Home Instruction: keeping the learning spirit in learners
14-year-old Joyce Ngoma dreams of becoming a medical doctor when she grows up.
Joyce a standard 6 learner at Lwanjazi primary school felt her dreams had been shattered when government announced the closure of schools to curb the spread of the novel Corona virus.
"When I heard that we won’t go to school again I was devastated, I love school and I want to become a medical doctor and help a lot of sick people" said Joyce
However, the introduction of home school instruction where parents have been drilled on how they can offer scaffolds to learners as they learn through radio jingles at home is paying dividends for little Joyce and other children around World Vision Malawi's Khuyu Area Program - AP
"But now am happy that we are still being taught, I can see myself improving especially in reading where I was having a lot of problems", said Joyce
The Home school instruction is an initiative by World Vision Malawi being implemented in 18 Area Programs in 10 Districts across the country and its Khuyu area program is one of the APs implementing the concept.
The program aims at ensuring that primary school level children especially those in lower classes (Std 1-4 and ECD) are being taught reading and writing in very small groups at household level to keep them busy while schools remain closed
Tryness Chipeta of Bongowongo village is an instructor who works with children who go to Lwanjazi primary school
Chipeta says the initiative is helping a lot in promoting the spirit of learning in children as well as keeping them busy
" The initiative is paying dividends as a lot of parents are willing to have their children attend the classes this is also preventing them from being involved in immoral behaviors", Said Chipeta
Head teacher for Lwanjazi primary school Kondwani Kanowanga who doubles up as a monitor for the home school instructors around his school has commended WVM for the initiative which he said is keeping the spirit of learning in the children.
Group village headman Wayenga Bongowongo is impressed with the initiative. The traditional leader confesses that they were worried after hearing that government has announced the closure of schools due to the Corona virus pandemic. The question that exercised their minds was what will happen to their children.
" We thought the education of our children has been doomed with the closure of schools but now with this initiative by World Vision Malawi where the children are being taught at home we are very relieved”, said GVH Wayenga Bongowongo.
The traditional leader said what is most recommendable is the way the lessons are delivered where there is good spacing and hand washing materials are handy at all learning sessions.
World Vision Malawi with its zeal of having the welfare of children at heart and complementing governments effort in keeping the spirit of learning alive in children as schools have closed owing to restrictions due to the novel corona virus pandemic has so far pumped US$6500 in its Khuyu AP for the home instruction initiative.
World Vision Malawi Education Technical Manager Thandeka Nkhonde says the project aims at complimenting governments efforts in ensuring that there is continued learning in the wake of covid19 mainly using remote learning through Emergency Interactive Radio Instruction Programradio jingles.
"The project therefore is helping in providing quality remote learning through building capacity of caregivers/parents in supporting children to be learning remotely from Early Childhood Development to early grades at household level", Said Nkhonde.
Nkhonde says the whole essence of the project is to ensure that children are still learning in their homes amidst Covid 19.
"We felt that it would be very effective if children had someone to be supporting them while they learn through the radio programs especially on the content that these learners cannot process on their own", Said Nkhonde
He said since the onset of the project a number of caregivers who have education or knowledge that can help support a learner in ECD or early grade classes at primary school level (STD 1-4). were identified and trained on how they can instruct the learners through the use of radio programs at home or instruct them in the absence of radios.
The home lessons are being conducted under strict observance of covid19 prevention measures especially social distancing where learners sit over 1 meter apart.
In their Khuyu Area Program AP World Vision Malawi is reaching out to 2275 children around 16 primary schools who are being instructed at home by 401 trained care givers while across the country the organization is implementing the initiative in 186 Area Programs reaching out to 58,144 children.