Digital Literacy Creates Opportunities for Learners in Pakistan
Information & Communication Technology (ICT) has tremendous potential to contribute to knowledge dissemination, effective learning, and the development of more efficient education services. Today’s teachers must be prepared to provide technology-supported learning opportunities to their students in order to deliver the skills required by the modern knowledge economy. Being prepared to use technology, and understanding how technology supports student learning, must be an integral part of every teachers professional repertoire. These trends, which are rapidly influencing countries around the world, are also quickly taking root in Pakistan and have the potential to significantly boost the skills of Pakistani students and teachers.
In an effort to support education, advocacy, and technology access Intel joined hands with one of the largest school system in Pakistan, the TME Millennium Education to drive systemic education transformation and prepare teachers and students for the needs of the future.
Intel has been working to bring computers, Internet access, and digital learning to students all across Pakistan since 2001, giving youth in urban and rural regions new opportunities to thrive in the 21st century information society. At the same time, Pakistan must develop a better educated and skilled workforce that can support the country’s continued economic growth, develop effective policies critical to establish the conditions for success and to accelerate transformation, create new curriculum standards and assessment that will help transform the education system to meet the demands of a globally competitive environment, and a train quality teaching workforce that is imperative to enable a quality education system.
- Equipping K-12 students with ICT skills and delivering effective integration of ICT in schools, promoting ICT as a common denominator to bridge the digital divide
- Shifting pedagogies by redesigning the curriculum and assessment
- Bringing the future within reach for thousands of young millennial students through fun, interactive information & innovative activities
- Promoting critical thinking, technology literacy, and collaboration amongst students and thus nurture their inherent curiosity to release their potential
- Engage schools to help build teacher capacity and support staff through in-service professional development to enable teachers to involve ICT readily in all subject areas
- Embed ICT within curriculum through Intel & TME Millennium Schools ICT Curriculum Development Process
- Deliver resources and infra-structure to allow teachers to become familiar with ICT and learn how to integrate it into the curriculum
- Empower subject leaders to expand their resources with reference to ICT
- Teachers enabled to play a pivotal role in the integration of ICT in the school curriculum and assessment process
- Roots ICT Programme is integrated with academics and curriculum of all subjects, not only taught as a separate subject
- Increased student confidence to present ideas, use digital literacy, and become self-evaluators, critical thinkers and collaborators
Technology is capable of transforming the classroom environment and has distinct advantages that enhance the teaching and learning process. Pakistan’s education policy affirms the country’s vision to deliver education opportunities for all its citizens. Many programs have been launched by the federal and provincial governments to achieve these goals. Yet, the country has continued to lag behind others that have successfully developed “Knowledge Economies”.
One reason for this slow progress is that the approach towards teaching in Pakistan has remained very traditional; focused on rote memorization as a means of transferring book knowledge only. However, at the TME Millennium Schools, the teachers have been trained through the Intel Teach Program. The TME Millennium Schools is a group of education institutions which focuses on building the professional capacity of teachers so they can give their students a modern education which is capable of preparing them for 21st century challenges.
The TME Millennium Education renewed its vision of ICT in Education and recognized how it could contribute to the objectives they have for the schools development. The ICT curriculum needed to be updated to keep pace with the advances in technology and the pupils increased knowledge and abilities.
The Millennium Institute of Professional Development entered into a MoU with Intel Pakistan to collaborate on curriculum development and teacher training in March 2009. A project office was established at the TME Head Office under the authority of Department of Quality, Curriculum and Assessments (DQCA) and consisted of four ICT subject specialists as well as curriculum research officers from TME Schools and Intel.
Through the project office, the school developed a framework, based on Intel Teach Skills for Success course, to brainstorm ideas for content, curriculum, and activity development.
Regular and continuous professional development has enabled the schools’ shift to a student focused learning approach. Changes in the assessment strategies placed more emphasis on pupil self-assessment and meeting targets set through shared rubrics. As a result, students have a better understanding of what is expected and what the next steps will be. Learning has become more exciting, relevant, and fun. Students utilize technology to access a wide range of information and to enable them to unleash their creativity.
The students are becoming ‘Digital Natives’ and are more productive 21st century learners; they are self-evaluators, problem solvers, critical thinkers and collaborators which use technology as medium of learning.
The school now demonstrates the true ICT in Education paradigm; That learning to access and analyze ‘Information’ for the purposes of ‘Communication’ using ‘Technology’ equals the skills for success in the Knowledge Economy.
TME and Intel Teacher Training Initiatives
The management of TME Millennium Schools ensures that every student has access to a computer and all new teachers joining the school receive training on Intel Teach Program Courses to prepare them to participate in the updated teaching methodologies of the school.
Through the Intel Education Initiative, Intel Pakistan conducted a number of trainings at TME Schools including the Intel Teach Essentials, Thinking with Technology, Intel Teach Getting Started, and Intel Teach Skills for Success courses for teachers, as well as several Principals Hands-on workshops for the benefit of the administrators. These courses enabled the teachers to develop student centered learning and project-based approaches which integrated technology in the learning environment.
The partnership has delivered a robust education transformation process across all the grades in all the branches and campuses under the system, more than 15,000 students from Grade 1 to Grade 8 are using Intel and TME Intel Teach Skills for Success course content on an annual basis.
The implementation of Intel Teach Skills for Success Course in the TME Schools delivered significant benefits to the teachers by improving computer skills, and creating a more effective and interesting learning environment for the students. The implementation and practice of using Intel Teach Skills for Success helped teachers to implement technology-supported project-based learning in the new standards-based environment.
Transforming the TME education process required the support of the school and district level administrators and the local community. Now that the new program is in place, the TME Schools administrators and teachers are continuing to learn from the experience and share their results with their local community and the greater education community. The lessons learned from this experience are valuable in guiding other organizations who are seeking to modernize their education processes.
Intel® Teach Program in Pakistan
The Intel® Teach Program was launched in Pakistan in 2001. Through collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Education more than 325,000 in-service and pre-service teachers have been trained to date.
The Intel® Education Initiative
The Intel® Education Initiative is Intel’s sustained commitment to prepare all students, everywhere, with the skills required to thrive in the knowledge economy by improving teaching and learning through the effective use of technology, as well as working to promote the study of science, technology, engineering and math. Through sustained public-private partnerships with educators and governments in more than 70 countries, Intel invests approximately USD $100 million per year in education programs designed to address the needs of each country and to advocate for 21st century educational excellence through policy work and awareness efforts.
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For more information on the Intel Teach Program,
For more information on the Intel & TME Intel Teach Skills for Success Program