iSchool

Wisdom is an ability to use other peoples’ experiences and life lessons to improve our own experience through life.

It is not in everybody’s interest to spread this kind of knowledge, however. The marketeer jealously guards the sources and prices of his merchandise in order to make a profit. The despot uses ignorance and fear of punishment in order to maintain his iron grip on his country. The jealous lover wants the object of his love to believe that she will never find anyone like him out there. The proud youth thinks there is nothing a shrivelled old lady can teach him. The fearful parent teaches his son that he runs the danger of being struck blind if he ever looked at a naked adult. Every lie is a manipulation. The motivation varies. Ignorance slows down the development of the whole human race.

A whole subset of the human languages has developed around certain professions leading to the “small print” or technical jargon that intimidates ordinary mortals into continuing to seek the services of the middle man – the lawyer, priest, financial consultant, doctor, etc. Not explaining the small print clearly works in their interest. They pass every opportunity to explain in plain language in order to maintain their grip on the clients by perpetuating their ignorance.

Education is a social solution providing knowledge on a massive scale to benefit as many people as possible. Yet even it has been alleged to be tailored to produce production line employees who can take over when the initial one is sick or retires on account of old age. That it is not tailored to enriching the human mind.

Education is a tool that can be used to imprison or to improve the mind. Technology is improving really fast. It is being used to make education better and faster. Sharing information has never been easier. This is just the beginning of things to come. Educators and administrators will have a duty to bring about this new way of learning. Individuals can also play a big role in the process.

Mark Bennett who died in Lusaka on 10th February, 2015 aged 61, was an individual who is an example of the latter category. A former lecturer in the computer department at the University of Zambia, Mark was the founder of ZAMNET, Zambia’s first Internet provider. He later founded iSchool. He brought low cost, energy efficient tablet computers (ZEduPad) to primary schools in vernacular languages. He contributed significantly to the development of elearning in Zambia. The work he started continues under new leadership. His dream deserves to live on because it will benefit so many people.

Children who are exposed to this modern technology so early in life will surely have a more positive relationship with technology for longer.

Have you used iSchool? We would like to hear from you. Share that experience with us.

Read my earlier post on eBook Readers in Zambian Schools here.

 

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