Literacy with WFP
We first met Sumaiya this time last year and came to know about how she is picking up a reading habit. This year, she speaks about how her reading adventure continues. She also has an opinion of her teacher. All on the new video.Video story
To assist the Government of Bangladesh (GoB) in meeting its education targets set out in SDG4, UN World Food Programme (WFP) is implementing their 'School Feeding Programme' – an endeavor that combines 'health and nutrition' as well as 'literacy skills' components for children in pre-primary and primary schools.
USDA/WFP has entrusted Room to Read with the literacy segment of the endeavor. With permission from GoB's Ministry of Education, we are delivering engaging and evidence-based training for teachers to help improve their classroom instruction capacity. As part pf the project, we are supporting head-teachers and officials of the local government with governance, transparency and management practices.
All 87 Government Primary Schools (including 11 Madrasas) in Ukhiya and 59 in Kutubdia sub-districts are included in the project. Given our community-level program planning and review practices, these schools and adjacent communities are our partners in the concerted effort to increase quality literacy and minimize school dropouts. On the statutory level, we are proud to be development partners with the Government of Bangladesh, the United States Department of Agriculture and UN World Food Programme. During the first two years of the project (2018 and 2019), Muslim Aid and Young Power in Social Action were implementing partners. In 2020, the project is being implemented directly by Room to Read.
We have developed 10 new storybooks by consulting the community people and working with local authors and illustrators. These richly illustrated titles feature stories local children can relate to and are awaiting Government signoff.
Through this project, we have organized teacher training on literacy, Bengali reading instruction, the management of classroom library, pedagogy etc. The local government officials and head-teachers also attended.
As the children begin to experience our scientific teaching methods in print-rich classrooms with a library established inside each – we hope to meet toddlers interested to share their experience with us. We will then bring the stories to you.
In the media
Project’s launching event hit local media and a few online media outlets. The ‘program consultation workshop’ with local government officials also made news. As the project progresses, we will be focusing stronger media engagement.
This project comes with many exciting targets – some enlist qualitative change while others are trackable numbers, ranging from training sessions to students’ level of competency. While we conduct an assessment for the latter, we're excited to share the data we have received on a few deliverables.
Over the course of three years, we will directly benefit 45,012 students (of Grade 1 & 2) in 146 institutions. At present, 38,052 (85% of our target) students attend school. We have included all of them in our project.
Early-grade teachers have received training on Bengali literacy instruction, pedagogy and library management. Head-teachers and local government officials of the education sector also received some of these training. We will be on-boarding 146 community mobilizers who will motivate community people to attend school activities, strengthen School Management Committee (SMC), and support teachers in holding literacy-focused events.
NOTE: The ‘target’ numbers (listed under A, B and C program components) are 3-year figures, and the figures in % represent how much of the individual tasks is accomplished. The numbers are of two types: (i) numbers that are to be achieved at the beginning of the project (for example, we have reached all 146 primary education institutions at once and will continue working there till year 2020), and (ii) numbers that would gradually grow and, as expected, match the 'target' figure as the project progresses (for example, we would print and distribute books throughout the project timeline, and also replace damaged/misplaced copies with new ones).
January 2020 will commence with G1 Bangla teacher training. Head teachers will be oriented on literacy-instructions. ToT covering instruction and classroom library will be delivered to GoB officials. Bangla master trainers will be strengthened, and ‘book captains’ – girl and boy student volunteers – will be trained up. To support literacy instructions, we will supply charts and letter cards for G1 and G2. This is besides Pupil Books (G1 P1) for program participants and stakeholders, and Teacher Guides (G1 P1) for teachers alone. Workbook, book checkout and SRM registers etc. will also be distributed. RtR resources will be adapted for Madrasa audience.
In February, training will include G2 Bangla teachers. Besides training on ‘monitoring tools & procedures’ for project staff, book captains’ orientation will include the rest of the schools / madrasas. Pupil Books (G2 P1) will be distributed to students, teachers, staff and officials. Moreover, Exercise Books (G1, G2) and Teacher Guides (G2 P1) will be distributed to students and teachers respectively. Conversation Chart 5, Workbook and other materials will reach schools. Our work to contextualize instruction materials for madrasa will continue. ‘International Mother Language Day’ will be observed and either library launch or Read Play festival will be organized.
In March, we will facelift classroom walls with Grade specific posters on rhymes / poems in a bid to create Print Rich environment. Classrooms supplies will reach students. School bags will be distributed to every student starting from the pre-primary to G5. This is besides the Workbook and other materials. Our exercise relating RtR literacy resource contextualization will complete. Either library opening ceremony or Read Play festival will be organized at the school level. Book shelves (classroom library) needing repair / replacement will be looked after. A minimum of 2 joint monitoring and support visits in Ukhiya and Kutubdia will be carried out. Monthly program review meeting continues.
Project resources are listed in three categories. Do look at our new storybooks produced as part of the project. Below, you can browse for photos and videos highlighting the project's activities and the impact they are having in the lives of children and the community people. And here is our project brochure.