Do check out PEP ASER Test results inforgraphics!
How to analyze the results?
This is the result of the PEP ASER Test conducted recently in the month of May, and compared with the result of government ASER test. The 32 PEP schools that include in the ASER result are those that have SMILE (E-learning) currently running. These inforgraphics show what subjects the students have made progress in, between PEP and Government schools.
Steps to understand the results:
- The PEP Data shows the PEP school results of each subject that were test in schools having E-learning.
- The ASER Data are the government school results that were taken in government schools without E-learning.
-The colors below show the different subjects that were tested.
- Numbers starting from the left is the average.
- One to Five are the classes of PEP and Government schools.
It was not the primary purpose of this assessment to compare PEP with Government schools, but to show the transparency of how the students of PEP schools are making progress in their studies and where they are working on their improvements. Moreover, this assessment is a map to measure the teachers capacity as well as the students learning ability in all subjects (including supplementary curriculum).
With the ASER results at hand, we are now heading toward the 3rd phase of SMILE (E-learning)
The 3rd phase of SMILE means more students will be provided the opportunity to access Android tablet through SMILE plug. PEP has been working in coordination with Concentric Development and was majorly supported by David Weekly Foundation to provide PEP students the access to android tablets and integrating their use in PEP curriculum. The initiative derived a huge impact through remarkably increasing the learning abilities of students that has been shown in the graphs above.
How will the 3rd phase take place:
The 3rd phase will include 4 more schools to the existing 32 PEP schools where students will have the opportunity to use Android tablet for the first time.
What Does the E-learning curriculum involve?
The E-learning curriculum includes Sindhi apps from class beginners to 2 class, English story books, to improve reading skills, Sindhi web contents, and Khan Academy for improving math skills.
When Misree announced that he was going to start a pre-school in his village, the community members did not agree with his plan. And why would they? They had never heard of a pre-school before and Misree's idea sounded foreign to them.
While Misree was still thinking who to hire for teaching the young children, he too had a slight doubt if whether this was going to be successful. But after much convincing and motivating, 10 little students enrolled in his pre-school class, and Misree himself became their teacher.
Misree used his good mind to create local material for teaching toddlers. With his creative mind he made Alphabets and shapes with joining tree branches, and provided sand for his little students to have as much of a natural environment. His classroom is made of a small hut, unlike what a normal urban pre-school would look like, and children sit on the ground, but there is an eagerness to learn in children's eyes.
Misree believes in a simple perception, there is nothing that you can't do.
Opening a pre-school in his village was fulfilling a need as well as passion to find an innovative solution to help students who were dropping out of school. Because most parents work in the fields all day, they prefer for their children to stay home and look after their younger siblings.
And not only this, but a survey identified that students enrolled in schools at an older age are less likely to grasp the basics that are taught in smaller classes. This is because they are not prepared from an early age and by the time they join school in an older age, they don't have the cognitive skills necessary for a child to retain what they learn. And this can affect a child's grades.
Misree's small initiative had a vision, and he was determined to give it a try.
Misree went on teaching his little students for some time but finally found a teacher who was happily willing to teach. This teacher is a little girl herself, a fourth grader, but 12 years old. Her name is Bhagwani and bhagwani teaches other girls as well who dropped out of school.
This was another innovative way to help bhagwani sustain herself as well as developing additional skills, such as: confidence and teaching skills that can help her in future.
When Bahgwani first joined the pre-school, she was very shy and nervous, says Misree. I had to encourage her a lot as she was teaching for the first time and often became nervous, skimming to one place when parents came to see how their children were learning.
But gradually, as she gained more control she developed lots of confidence. Now even if parents come to see their children, she keeps on teaching and doesn't stop.
After a few visits, I noticed a gradual progress in the little students. I was very surprised to see what they had learnt. They were learning the necessary discipline of how to sit in the class and how to greet the teacher, and taking permission for water or toilet was a joy to see. The children were quick in learning through the local material that was provided. They are now able to recognize alphabets and are learning to write counting.
This was a clear indication that pre-school is an important stage for little children as it can greatly help them develop sensory and motor skills, give them a stronger foundation as a beginner, and better prepare them for the elementary phase. Pre-schools with better infrastructure is the need of the hour.
