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Innovative Skype project in Jaffna

(February 21, 2011)

Oru Paanai using Skype to connect with classroom in Jaffna

It has been lately acknowledged in Sri Lanka that the teaching of English is vital. English is hardly spoken in rural homes and children are not exposed to hearing the language being spoken. Teaching a language that is not commonly spoken is indeed very challenging.
 
In Jaffna and many rural areas English teachers are few and need help and encouragement.
 
Taking the idea from “the “Hole in the wall” project of Prof Sujata Mitra of Newcastle University, Skype connections have been established with Senguntha Hindu College in Thirunelvely and with National College of Education in Kopay.
 
Volunteers from the UK could connect with a small class room in Sri Lanka and have a dialogue in English with students. This is what we have been able to do.
 
Two large TV monitors with 42" screen were given to these colleges and Skype connections were made through Dialog dongle. Both colleges are eager and are very appreciative of the Skype classes. It is early days.
 
Our hope is that we can encourage spoken English, which then makes it so much easier then to learn to read and write.

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