Nalanda Project

Dear Nalanda Family,

Greetings!

This year we saw a student dance – literally dance – when he mastered a concept through Nalanda that he failed to fully grasp in his traditional class the previous day. We saw a student attempt the same question again, and again, and again – refusing to give up – turning eventually to a video, then returning to the question, putting pencil to paper, and finally coming to an aha moment. We saw students taking up challenges - one after another - and be engaged in revisions tests like never before. And all this in classrooms that didn’t have electricity, let alone internet.

89% of our teachers strongly agree that the Nalanda Project adds value to their classroom.
83% of our Headmasters strongly agree that the Nalanda Project has a positive effect in their school.
80% of our teachers strongly agree that children enjoy learning Maths via the Nalanda Project.

We have already seen a teacher who didn’t know how to use a computer mouse grow to view data reports on her students and tailor her instruction to meet individual needs. No longer burdened by a lack of student engagement, we have seen another teacher shifting from his lecture-style of teaching to sit individually with a student, ask questions, and help her. So much has been achieved but there is more work to do – Students need more and better content, teachers need better systems for tracking and acting on data, and communities around the world need to be introduced to our technology. To this end, we introduce -

Kolibri!

What makes Kolibri different?

Kolibri is an offline, open-source ed-tech toolkit designed specifically for low income communities. It will be the go-to platform for free and open source content – Kolibri’s library will host content in several languages, content that covers many subjects, and resources that cater to diverse learning types. Further, Kolibri will allow users to mix and match content from different sources and will offer tools that allow for curriculum mapping. With Kolibri, content will be culturally relevant and localized through and through. In India, students will learn from materials that use “chapatti charts” instead of pie graphs and characters named “Arjun” in addition to “Adam.” Kolibri will have a bigger, better, more flexible, and yet localized content library.

Kolibri will also include tools for self-paced learning and will provide instant feedback and recommendations for students and teachers.

Vigneshwar RB, representing LE and MFE at the Google.org's event

On April 6th 2017, the Nalanda Project team represented Learning Equality in Google.org’s conference held in Delhi. Vigneshwar RB, Director of Operations, spoke about the need for technology in education and how Learning Equality and Motivation For Excellence are collaborating to create a revolutionary experience of blended learning in low-income schools. The conference gave us the chance to talk about the upcoming launch of Kolibri and discuss how Google.org’s funding will enable Learning Equality create a markedly different product impacting over tens of thousands of children across India.

Nalanda Project Team representing LE at Google.org's event

With Kolibri, 4.3 billion disconnected people in the world will finally have access to the educational resources they deserve.

Pratiksha, Grade 3, LNMPS-Khar, Mumbai

What has been your biggest learning after Nalanda Project’s intervention?

“Today, as we complete almost a year of the Nalanda Project in my grade 3 classroom, I find that I am a better teacher than I was before. I not only appreciate math more, but I have also grown more passionate about it. Nalanda has made me more inquisitive about how I can leverage technology to increase learning in my classroom. Further, now that we have had a year of joyful, high-engagement, and meaningful classes via Nalanda, I also strive to create the same environment in my non-Nalanda classes. Not to mention the year end results have been noteworthy. Heartfelt gratitude to each one of you for making me a part of this incredible initiative."

Sonal Goyal, Grade 3 Teacher, LNMPS- Khar

Grade 3, LNMPS-Khar, Mumbai

In conversation with Nalanda Teachers

Arnab Chatterjee, Program Manager- Delhi, with Nalanda teachers Richa Gupta and Aditya Kandpal, talks about their major learnings through this intervention.

AC : Did you observe any difference in student participation, ownership and learning outcomes by introducing technology into your classroom?

RG : Yes, I could see a major change through this project. Kids excitement and eagerness to learn maths increased heavily and I could see a lot of ownership being taken as kids helped each other out, using hints to know the solution instead of asking me, helping me out to arrange the tabs in the cupboard, etc and the rigor of the class went way up.

AK : With the introduction of technology in my classroom the participation of the children has increased and they look forward do maths now.

Grade 4, NPV-Gautam Nagar, Delhi

AC : How has this technology intervention helped you in teaching?

RG : This technology intervention helped me a lot in teaching. I did a lot of reteaching through the videos which clarified the smallest doubts the kids had. The differentiated questions helped kids from all levels. Also, I could make kids practice more questions in same time.

AK : The technology intervention in my class has helped me a lot. It makes it easier for me to provide material and assessments based on individual growth of the children. It makes it easier for me to give feedback to the children as well.

AC : Which feature did you like most about our product? How has the program support for this year been?

RG : I really liked the Playground feature in Magogenie. It had questions which pushed the kids, the different levels inspired them to do more and they were able to analyze their own areas of development. Program support has been outstanding throughout the entire year.

AK : The best part about the product is the fact that it provides instant feedback to the children. The support was really good. Constant observations and feedbacks helped me and the the children to do better.

Grade 4, Deepalaya, Delhi

AC : What are your plans for next year? How do you plan to use our product to accelerate learning outcomes in your classroom?

RG : If I get the chance to have Nalanda project in my classroom next year also, then I would use the practice or revision part more as it will give kids the chance to work independently, analyze their strengths and areas of development and mark their growth. In order to overcome the language barrier, I focussed on English for a long time till they got a hang of it.

AK : For the upcoming year, I plan to use the program to increase the rigor and give assessments based on a child's capabilities.

In just 3 months from today, Kolibri will be in the hands of over 10,000 children. As these children learn and grow and become more aware of their own intellectual potential and begin to use their education to break cycles of poverty, we too will learn and grow and continue to do all we can to make sure that every child – regardless of connectivity – has the ability to access the materials we would want our own children to learn from.

A heartfelt gratitude to all our stakeholders for making this project a success. We look forward to seeing you in the coming academic year!

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