World Education is dedicated to improving the lives of the poor through education, and economic and social development programs.

Facebook    Twitter    LinkedIn    YouTube    Pinterest    Instagram

From Literacy Classes to Learning Carnivals

Literacy classes get parents more involved in their children's education.

For adult learners, the classroom presents challenges different from those of younger students. Adults have greater responsibilities at work and home which compete with their focus on school. For some, the frustrations of learning can outweigh the joys—though when there are creative answers to making literacy classes more interesting, those frustrations can be abated. To better engage learners, World Education has developed the “learning carnival” approach through the Egypt Education Reform Program (ERP). Learning carnivals are an innovative classroom methodology that transforms literacy classes from a traditional educational environment to one in which learners play, laugh, and learn with others, while also acquiring information and skills. Teachers notice that not only are classes more fun, but students actively participate and develop skills more quickly. The carnivals also help keep current learners in literacy classes and motivate new students to enroll.

Literacy classes get parents more involved in their children's education. At the learning carnival, educational games and activities focus on topics such as child rearing, early childhood development, and environmental issues. They can also include how to make simple educational toys from local materials and how to play games at home with children. Practicing new literacy skills through arts and crafts and acquiring vocational skills such as sewing are also part of the carnivals. In addition, each carnival has puppet shows dealing with specific issues relevant to the learners’ lives, such as the importance of literacy and the issuance of identification cards. Also covered are sensitive topics, such as early marriage, which are difficult to discuss in traditional class rooms, but become easier to discuss when performing role-playing skits that reflect the realities of daily life.

World Education is working with the Adult Education Authority in Egypt as part of the ERP, a five-year program funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), to improve the quality of Egypt’s education system. Key parts of the program are increasing enrollment, learner retention, and success rates of adult students entering community literacy classes. World Education supports the Adult Education Authority by helping to engage community members and parents in literacy initiatives.

"I realize the importance of learning in my life. It is a chance to have a better future." --Adult Learner, Egypt Education Reform Project

Through games and activities, adult students improve their literacy skills and discuss issues important in their lives.

World Education helps literacy teachers promote active learning, which engages students and teachers alike by linking content to songs, games, and even dance. Active learning also places the student at the center of the learning process, and encourages reflection, discussion and collaboration. Over the past two years, World Education and the Adult Education Authority have stimulated an impressive demand for literacy classes with fun, creative activities including learning carnivals.

Through games and activities, adult students improve their literacy skills and discuss issues important in their lives.

Illiteracy often deters parents, especially women, from advocating for their children’s education and becoming involved in school committees. With the confidence they gain in the classroom, women are able to advocate for better classroom conditions, training for teachers, and additional resources. Participants in the program share new skills with their children and become more involved in their education, which is part of the Egypt Education Reform Program’s overall goal to improve community participation in education. As one learner says, "We are better able to help our children with their education."