An Introduction into the Teacher's Communities of Learning Project

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The Teacher's Communities of Learning Project aims to initiate computer aided learning in Government School Classrooms as well as introduce the idea of teachers networks among 35-40 teachers in one of the blocks in Bangalore. The project began in March with an orientation workshop where we introduced teachers to the project idea. This was met with a mix of enthusiasm and confusion at the same time. Here we were trying to ask teachers what they want for their own professional development and they kept telling us what they want for the children in the classroom! (This is but one of the many challenges the project faces). The month after this workshop was spent on school visits, where we saw the situation of computers in the schools, discussed general school issues, interacted with the teachers and the HMs of the schools. The picture on the left is not an anomaly. In a lot of schools, computers are kept along with utensils, other school items and even sewing machines! This coupled with the fact that teachers are not adequately trained to use the computers leads to non-use and sometimes mis-use as well. (We even found videos of porn in one computer). Thus, the future success of this project lies in getting teachers excited about using computers and interacting with one another. The former seems easier to do as interest in computers has always been there. The networking bit however might prove to be a tough nut to crack. Suggestions, Comments welcome!