At present PEP is planning to pilot 2 more pre-schools from August 2017 in the different areas of rural Sindh.
Bhagwani's older students who had to drop out of school
My name is Mahira and I live in a small village in Mohammad Achar Khaskheli. I have just finished my high school and I have a dream of joining the Pakistan Army. My parents are a bit dubious about what I feel, but they want to support me in building a career.
My parents have always supported my education although they are uneducated themselves. I was a PEP student as well as my younger siblings who are also studying in a PEP school.
When I had completed my early education I was looking for an opportunity to learn and acquire skills that would help me in further education. My younger siblings are learning through E-learning in their school and when they come home, they share many things about what they learned, like how to operate a tablet, its features and the apps they're using as a part of their curriculum.
I was really curious because when I was studying in a PEP school, we were not introduced to E-learning, and it was difficult as well because we mostly did not have electricity in villages.
But now, the Android tablet has a SMILE Plug that enables it to work in any place, and the students in PEP schools are benefiting by it.
Then I slightly thought to myself, "Can I be able to use it?"
But of course I couldn't, because I was not a PEP student anymore, and I decided to forget about my thought.
But after some months, in a recent visit, we had the PEP team visit our village. And to my surprise, I met miss Lilian Charles!
I felt happy to see her, but at same time I was a shy talking to her. As we got in to a conversation, I figured the conversation led to what I would do now that I've completed high school.
Then it clicked me!
I hesitatingly but decidedly asked if I could have the opportunity to learn how to use an Android Tablet.
I was overjoyed when Miss Lilian appreciated the request I made, and now me along three other fellow PEP graduates are learning how to use the Android tablet together with the Female Adult Literacy Members. We have a class every Thursday from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.
I feel that this opportunity has developed my self confidence and I am able improve my English as well as develop tech skills that will surely benefit me in future. If using Android Tablet is making a difference in my life, it can make a difference for many students like me in rural Sindh.
Mukima is one of those rare women in rural Sindh, who decided to educate her sons as well as her daughters when investing in education was not considered as wise in her community.
Mukima never went to a school but her brother Kanji did, so she could clearly feel the difference between herself and her brother because of education. In Mukima's community, girls were not allowed to be educated due to restrained customs which is why Mukima couldn't get an education , but when PEP began a school in Mukima's village, she was the first woman to send her daughters to school, even when opposition arose from her community members.
Mukima had a choice to make her children work with her in the fields, (as usually parents in villages do) but instead she worked in the fields by herself along with her husband's help, and all her children went to a school. She embraced the challenges that were in her way just to be able to give her children the future she never had. Mukima has three sons and two daughters who are all educated now and even have desirable jobs.
Purkho one of Mukima's sons works with PEP as an Aflatoun Coordinator. Purkho went to a boarding school where he lived away from his mother but she thought it was worth for his future.
Her eldest daughter Padma is a school teacher.
Parsa has been a part of the Women's Empowerment Programme, going village to village promoting girls' education.
Jugdesh the youngest son has just completed his studies.
Mukima's selflessness for her children was because of the deep love that can only be found in motherhood. If motherhood can give children a promising life, how much more can happen when all the mothers of rural Sindh can one day make a big difference in the life of their children by sending them to school!
Share if you agree!
Although March was a busy month for the women doing Adult Literacy training, but what they learned through the training has been far more rewarding.
The Adult Literacy Training has a huge impact on the women who come from different villages. For most women, it was the first ever experience of going out of their village and coming to PEP for training. They were very nervous on their first day of training, and many were only holding a pencil for the first time. However seeing this scenario did not let the trainers down, but with constant encouragement the trainers were helping women to speak, read, and write. The first day of the training began with a group of women who had no idea what they could learn, but the last day of the training there were women who were proudly showing copies of their writing to each other, and sharing much about their experience about the overall Adult Literacy Training.
Speaking their heart out
What does the future of Adult Literacy Education hold for the women of rural Sindh?
The Female Adult Literacy education is like raining opportunity for women in rural Sindh. This is a raining opportunity because women will have long term benefits of education. In many villages, women are still considered as weaker gender who don't not have equal rights as men do, but through the Adult Literacy Education, the women will have their own understanding and knowledge which will open up a way to have their own opinions, and voice. They will have respect, their own identity, and their own position.
