DOT-COM Activity: DRC - Complementary Instructional Strategies and Community Learning and Resource Center in DRC
Country: Democratic Republic of the Congo
Short Description: This project improved current basic educational methodologies and support the existing national curriculum in the Democratic Republic of Congo by fostering learning processes that are rooted in experience, use local knowledge and technologies, interact effectively with local development problems, and make appropriate use of information and communication technologies.
Phase/Type of Activity: Signed Award Status: Completed
Start date: September 30, 2002 End Date: June 30, 2004
Partners: Academy for Educational Development
Person(s) to contact
Sonia Arias , Project Director
Education Development Center
Full Description: The project involved two initial small-scale education pilot projects, the Vanga Community Learning and Resource Center and the Luozi Complementary Instructional Strategy Project. The projects used different approaches and strategies to arrive at the same objective, i.e., to improve the quality of basic education and address a number of challenges facing the education sector.Specifically, the project aimed to improve basic educational methodologies and support the existing national curriculum by fostering learning processes that were rooted in experience, used local knowledge and technologies, interacted effectively with local development problems, and made appropriate use of information and communication technologies. The project increased the capacity of a selected cadre of trainers, teachers, and community leaders so that they could create culturally appropriate and language-specific instructional materials for youth and adults based on sound, innovative pedagogy and using appropriate local and information technologies; access and disseminate appropriate resources through increased media literacy; and incorporate gender equity into these activities and materials.
dot-EDU staff completed the second phase of Training of Trainers (TOT) sessions in Vanga as planned during January 2004. Parallel to this training, EDCs Stephanie Foerster conducted video training for observation of changes in teachers instructional strategies and teacher peer and self-analysis. A no-cost extension has been approved. The extension should keep the project in operation through the end of calendar year 2004.
Update 2 (July-Sept. 2004)
Project staff developed a proposal for a new two-year award to expand work begun under the current award. Other activities include support in the area of pedagogical training, in August, and gender analysis, in July.
Update 3(January 2005): The project officially closed in December, 2004.
Impact of Vanga Telecenter: Anecdotes illustrating the impact of the Vanga telecenter within the community include:
A medical practitioner who was able to find the manufacturer of his sonogram equipment online and thus arrange for its repair.
The family of a child with congenital heart disease who had to send her to Paris for surgery was able to organize travel and communicate with her and the doctors during her stay in France all thanks to the fact that there was Internet in Vanga.
Small business owners arranging for meetings and the purchase of merchandise in Kinshasa from Vanga thereby making their visits to the capital much more efficient.
Impact of Teacher Training:
Compared with observed teacher behavior a year earlier, when the initial needs assessment was undertaken, it is immediately clear how dramatically the targeted teachers have changed. After training teachers:
Construct, out of local resources, materials for use in their classrooms to support their teaching and the learning of their students;
Identify in the proximity of their classrooms opportunities for students to link theoretical concepts to concrete elements in their environment (see e.g. Figure 11) and organize excursions outside the classroom;
Focus more than before on the students learning, rather than on their own teaching;
Can explain to the team why they opt for particular pedagogical strategies;
Succeed in building bridges between disciplines, such as, when in a lesson about domestic animals, issues of naming body parts are dealt with alongside issues of food production and its economic and environmental implications as well as issues of hygiene;
Engage in teamwork, including crossing the traditional boundaries between schools pertaining to the different religious denominations, exchanging ideas with colleagues;
Interact more, and more frequently, with their students;
Are successful in encouraging the children to take a more active part in preparing classroom events, such as when children bring in plants or help construct teaching and learning aids; and
Have become more conscious of the presence of learning spaces other than those provided by the school environment.
Development Sector(s): Research, Civil Society, Enterprise Development, Information Technology, Basic Education, Maternal and Child Health, Women in Development
ICT Intervention(s): Computers in schools, ICT/Curriculum integration, LAN/network infrastructure, Telecenters
Links and Files:
- Mid-term Evaluation Report: Community Learning and Resource Center / Complementary Instructional Str: http://https://dot-com-alliance.org/documents/CongoEval.pdf
The report (prepared by The Mitchel Group, Inc.), in June 2004, presents the findings of the mid-term evaluation of two initial smallscale education pilot projects, the Vanga Community Learning and Resource Center (hereafter "the Center") and the Luozi Complementary Instructional Strategy Project. Funded by USAID/DRC, both projects are being implemented by Education Development Center(EDC)working alone, in the case of the Luozi project, and in collaboration with the Academy for Educational Development (AED), in the case of Vanga. The projects are using different approaches and strategies to arrive at the same objective, i.e., to improve the quality of basic education and address a number of challenges facing the education sector.