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Extreme Rural Education Support

Innovation Observe Look & Learn Innovate Facilitate

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200 million children worldwide will not achieve their full potential partly because of poor stimulatory circumstance

UNESCO “ The great problem with fundamental innovation is the tyranny of common sense “

“ How do we educate our children to take their place in the economies of the 21st Century ? The current system of education was designed , conceived and structured in the economic circumstances of the industrial revolution. The problem is that we are trying to meet the future by continuing to do what we have done in the past “ Sir Ken Robinson

To spread knowledge without critical thinking is useless..

“ Every education system in the world is being reformed at this moment and it is not enough reform is of no use anymore. “ Copy Right Reserved

“ You cannot predict the outcome of human development. All you can do is like a farmer create the conditions under which they will begin to flourish .

Sir Ken Robinson

What we need is not evolution but a revolution in education. One of the real challenges is to innovate fundamentally.

When we look at reforming education and transforming it ,it isn’t like cloning a system..

Its about customizing to your circumstances and personalising education to the people you are actually teaching...”

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We realised that by handing out more soccer kits , painting a few classrooms and donating some computers would still mean that almost 20,000 children in the Elim community will have zero benefit from a initiative we would be unable to measure. It brought up visions of a challenge of note but today we are glad we accepted. Once we applied our minds we uncovered and unlocked possibilities that opens up a whole new world of educational support.

EduChess started out as a project to develop a appropriate rural education support concept at Elim a typical rural community in the Limpopo Province South Africa

Our thinking was guided by the intend to develop and facilitate a support concept that SIMULATNEOUSLY can benefit ANY number of learners in participating communities IRRESPECTIVE of their age , gender , location or physical ability. Copy Right Reserved

We spend substantial effort to look & learn. This meant arriving at a clear understanding of the key factors that culminates into poor educational trajectories amongst rural communities.


We engaged more than 3000 learners 300 educators at the forefront of rural education , parents , academics and specialists and universal research data.

We succeeded in the involvement and application of such a diversity of minds . The end result is a empowerment concept that makes sense from almost every important perspective. Copy Right Reserved

The Achievement Gap phenomenon..

John Hopkins University research Sociologist Karl Alexander

“ For school improvement, to be fully effective it must be complemented by a broader definition of schooling and by improvements in the social and economic circumstances of disadvantaged youth “

“ Virtually all of the advantage that wealthy kids have over poor kids result from differences in the way privileged kids learn while they are not in school ”

Broader, Bolder Approach to Education statement U.S.A Copy Right Reserved

Our observations in rural schools lead to us become convinced that a sustainable support concept should have a extra curricular focus with minimum intrusion into actual classroom teaching. Quality conventional classroom learning represents about 10% of the typical rural learners time. Any sustainable support initiative should not further extend educators capacities

In typical rural communities almost no appropriate stimulation or UpSkill activity takes place outside a classroom.

Education should be about giving children the means to become free , dignified , to become a human being that with autonomy can act with courage to change society , to reform society towards a better life.

How to support the confrontation of rural realities that defeats potential was considered analysed , researched and contemplated. During conceptualisation our considerations included widespread participation, affordability , sustainability , quality outcomes , progress measurement, project management structures and potential for replication . Copy Right Reserved

Cognitive deprivation renders rural children less able to benefit from significant investments in public education.

The EduChess concept is developed to compliment and support investments in specialised and expensive remedial education interventions.

Cognitive deprivation

Cognitive deprivation

The EduChess rural support concept is designed to assist with confronting the devastating effect of cognitive under preparedness

Cognitive deprivation and under preparedness counter balances the investment of millions in the reformation and improvement of public educational systems Copy Right Reserved

Working Memory The ability to hold task relevant information while processing it.

Extra Curricular UpSkill effort inspired.

88% of learning difficulties are caused by weak cognitive skills. Increased studying, tutoring or classroom accommodations have little or no effect on cognitive skills which means.. until cognitive skills are improved students will fall further and further behind.

Central Processing Speed To encode , categorize and understand the meaning of sensory stimuli

UpSkill parents cultivated Visuospatial Visuospatial Classification Classification To discriminate between visual objects based upon a concept or rule

CHESS represents a affordable, cognitive remedial support opportunity in a extra curricular competitive and friendly social environment. Alternating Alternating Attention Attention

Irrespective of physical ability

The ability to shift the focus of attention quickly. Copy Right Reserved

Global research confirmation Chess rapidly develops... Analytical thinking Abstract thinking

After an exhaustive global search for appropriate interactive and instructional UpSkill mechanisms that has withstood extensive scrutiny , we were unable to find anything that even remotely compares with Chess

Interactive Instructional

Problem solving Reasoning Memory Pattern recognition Mathematical orientation.

“ Chess develops a new form of thinking, and this exercise is what contributes to increase the intelligence quotient “

Social integration. Creativity. Independent thinking. Intuition. Concentration. etc.etc.