The Aflatoun day was a memorable event for PEP students. They had been waiting weeks for the big day to arrive, and finally on 17th March students from different schools gathered together in the PEP hall to celebrate what they call, "Aflatoun Day!"
What did this day look like for PEP students
Aflatoun day was special for PEP students because they got to meet with each other from different villages and learned about each other's Aflatoun groups and activities. This was important for the encouragement and inspiration of all students.
Further, the students were shuffled in groups to get them interact and do things together as a team. They were all gathered in the PEP hall where they got to enjoy different activities such as, face painting, hand tracing drawing, and making Aflatoun charts. What fascinated children the most was getting a unique opportunity to skype with the Aflatoun leaders in the Netherland's and Srilanka. The children were slightly nervous, but extremely excited about the idea of getting to talk face to face with new people.
This opportunity was necessary for students as it made a lasting impact on their memories and encouraged them to continue being Aflatoun members.
Finally, to make Aflatoun day memorable, the children marked the celebration by flying air balloons on the PEP terrace and performed a little cake cutting ceremony.
What is Aflatoun Accomplishing For PEP Students:
Aflatoun is a program known for its major purpose to provide children with Social and Financial Education. This program became a part of PEP in 2012, and has since made a valuable impact on the minds of many PEP students. The Aflatoun program prepares children to live a wiser and successful life through learning from a very interactive curriculum and engaging activities that equip them for the future.
Students who have been taught through this program share testimonies of personal impact for them. Further, the children who are in present the members of Aflatoun every day learn mind-opening concepts that are helping them become a better version of themselves.
The purpose of the visit was to assess the learning progress of women groups from Menghwar village (Khawaja) where PEP started Female Adult Literacy Center last year in 2016. The women of Menghwar community at Khowaja are very active because they know how to use their opportunities. They have recently been provided with the opportunity to use Android tablets and have made a great use of it by integrating the Android Tablets in the Adult Literacy Curriculum.
Before Female Adult Literacy Center was established in Menghwar village, these women were simple house wives, working in their homes and working in the fields, but they had no opportunity to grow. When they heard that an Adult Literacy Center was being opened through PEP, many women expressed their wish to receive an education.
As the Adult Literacy Center opened for women, soon their progress was visible. Women were beginning to read small words and make sentences by themselves. They were beginning to write which was an unbelievable result for most women.
Looking at the great difference they were making in the Adult Literacy Programme, PEP decided to open another great opportunity for women through providing Android Tablets as a part of the Adult Literacy curriculum.
As the women started learning how to use the Android tablet, they shared some wonderful comments about their experience.
"We had no idea that a person can learn almost everything form an Android Tablet. We thought the Android tablet is only shown to us to know what it is, but understanding that we will continue it as a part of our course makes us feel fortunate and happy.
Being able to learn from an Android Tablet is a huge opportunity for women like us because a few years back, unlike the educated we were not even able to hold a pencil. And now having this opportunity has made us believe in ourselves and the people in our village look at us in a very respectful way."
The purpose of providing such opportunities to rural women in Sindh is to empower them and make them believe that they too have a significant purpose in the growth of their society, and that they can use their abilities to bring change.
When during the visit further questions were asked regarding the future of the Adult Literacy Centers, the women shared that they were very keen to continue the centers and were willing to contribute to the cost of buying more tablets.
They are willing to take action and share this course with other women in other villages.
My name is Nena Kumari. I belong to Menghwar community from rural Sindh. I am 10 years old and I study in a PEP school. My father's name is Hero and he is a hand pump mechanic. I am the youngest in my family and the first one out of six siblings to go to a school.
When I was born, my parents were not very happy because I was a girl, but they had to take care of me. When I was growing up, I started helping my mom in taking care of the house. My parents were happy with me until one day I requested them for letting me go to a school.
One day I saw some boys going to school and I peeped through the school window to see what they were learning. I saw that the teacher was using different objects to teach the children which amazed me. I asked my mom if I could join school, but she said no.
