is supported through professional development for teachers and school administrators. EDC is conducting a research study to determine whether the program is effective for students in elementary schools.
In this study:
70 Massachusetts schools will be randomly selected to either implement the WEX program or use the usual grade 4 writing instruction.
EDC will evaluate the WEX curriculum, materials, instructional practices, and embedded professional development.
The Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) program is designed to increase opportunities for students and teachers to learn about and use information technologies within the contexts of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Youth-based projects that have strong emphases on career and educational paths
EQuALLS2 increases access to quality basic education and livelihood skills in areas most affected by conflict and poverty in the Philippines (primarily the Muslim areas in the Mindanao island group in the south). EQuALLS2 is a large-scale project that seeks to benefit 345,000 children and youth in 37 municipalities and four cities by training 37,238 educators and school officials, building the capacity of 850 local education stakeholder groups, and expanding local education resources through public-private partnerships.
The New York Comprehensive Center (NYCC) is one of 16 regional comprehensive centers that are federally funded to implement the mandates of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). In doing so, NYCC engages the New York State Education Department in using research-based findings and rigorous evidence. The Center provides technical assistance services to meet the Department’s priority needs and further the key initiatives of the US Department of Education. Additionally, the NYCC works with the State on emerging needs based on new statutes and policy mandates.
The New England Comprehensive Center (NECC) is one of 16 regional comprehensive centers that are federally funded to implement the mandates of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). The NECC engages state education leaders in using research and best practice to meet the goals of NCLB. Our purpose is to design and deliver technical assistance services that meet education leaders’ priority needs, further the key initiatives of the U.S. Department of Education, and have the greatest potential for building states’ capacities to help districts and schools improve.
The Technology Tools for Teaching and Training (dot-EDU T4) project seeks to assist the education departments in the Indian states of Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Delhi, for quality teaching and learning for the primary education sector. To this end, dot-EDU T4 has created interactive, multimedia tools in audio, video, and software formats that established new standards for education quality while delivering education services on a large scale and reaching out to girls and other vulnerable populations.
”TV411 What’s Cooking?” uses an online cooking show and other multimedia resources to provide mathematics and science content to adults with low levels of literacy and numeracy. The project’s goals are to raise awareness of math and science content in daily life; overcome negative attitudes and behaviors related to science learning; and increase knowledge, vocabulary, and skills related to science and math. Additionally, the project assists adult educators and informal workshop facilitators with teaching basic math and science concepts.
Apps can engage kids in the study of math, but what are they really learning? EDC is interviewed about its work with Boston public television station WGBH and the Next Generation Preschool Math program to evaluate the effectiveness of several apps.
The Southern Sudan Interactive Radio Instruction (SSIRI) project is a program of the Southern Sudan Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST). Four SSIRI activities provide learning opportunities for children, adults, and teachers in South Sudan.
THELEARNINGVILLAGE: IRI programs based on the Southern Sudanese Primary School Syllabus.
E-Learning for Educators, funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Ready to Teach program, seeks to establish successful, sustainable, statewide online professional development programs that address teacher quality and student achievement goals. Through its EdTech Leaders® Online program, EDC supports this initiative by establishing a cadre of online professional development instructors and course developers within each state.
Bilingual Radio for Colombia (Bilingüismo Radial para Colombia) is a pilot project providing basic English skills to rural Colombian children. Through the program, EDC is helping Universidad del Norte (UniNorte) to develop and produce Interactive Radio Instruction programs for English as a Second Language and to train primary school teachers to use the programs.
Prepara Ami ba Serbisu (PAS), which translates to “Preparing Us for Work,” is a workforce preparation program in Timor-Leste that assists rural youth (ages 16–30), many of whom dropped out of school and have little opportunity other than subsistence farming. These youth gain the skills and expertise needed to find self-employment or job opportunities and more promising futures. Over 1,500 men and women graduated from the program’s eight-month combination of off-the-job classroom instruction, on-the-job training, and livelihood accompaniment.
ALMA’s mission is to help adults gain basic reading, writing, and math skills. ALMA creates innovative, educationally sound, and entertaining television-based teaching materials and cultivates community networks to support ALMA learners. TV411, ALMA’s magazine-format television series (with ancillary print materials and an instructional Web site) is aired on more than 100 stations nationwide.