Kannada-medium students learn Queen's English the king's way

Digital teaching

Kannada-medium students learn Queen's English the king's way
Learning Queen’s English does not mean classroom monologue for students at a Kannada-medium school in Bengaluru. They are learning the language with a digital teaching tool that gives them multi-sensory experience.

In a small classroom at the Government Higher Primary School in Channasandra, students appeared enthusiastic as their classes were to begin. The wall turned into a book with text projected on it.

Ask students which is their favourite subject and most of them say English. From prose to poems, they learn it all with the digital education tool. While other students of their age learn poems by heart, girls at this school learn it through pictures.

ReadToMe, a technology platform developed by EnglishHelper Technologies Pvt Ltd, is designed to improve reading, comprehension and spoken English skills. It helps Kannada-medium students follow the language better.

“If I go to America, I will speak English. That is why English is important,” said Naveen, a class 7 student, when DH visited the school during a teaching session. The platform not only helps students pronounce individual words, it also gives pictorial representation and translation in the local language.

Sponsored by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the technology platform has been put to use by RightToRead (RTR), a national initiative that enables the use of reading technology in government schools.

More than 5,000 students from Karnataka, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Punjab and three other states have been given access to this digital platform to learn English. In Karnataka, there are 10 other government schools where digital teaching methods are being used to help students learn English. The platform is first installed in schools and teachers are later trained briefly.

Vineet Mehra, vice president, EnglishHelper Technologies Pvt Ltd, said the initiative was aimed at helping government school students speak English confidently like their private school peers. “We believe that language empowers people. Currently, students of classes 6, 7 and 8 are part of this initiative as the entire English syllabus has been provided in a digitised form,” he added.

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