E-READER – KINDLE PROGRAM
In May, 2013 The Rosemary Pencil Foundation launched the first e-reader initiative in Malawi. Thanks to the generosity of a single donor, we were able to partner with San Francisco-based Worldreader an
The e-readers contain a lot of the Malawi secondary school curriculum. This includes Health Sciences, Geography, History, English and Math. Each device also has a dictionary, atlas, other study guides and more than 100 books written by African, American and British authors from well-known classics to recent titles such as President Obama’s autobiography. The teachers have their own devices with Teachers’ Guides on them. Not everything that we would like to include on the devices is digitized and available but we are trying to gain access to more of the course books.
Students who attend secondary school in rural areas have an extremely limited access to books. Often the school libraries simply do not have enough good books to read and for these students, for whom English is a second language (they speak the local language at home) the more reading they can do the better.
We are grateful to one generous donor who continues to support the e-reader program and has made it part of his mission to invest in education and opportunities for our students.
We conducted an informal survey among the students and teachers to see what they enjoyed most about the devices. The consensus was that having additional books to read for pleasure was a bonus as well as being able to study on the e-reader in their own time.
Students who attend secondary school in these rural areas have an extremely limited access to books. Often the school libraries in rural areas simply do not have enough good books to read and for these students, for whom English is a second language (they speak the local language at home), the more reading they can do helps them to realize their full potential. Digital technology lowers the costs and simplifies the delivery of books to our students most of whom rarely get the opportunity to read any book that is not part of the curriculum.
Higher Education and Vocational Training Program
We have a scholarship available to train a former student who wants to become a teacher. This initiative serves two purposes: it is an important incentive for our students wishing to become teachers to excel academically and apply for the scholarship while helping to alleviate Malawi’s desperate shortage of good teachers.