Every facet of daily life in Pakistan has been affected by the devastating floods in 2022. According to The Center for Disaster Philanthropy, at least 7.9 million people were displaced as a result of these floods and an additional 9.9 million people have been at risk of poverty.
Additionally, our educational institutions have suffered; As of October 20, 2022 26,632 schools in the country have been damaged, with 670,000 children affected. With tragic events like natural disasters, pandemics and economic crises personally affecting almost all Pakistanis, millions of families are unable to send their children to schools. As a result, Pakistan has the second-highest number of out-of-school children in the world.
We need to reevaluate our education system as a whole, primarily its level of accessibility if we need to think of a prosperous future. With high fees and recently flood-damaged schools, how do we ensure quality education for all?
The solution: Digital, accelerated learning.
What Is Digital Accelerated Learning?
Let’s unpack “accelerated” learning. Accelerated learning isn’t a program suited only to traditionally “gifted” students. Nor is it a method that pushes a child to learn faster without actually mastering a concept or confidently adopting a skill. Accelerated learning simply:
- Allows students to learn relevant, important skills in less time. This is especially beneficial to students who don’t have the time or resources to attend traditional schools. Accelerated learning allows students to gain the same foundational skills in the matter of a few months, instead of spending more than a year in a classroom.
- Prioritizes material that shows a positive learning outcome. A student should still be able to read at the grade level or complete the mathematical equations the accelerated learning class is for. Accelerated learning with a focus on learner outcomes ensures students have been tested for the material and adopted the skill.
“Digital Accelerated Learning” is simply a subset of Accelerated learning. Digitization of an accelerated program, with an intricate online curriculum focusing on learner outcomes and with available support, allows for greater accessibility. Digital learning also allows for interactive, self-paced learning encouraging curiosity and independence.
What Will Digital Accelerated Learning Look Like In Pakistan?
Digital learning rose internationally during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, many ed tech platforms became popular internationally, offering a digital curriculum while providing instructor support to students as well as parents.
TeeSquare is one of these platforms, offering KG to 2nd Grade education in English, Urdu and Mathematics in just 36 weeks. Once students start learning using Team Taleem , they are enrolled with community partners who support blended learning environments and motivate students. TeeSquare students learn using a learning kit with a tablet, a stylus and headphones to ensure they have the resources to make their experience as engaging and easy to learn as possible. Using a gamified, interactive app that is available offline, students living in remote areas with limited internet accessibility can continue their learning journeys.
Examples of digital, accelerated learning are all around us. All we have to do is pay attention. While traditional schools are playing their role, we should cater to the educational crisis by scaling such flexible educational platforms to ensure ALL our children have access to foundational learning. With our country going through such a critical moment in its history, we can’t continue relying on outdated educational methods. NOW is the time for innovation.