Improving education with “Raspberry Pi”
Government of Ghana
Around the world, tutors and teachers routinely use the Internet to find useful resources for their own professional development.
In principle, Ghana’s 38 Colleges of Education should all be connected to the Internet, but in practice there are obstacles in the way of high-speed low-cost Internet access. For many teacher colleges, including the most remote or under-resourced, the Internet is likely to remain a constrained resource for years to come.
Cambridge Education manages the Government of Ghana’s four-year Transforming Teacher Education and Learning (T-TEL) program supported by the British government. T-TEL is using insights into cutting-edge mobile technology to increase access to information on quality education, to support effective teaching and learning, and to build communities of practice among tutors in Ghana — faster and more cost-effectively.
Through the program, colleges get access to a selection of educational resources using a low-cost computer called The Raspberry Pi. Developed at the University of Cambridge and managed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation, the device is a low-cost “single-board” computer the size of a credit card.
Building on the work of Open Learning Exchange Ghana, a global nonprofit that helps children acquire basic educational skills, the Raspberry Pi connects to the College WiFi network — or creates an independent WiFi network. This provides access to educational resources, such as materials for tutors and teachers, information from Wikipedia, and T-TEL materials and publications. Tutors and students have access to resources whether or not the college has a working Internet connection.
T-TEL is also providing a class set of tablets to each college. Professional development sessions show tutors how to use the tablets as teaching resources. This might include using GeoGebra (an interactive mathematics application) to plan a lesson on circumference and finding the areas of shapes.
The Raspberry Pi system and tablets help equip colleges to deliver a better level of teacher education. They demonstrate the value of technological resources and digital learning in teacher education, helping colleges see the value of embedding these practices into their teaching curriculum.
The technologies allow the same high level of teaching to be equally available at all 38 colleges. By using them, tutors can lay the groundwork for the expansion of connectivity and technology in colleges for the future.