The pandemic’s impact on the education system in Bolivia meant that in 2020 schools were closed and that teachers, students, and parents had to face new and different challenges. The challenge of figuring out how to deliver education during an extended ban on in-person learning when there was so little access to and understanding about the use of technology in the country. In the Beni region, the situation is even more complex, as it is one of the areas with the least access to technology in the country, so virtual education has not solved these problems for Beni.
We had to find creative ways to keep classes running. At Alma, we continued our teacher training workshops and expanded it to include how to best use ICT (Information and Communications Technologies). Whether in person or virtual, the overarching purpose of the training is to teach pedagogical strategies for how to achieve meaningful learning.
Since February, we have reached more than 3,000 teachers with virtual media workshops and more than 1,300 teachers with hands-on workshops. Our team is training these teachers in strategies for literacy, reading comprehension, mathematical, logical thinking, and showing creative ways to plan more dynamic classes with prioritized content and with a direct link from scientific knowledge to its practical application in life and daily life of the students.
There is still much to do. We have even more than a year left in the agreement with the Beni Departmental Directorate of Education. We are taking advantage of our access to teachers to re-ignite the creativity and motivation within each of them. We passionately believe that working with teachers is the best way to create meaningful, impactful learning during this pandemic and beyond.
Andrea Blacutt, Project Manager, Bolivia