Guided English Reading Program

Program Owner: Isra Akhtar


Program Type: Education

Focus Group: Children

Start Date: Nov 01,2019

End Date: Dec 31,9999

Location: Online & Lahore

Contact Person: Waqar Afzal

Updates


Program Description
This is a Guided English Reading Program to help improve English reading skills for school going children in Pakistan.

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Goals and Objectives
Problem Statement
Currently, Pakistan has the world’s second-highest number of out-of-school children (OOSC) with an estimated 22.8 million children aged 5-16 not attending school, representing 44 per cent of the total population in this age group. In the 5-9 age group, 5 million children are not enrolled in schools and after primary-school age, the number of OOSC doubles, with 11.4 million adolescents between the ages of 10-14 not receiving formal education. Disparities based on gender, socio-economic status, and geography are significant; in Sindh, 52 percent of the poorest children (58 percent girls) are out of school, and in Balochistan, 78 percent of girls are out of school [UNICEF]. The school system is generally behind in meeting international standards, many students fail their IELTS English proficiency test, and memorization rather than understanding is widely encouraged. The education system is falling short of adequately addressing these systemic problems.

Purpose Statement
Among many other important skills, knowledge of the English language has become an indispensable tool for personal and professional success in today's hyper globalized world. Thus, the purpose of this program is to address the needs of students as they relate to the English language, particularly English literacy. Our goal is to provide international standard English language training online through certified programs and experts in Pakistan to students in grades 6 to 12 in order to enhance their language competency.

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Program Activities
This program is delivered online in 6 days/week sessions, focusing on particular language components. For example: pronunciation, speaking, vocabulary, writing, or listening, among others.

Student activities are supervised by Canadian Certified English teachers with help from teacher assistants in small groups of 4 to 6 students. Here are a few examples of online materials students use for self-learning:

- Reading short articles daily at Readworks.Org (provides audio, text, vocabulary, comprehension questions from K to 12);
- Reading books at KidsA-Z.com (provides e-books of 26 levels of difficulty);
- Google Classroom (connects students with teachers to share materials, submit assignments, and receive feedback);
- Coursera (provides online courses related to langugage programs);
- YouTube Channels (selected channels for best chosen materials to support growth and self learning).

An extensive preparation before and after the 6 weekly sessions is undertaken by the Program Coordinators:
- providing oral and written feedback;
- maintaining an updated database of lesson plans and student progress;
- coordinating and completing administrative tasks to deliver excellence, including disciplining students, completing parent calls for feedback, and budgetary matters;
- guide students to learn as individuals and in group study, teamwork, note taking and use of planners;
- and other responsibilities.

and Students:
- submitting oral and written homework on schedule;
- coming prepared for the 6 weekly sessions;
- asking questions and seeking assistance from teachers and fellow students as needed;
- actively participate in personal development roles including student leaders;
- and other responsibilities.

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Program Coordinators
1. Waqar Afzal (wafzal1970@gmail.com)
2. Ali Chatha (markhamyouthfoundation@gmail.com)
3. Imran Muzaffar (imranmuzaffar@hotmail.com
4. Saima Saleem (semi.saima123@gmail.com)

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Admission Requirements
1. Grade 6-10 students.
2. Basic ability to read, speak, and write English.
3. Commitment to attend all classes, 6 days per week.
4. Commitment to allocate 30 minutes time for daily homework
5. Commitment to teach new students as participating students master new skills
4. Pay monthly fee of Rs. 400 if able to pay (money goes towards meeting the expenses like teacher salary and website licenses)

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Program Cost
The cost of executing this program is $500 CAD monthly detailed as follows:
- $400 for expert teachers and instructors;
- $100 for incentivizing and rewarding students.

An additional cost of $300 yearly is for classroom licenses for 36 students (Raz-Plus online books and others).

Any surplus money will be spent towards providing financial support to deserving students (covering fees, purchasing technology) and improving the program.

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Current Program Needs
1. Canadian students from grades 6-12 who are willing to pair online with students in Pakistan (4-8 hrs/wk).
2. Teachers, tutors, and educators who are willing to help in teaching and training the students online (6-10 hrs/wk).
3. Partnerships with schools and academies in the delivery and promotion of this program (materials and training will be provided).

You can help reward this effort by contributing with your time or your pocket towards empowering disadvantaged students. You can contribute with cash to Waqar Afzal or e-transferring an amount to wafzal1970@gmail.com.

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Success Criteria
Students are monitored and provided daily feedback on their participation, discipline, and organizational skills. The basis of the success criteria will be three assessments, first one completed in the beginning, second in the middle, and third at the conclusion of the program. These assessments will measure students on the following benchmarks: reading, listening, speaking, and writing.

Success in this program is certainly to enhance the student's overall academics and life skills.

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