How Global Shapers Ho Hub is bridging the digital gap and preparing students for the Fourth Industrial Revolution
Today, textbooks serve as tools for students in Ghana to study the human anatomy, time travel to the 20th century, history lessons, the great China wall and even explore space.
However textbooks are limited in terms of access and in addition, they limit students’ imagination and make the learning process unengaging.
Through the advent of new technology tools such as videos, educational apps, games with educational contents are being digitized to improve teaching and learning methods. However, these tools are available to only students from high and middle-income families in urban areas whose parents can afford them.
To bridge the digital gap and ensure inclusiveness in our educational sector, the Ho Node, in partnership with Global Shapers Ho Hub, Digital Opportunities Trust, Ghana Think Foundation implemented A- Day-in-Virtual Reality project to introduce students in Rural communities in Ghana to the benefits of taking lessons in the Virtual Reality (VR) World.
The project led by Brian Dzansi, the digital project lead of the Ho Hub, and other volunteers executed on Friday May 12, 2017 is part of efforts by the Global Shapers Ho Hub and Ho Node to stimulate the love for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics among peri-urban students especially girls.
Using a virtual box and a smart phone, 85 junior high school students (45 girls and 40 boys), took the biology lessons in Virtual Reality. They studied the circulatory, skeletal and gastrointestinal system of the human body. The students were drawn from three (3) schools in the Tanyigbe district in the Ho Municipal Assembly of the Volta Region: Tanyigbe EP JHS, Tanyigbye AME Zion JHS and Tanyigbe Dzafe MA Primary School.
A Day in Virtual Reality Project offered the students the opportunity to explore and feel the content of their books; a move away from just learning and imagining the human body anatomy system.
The excitement on the faces of the students and the enthusiasm they showed during the learning process is an evidence of the positive outcomes the use of VR can bring to the teaching and learning methods of “boring” and perceived difficult subjects in schools.
After the project, the students expressed renewed interest in science subjects and STEM related careers especially nursing. It is Ho Node’s believe that the seeds of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) sowed will germinate and grow into increased enrolment in STEM related fields in Senior High and Tertiary school levels especially among the girls.
A Day in Virtual Reality project will be replicated across other schools in the Volta Region in the coming months to ensure no student irrespective of their geographical location is left behind in the digital revolution.
This project is inspired by the World Economic Forum's initiative for Shaping the future of Education,Gender and Work and the Global Shapers Ho Hub’s commitment to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal No. 4 on Quality Education.
ABOUT HO NODE
Ho Node is an inclusive innovation hub in Ho, in the capital city of Volta Region, Ghana. HoNode provides an co-working space for startups; key resources & an enabling environment for ideas to be tested; business development support & digital skills acquisition (www.honode.org)
ABOUT DIGITAL OPPORTUNITIES TRUST (DOT)
DOT is a youth-led movement of daring social innovators. DOT supports youth to become innovators and leaders, and to create and apply digital solutions that have positive impact in their communities, Headquarters in Ottawa, Canada.
ABOUT GHANA THINK FOUNDATION
Ghana Think is an Africa-focused think-tank that seeks to mobilize and deploy talents for the primary benefit of Ghana, and consequently Africa and the Global Community.