Mobile Devices as Tools for Pre-reading

Learning Academy Worldwide's M-Ubuntu project strongly believes that preparing young readers for the texts or stories that they will read improves their reading skills.

That is why M-Ubuntu’s Mobile Pre-Reading Strategy (MoPreRead) helps teachers to excite their young readers about the paragraph, short story or book that they will be reading.

Re-cycled phones, refurbished MacBooks and wireless routers form the technical infrastructure of this initiative and the M-Ubuntu MobiTechs supports teachers, in-class or prior to class, during deployment.

The school’s existing curriculum content determines the design of the pre-reading strategy which is easily constructed by the Teacher or MobiTechs by using the MoPreRead Template. Images, Video clips, Sounds or Texts (related to the curriculum content) are used from an existing database and a set of questions are designed to give structure to the mini-lesson.

These pre-reading strategies, also called mini-lessons, can be created by teachers on any mobile device that is connected to the local server (refurbished MacBook) and is then seamlessly pushed to the student devices right at the time that the teacher needs it.

Mini-lesson creators even source content from the immediate surroundings, either in class or outside on the school grounds.

Students are also engaged to use their mobile device to capture their observations and share those with the class, either in support of the pre-reading strategy, or as an outcome of the pre-reading strategy.


Off-the-grid solution showcased at UNESCO conference

Mr James Williams demonstrated the Learning Academy Worldwide tech-solution for pre-reading strategies at the Unesco Mobile Learning Week in Paris last month.

Part of the M-Ubuntu project in South Africa, the teacher-lead, off-the-grid solution will stream curriculum-related media-rich content to mobile devices.

Using recycled phones donated by Sprint, USA, refurbished routers and MacBooks, Mr Williams created a local internet that works within the parameters of the school where, especially rural schools with unreliable internet connection, can access curriculum-related content in a browser-based interface.

Several schools in South Africa will switched on their own internet at the beginning of the 2nd quarter of the country’s academic year.

A professional development program for young Mobitechs and Teachers will also be launched as part of the roll out starting in April, 2014


Spirulina project in Cape Town schools combine microbiology with solving real problems

The Cape Academy of Mathematics, Science and Technology and Groenberg Secondary School will be hubs to a quartet of teachers and eight students from the Herzliya Hebrew Gymnasium in Tel-Aviv, ISRAEL, from 21 February - 1 March in the Western Cape, SOUTH AFRICA. Grade 10 students from 4 other schools will convene to provide knowledge and skills that will enable schools to collaborate in solving the nutritional needs of young children. The practical approach in teaching microbiology to High School students will improve understanding of the ecology needed to grow Spirulina and will establish the basis for schools to replicate the process in other schools, the region and the country. Spirulina has been dubbed the “super food” because of its high content of protein (70%). Students at Herzliya have been growing the algae in plastic bottles - a process that forms part of their studies in microbiology. Several international organizations, including UNESCO and Rotary International, are seeing the potential of Spirulina to help fight malnutrition.