EUREKA SUPERKIDZ, TAMIL NADU TRANSFORMING LIVES THROUGH EDUCATION
Project Rationale One major solution to a large number of social issues including poverty is education. In the poorest of villages in Tamil Nadu, children from marginalized families face a lot of disadvantages in their childhood. The quality of education provided by government schools is hardly adequate. These children grow up without access to some basic facilities like books or toys! They do not have good teachers to provide them a strong educational foundation. Their parents, being poor and illiterate are not able to provide them intellectual support either. Although 99.2% of these children go to schools, only 32.3% in standard five can read standard two text books and only 14.2% of them can solve a division problem. A group of IIT and BITS alumni recognized the need of the era for providing after-school support to the children from these villages to improve the quality of their childhood and to make their knowledge-gaining process productive and fun at the same time. Project Objectives and Strategy 1. Provide educational support for children who are first generation learners from marginalized families in villages 2. Reach out to the poorest villages where the monthly family incomes amount to Rs. 2500 3. Train motivated tutors from the village- a grassroots initiative-to empower them to teach and take care of the children’s intellectual growth 4. Hold after-school classes for about 60 students through standards 1-8 to help them cope up with their daily curriculum 5. Follow interactive and fun-activity oriented teaching strategies involving scientific experiments, practical math training and individual workbooks 6. Track individual child’s progress using the Eureka Skill Chart- gauge progress with the child’s personal record over time 7. Spend more time with children lagging behind 8. Improve local accountability and inculcate ownership in parents: collect a small fee of Rs. 30 (~50 cents) every month to support tutors’ stipends. Parents who realize the importance of education for their children are ready to help out with the initiative.
Project Timeline: January 2012- December 2013 This will be a continuing project funded by the AID LA-OC chapter Project Cost: US $8,000 $1000/Eureka Superkidz center in a village/year AID LA-OC aims at adopting 8 villages Specific areas of funding: Instructor honorariums, printing reading materials (text books, experimental setups, progress/evaluation cards, etc.), snacks for students
Major Accomplishments: 1. About 75000 children access high quality learning resources- reached about 1000 villages 2. About 18000 teachers have been trained in improved and innovative teaching methods 3. Titles: books, kits and activities have been published across Tamil Nadu 4. Std. VI Math text book has been written by AID India 5. 175 TV episodes: 4 years of monthly Science experiments have been broadcast on Sun TV 6. 15% higher district-wide impact in reading levels in 10 districts following 3 years of reading program compared to the rest of the state of TN 7. Improved Math, Science, reading and cognitive skills seen overall in children who are a part of the Eureka Suprekidz 8. Highest score (94%) seen from a Eureka student from Manjakollai village- government has awarded him the opportunity to study in a school of his choice until standard 12 9. Random testing for feedback in PPMottur village showed impressive results 10. Community involvement seen: including donations of good storybooks from youth clubs. One of the notable ones being the panchayat president of Kollathur using the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGA) to construct a Eureka center. 11. Several examples and impact stories: 8-year old hearing impaired child learning to speak, tutor carrying out her passion for teaching and enrolling in a BA degree course despite
her disability, Citibank volunteers conducting a workshop on banks for the children, hundreds of children seeing steady progress in Math, Science and reading skills, etc. Activities in Progress: 1. At the dawn of a new academic year (June 2012)- centers got children to re-join the program- these included door-to-door campaigns 2. Tutors were trained on subjects and also to gain a strong understanding of the purpose of the program. They were also trained to organize meetings and interact with the childrenâ€™s parents Project Partner: AID India http://www.eurekachild.org http://www.eureka.aidindia.in
At the Teaching Centers
Learning Is Fun!!!