In Partnership with The Rand Water Foundation, SchoolNet SA delivered tutoring and teaching support to ten schools located in the Johannesburg West district. The project aimed to provide teacher and learner support on the use of digital technologies and resources in order to improve their teaching and learning in Mathematics, English, Science and Technology. The ten schools were divided into five schools with no ICT equipment and five schools with full ICT, where the Grade 7s had sufficient devices for a 1:1 learner to device ratio.
Classroom support visits were provided per school and ensured that learners were using tablets with carefully selected curriculum-based apps. The purpose of these support visits was to introduce learners to digital applications for learning curriculum content in Maths, Natural Science and English. Additionally, these classroom support was to assist teachers with engaging ideas for using digital resources to help create more excitement about learning whilst teaching the core curriculum. Each classroom support was monitored by a skilled Support Specialist employed by SchoolNet SA.
The classroom visits were very successful, where learners showed great excitement using digital applications for learning. For example, Maths Rocket, helped learners with the basics of mathematics, from initial counting and multiplication skills to algebra. Another application called, Word-Connect helped learners understand word construction and sentence formation and Solar System Scope provided an amazing introduction to Space and astronomy.
The project has proven to be a success, as learners improved their reading and understanding. Most teachers have become more aware of the power of 4IR technologies in the teaching and learning situation and are now excited about digital teaching in their classrooms. So this project demonstrates that Educational Technology is not simply about providing access, but more importantly ensuring that curriculum content and life skills are taught using pedagogies that engage and excite learning in the classroom.
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