Friday, November 26, 2010

The Power of a Great Teacher

Next April will mark two years since Proyecto Juan Chacon's 27 XOs first arrived in El Salvador. We learned a very important lesson in the first year that they were in La Cooperativa Juan Chacon: a successful XO / Sugar educational project requires a great teacher. Progress was slow going during the first year. The XOs sat unused far more often then not, since the community really didn't know what to do with them.

That all changed about six months ago when the following occurred:
  • The Juan Chacon Free Software Project formally became part of the non-profit organization, PEACE International.
  • We hired a teacher, Erick Rosales, to go to the community once a week and develop an educational program using free software and Internet access.
Erick is an excellent teacher, and the community project in Chaletanango, El Salvador in moving forward at a wonderful pace, as the young student in this video can attest:

There are some in the Sugar community who believe that putting XOs in the hands of young folks is enough for them to begin learning on their own. Our experience in Los Chilamates suggests that while Sugar is an excellent learning tool, it requires a great teacher to make it come alive.

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