Menu
Home

World

Tablet as teacher: Illiterate Ethiopian kids learn to speak, write in English with computers

  • dcf7e7c2050f8524240f6a706700b1b8.jpg

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, children play with tablet computers given to them by the One Laptop Per Child project in the village of Wenchi, Ethiopia. The project gave tablets to the children in the poor, illiterate village to see how much the children could teach themselves and now many kids can recite the English alphabet and spell words in English. (AP Photo/Jason Straziuso)The Associated Press

  • 3e3e2c3505118524240f6a706700deda.jpg

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, a boy looks for his tablet computer as others play with theirs which were given by the One Laptop Per Child project in the village of Wenchi, Ethiopia. The project gave tablets to the children in the poor, illiterate village to see how much the children could teach themselves and now many kids can recite the English alphabet and spell words in English. (AP Photo/Jason Straziuso)The Associated Press

  • b644198e050f8524240f6a70670072b2.jpg

    In this photo taken Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2012, a boy plays with a tablet computer given to the children by the One Laptop Per Child project in the village of Wenchi, Ethiopia. The project gave tablets to the children in the poor, illiterate village to see how much the children could teach themselves and now many kids can recite the English alphabet and spell words in English. (AP Photo/Jason Straziuso)The Associated Press

The kids in this volcano-rim village wear filthy, ragged clothes. They sleep beside cows and sheep in huts made of sticks and mud. They don't go to school. Yet they all can chant the English alphabet, and some can spell words.

The key to their success: 20 tablet computers dropped off in their Ethiopian village in February by a group called One Laptop Per Child.

The goal is to find out whether children using today's new technology can teach themselves to read in places where no schools or teachers exist. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers analyzing the project data say they're already impressed with the results. They say the kids have already learned more than they would have in one year of kindergarten.