Everlyne, Teacher Assistant, Bungoma County
Accelerated Learning Program - reaching the furthest behind
HundrED has selected this innovation to
Why did you create this innovation?
The persistent learning crisis in Kenya necessitates a teaching workforce able to deliver concepts using appropriate teaching/learning strategies (Bunyi et al, 2011). Leveraging on global knowledge, we adapted the Teaching at the Right Level approach, extensively tested by Pratham and JPAL in India, to reach children furthest behind in Kenya. We have translated this approach to the Kenyan context.
How does your innovation work in practice?
There is evidence that this innovation works. By the end of 10 days, 79% of learners progress by at least one competency level in both literacy and numeracy. The innovation applies four key components: 3-step teacher preparation approach – a 6-day teacher induction in participatory and play-based methodologies, 10-day Do-It-Yourself sessions in schools, and 3-month refresher trainings and mentor support; Use of simple assessments to identify the actual levels of children and use of evidence to create ability-based learning groups; level-based learning camps applying the participatory pedagogy (30 days total), and assessing children regularly to promote and re-group as they proceed from one level to another. During COVID closures, combining community learning camps and low-tech innovations using SMS and radio-based learning added to the resilience of this approach. Over 4500 were children reached through community based camps, and 1660 solar-powered radios distributed.
How has it been spreading?
The approach was initially implemented in 60 schools across the 3 counties of Bungoma, Turkana and Tana River. Results from 2018 showed that through the retooled teachers, it was impossible to significantly reduce the proportion of learners without foundational skills within 30 days, informing the decision to expand. As a result, the approach was scaled up to 119 schools in 2020. The number of teachers increased from 84 in 2019 to 161 in 2020. Following demand from other partners, we have trained 5 other civil society institutions, reaching to an estimated 200 schools across East Africa.
If I want to try it, what should I do?
Identify simple assessment tools to establish learning levels
Adapt training manuals
Qualify a pool of master trainers
Use the DIY process to adapt manuals to the implementation context
Induct teachers and offer continuous support in assessment, grouping, goal setting, designing level-based activities and parental engagement
Allow teachers to innovate and adapt strategies that work for them
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