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Chess provides a complete learning cycle . Similar to mathematics.


Learn the rules Apply the rules 4 Solve the problem. Immediate feedback through punish or reward consequence for options selected.


1 Chess represents a complete learning cycle . Due to particular constraints the all important feedback stage suffers in rural classroom environments

Any UpSkill support approach that requires conventional teaching practices involving paid tutors , classroom settings, transporting of children would not work considering the realities one has to content with in typical rural environments. Copy Right Reserved

Following our rural observations we concluded that any rural support innovation depending upon conventional tutoring practices involving paid tutors , classroom set ups , transport etc. would be very difficult to sustain.

We continuously witnessed the rapid and exponential spreading of chess rules by mother tongue speaking children. This is promptly followed by continuous and inspired extra curricular effort invested in UpSkill activity . It seemed as if we were unable to exhaust their excitement and desire to compete . Parents , friends , and family soon joined in demonstrating a cohesive sense of purpose and collective commitment towards UpSkill achievement. Copy Right Reserved

Children thrives on recognition. This is a universal and primary motivational driving force . The EduChess progressive UpSkill identity is designed to afford children the opportunity of widespread UpSkill recognition and reputation among the people that represents their entire social universe during their formative years.

Certificates Caps Shirts Armbands Sponsor Alignment


“ A visual and true reflection of skill Irrespective of age , gender , location , social standing or physical ability “

Chess has this universal image of cleverness or being smart attached to it. This perception extends to rural communities in Africa. It possesses such huge potential to mobilise entire communities

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Tshimbupfe Primary Previous 13400 Current 18200

Patwini Secondary Previous 11,700 Current 11,700 Waterval Primary Previous 108,300 Current 119,200 Elim Community Total Previous 290,600 Current 324 , 200 Total UpSkill Gain 33, 600

Hlanganani Secondary Previous 22,000 Current 26,900

Lemana Primary Previous 42,200 Current 46,900

Mashau Secondary Previous 7,900 Current 11,800

Elim Secondary Previous 128,000 Current 133,000

Lemana Secondary Previous 66,700 Current 68,900

Bongeni Primary Previous 8,700 Current 10,900 Bokisi Secondary Previous 9,700 Current 9,700

EduChess Skills Gain Report per school Period : Jan to March The EduChess Progressive Skills measurement application platform provides continuous participation and ACTUAL progressive UpSkill data accessible via the Project Website by Project Partners , research institutions ,

government , sponsors etc. Copy Right Reserved What we can measure we can manage

The EduChess support concept includes collaboration with educators to simultaneously provide learners with access to pre prepared and web based assignment aligned information so that rural educators can incorporate assignments into lesson plans aimed at the development of vital tertiary skill associated with sourcing , analysing and critical evaluation of information.

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The EduChess concept and delivery platform provides rural children with a UpSkill destination and a sense of belonging. UpSkill membership provides rural children with the opportunity of association with a collective UpSkill vision together with other children . The universal progress assessment and visual reward mechanism also contributes towards counter balancing the negative effects and inspirational void associated with absent migrant worker parents.


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What we did was taking Chess to a next level We developed a team sport variant we call ArenaChess. It involves eight players in two teams of four aside. The concept brings exciting dynamics normally associated with teamsports such as soccer to chess. The reaction of spectators during our pilot tournaments was most revealing .

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“ Since the EDUchess project has started a few years ago I have consulted and became involved in its approach. From an educative perspective I believe that the EDUchess initiative has the potential to make a positive change in the lives of so many underprivileged and environment deprived learners with potential “

Professor Trudie Steyn South Africa’s leading authority on Invitational Education. University Of South Africa

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“ This project, to my mind, potentially has far-reaching implications in preparing the youth for success in higher education, their eventual careers, and life in general. “ Professor Herman J. Pietersen ( D.Com) Program in Human Resource Management, Department of Business Management, University of Limpopo

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UpSkill Role Models

UpSkill desire

Facilitators Transport

UpSkill Expectation

Extreme circumstance

Observation Copy Right Reserved


Johan & Magriet Concept originator


Branded ChessCubes

Extreme Education

Migrant worker parent

ArenaChess Schools Pilot Tournament

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Inter Generation UpSkill Vision

Social UpSkill destination

Universal image of cleverness

Research facilitators training

Extra curricular Upskill destination

Inter racial UpSkill Vision Copy Right Reserved


Local research facilitators

Extra curricular

Digital Library Assessment Rewards

ArenaChess pilot Tournament

Observation 55 Schools

Sponsor friendly rural delivery platform

Local business support Copy Right Reserved

In appreciation

In appreciation of research sponsors

For full details about the EduChess UpSkill support innovation contact The Concept originator and developer .

Johan Esterhuizen (e mail jaester @ ) Copy Right Reserved

EduChess Rural Education Support Innovation  

Gallery about the EduChess rural education support concept developed at Elim a typical rural community in the Limpopo Province South Africa....

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