I was upset and confused and thought maybe I can talk to my father. When he said that I could go I was very happy, but my mom was not happy with the idea of me going to a school and she tried to convince my father that she needed me at home for work.
My father didn't want to stop me because he thought I was irrational and he was much convinced that a few days I might stop going to school by myself. But I continued and I am still studying.
I remember the first day of my school, I was very happy because the teacher taught lessons through actions, songs, on mud and played games. It was difficult for me to understand first because our teacher taught us in English, but I remember I had started learning to speak broken English in a few months. I was committed with myself that every day I would come to School and learn new words. As I learned to read and write I was able enough to speak in English. My parents could not believe that I was learning so much and when other girls saw me coming to school, some more 15 to 20 girls started coming too.
In our School we have an girls Aflatoun group, of which I am the leader. Every week we arrange a meeting to learn about our problems and how to use our savings properly. I remember my father telling me once that he didn't have money for my School fees and I might have to leave the school. But because of the Aflatoun savings, I told my father that he didn't have to worry about giving my fees. When I paid my own fees my father felt very proud of what I did. That was the day when my father realized the importance of education.
After School when I come at my home do my lunch and teach my older sisters as well. They don't go to a school but they want to learn to read and write. In the evenings I also help my mom to cut grass from field.
Women Empowerment group:
In our village PEP has started a group as "Women Empowerment Group." I also join that group once a month for awareness and importance of education especially for girls. I know it is difficult to encourage the older women but I sit with them and share my thoughts.
My Aim in my life:
Everybody dreams but there are only some people who actually follow their dreams. My dream is to become a TEACHER. The reason why I want to be a teacher is that In our village, people don’t want to send their daughters to school and they are thinking giving education for girls is not important and they don't need it because there first priority is work at home. I have to show all of them through my education and being a teacher. I will teach in this School and also be a role model for villagers and girls.
This month new local teachers are selected from rural Sindh to receive Initial Teacher Training (I.T.E.P) at PEP. The teachers include some of the PEP graduates who have studied in the PEP schools and are now selected to teach in their own school. The purpose for selecting PEP graduates is to help give them an opportunity to use what they've learned for other students and creating a platform to give an experience for better jobs.
I.T.E.P is a unique opportunity for teachers to do something that will change their life because of what they will be giving to their community through education.
In most communities of rural Sindh, many children have been deprived of education for a number of reasons, such as, unawareness, distance, cultural pressures (specifically for girls that push them towards early marriage), bonded labor, and poverty. Due to these sensitive issues, PEP decided to open schools inside villages to give more awareness about the importance of education and helping children to do something better for their life by having an opportunity to receive education.
In addition to schools, PEP has a special outlook for children's academics for which the I.T.E.P course was designed in order to use the effective teaching tools for the growth of children giving them the necessary skills and knowledge to build on for an educated future.
The Initial Teacher Training (I.T.E.P) is a one year course having 5 day residential training 4 times during the year. The 5 day residential training quips teachers for fuel teaching and gives them the ability to make lasting impact on the students of PEP schools.
This video shows the teachers together learning phonics through Letter Land songs.
Love is the best gift the world can ever have.
We hope that Valentine's day must have been a very special day for you, and we too have the perfect Valentine's story to share.
We received a wonderful response from many local supporters as a result of promoting the Gift Box Campaign for PEP students.
The Gift box campaign was part of a local campaign which was set up during mid- October with a focus to encourage and support PEP students. We believe when children in rural areas come to school and work hard despite facing many cultural challenges, an extra cheer would only increase their motivation to study, and keep them in school.
PEP had a target to reach 1000 PEP students till December from different villages in rural Sindh, and share with them Gift Boxes that included school bags, stationary, warm clothes, copies and books.
We promoted and shared the message of our campaign with as many friends as we could, reaching out on facebook, text, emails, cards and even reached people who never knew about PEP before. As days went further, the number of gifts kept growing, heaping up in to rewards for children.
Starting from December, the little gift boxes have been distributed in different schools of PEP and are still being distributed as more boxes from our supporters keep coming in. This is an ongoing campaign that has become a philanthropic culture in PEP as well as a circle of love which we intend for to keep getting bigger this year.
We invite you as well to get involved with us and make this campaign a larger way to share love with the children of rural Sindh.