Posts tagged textbooks

In the Philippines, returning to school following Typhoon Haiyan (by UNICEF)

“I am happy to be back to school because my classmates survived,” says Alexa, 8.

In areas of the Philippines affected by the typhoon, about 90 per cent of school buildings were damaged – more than 3,200 schools in all – leaving over a million pupils and 34,000 teachers with no place for learning. In Leyte province alone, 760 schools were damaged. The Philippine Government, with the support of UNICEF and other partners, has worked to get children back to a normal schedule as quickly as possible, first with a ‘soft’ opening of schools in December, to be followed by a full reopening in January.

Read more here: UNICEF | Back on Track

School textbooks rewritten after regime changes

  • Cairo: It is a small photograph of a young man on a page in an Egyptian primary-school textbook. But to many watching closely, it is a big step for education in the Arab world.
  • Khalid Saeed was the 28-year-old Egyptian computer programmer dragged out of an Internet café and beaten to death by Alexandria police after he posted a video of two of them allegedly divvying up drug money after a bust.
  • The Facebook page commemorating his life and expressing outrage over his 2010 death eventually mushroomed into the movement that overthrew president Hosni Mubarak.
  • Khalid Saeed’s story will be taught to all second-graders (seven and eight-year-olds) in Egypt, marking a modest attempt at curriculum reform in an otherwise stodgy educational system.

PAKISTAN: Study reflects school textbooks need to be free of religious discrimination

The study found that 22 school textbooks contain discriminatory material towards minorities and other countries, as well as making insulting remarks against minority religions and including distorted historical facts.

[SOUTH KOREA] … But South Korea, among the world’s most wired nations, has also seen its plan to digitize elementary, middle and high school classrooms by 2015 collide with a trend it didn’t anticipate: Education leaders here worry that digital devices are too pervasive and that this young generation of tablet-carrying, smartphone-obsessed students might benefit from less exposure to gadgets, not more.
Those concerns have caused South Korea to pin back the ambition of the project, which is in a trial stage at about 50 schools. Now, the full rollout won’t be a revolution: Classes will use digital textbooks alongside paper textbooks, not instead of them. First- and second-graders, government officials say, probably won’t use the gadgets at all. (via In South Korean classrooms, digital textbook revolution meets some resistance - The Washington Post)

[SOUTH KOREA] … But South Korea, among the world’s most wired nations, has also seen its plan to digitize elementary, middle and high school classrooms by 2015 collide with a trend it didn’t anticipate: Education leaders here worry that digital devices are too pervasive and that this young generation of tablet-carrying, smartphone-obsessed students might benefit from less exposure to gadgets, not more.

Those concerns have caused South Korea to pin back the ambition of the project, which is in a trial stage at about 50 schools. Now, the full rollout won’t be a revolution: Classes will use digital textbooks alongside paper textbooks, not instead of them. First- and second-graders, government officials say, probably won’t use the gadgets at all. (via In South Korean classrooms, digital textbook revolution meets some resistance - The Washington Post)

KABUL — In a country where the recent past has unfolded like a war epic, officials think they have found a way to teach Afghan history without widening the fractures between long-quarreling ethnic and political groups: leave out the past four decades.
A series of government-issued textbooks funded by the United States and several foreign aid organizations do just that, pausing history in 1973. There is no mention of the Soviet war, the mujaheddin, the Taliban or the U.S. military presence. In their efforts to promote a single national identity, Afghan leaders have deemed their own history too controversial. (via In Afghanistan, a new approach to teaching history: Leave out the wars - The Washington Post)

KABUL — In a country where the recent past has unfolded like a war epic, officials think they have found a way to teach Afghan history without widening the fractures between long-quarreling ethnic and political groups: leave out the past four decades.

A series of government-issued textbooks funded by the United States and several foreign aid organizations do just that, pausing history in 1973. There is no mention of the Soviet war, the mujaheddin, the Taliban or the U.S. military presence. In their efforts to promote a single national identity, Afghan leaders have deemed their own history too controversial. (via In Afghanistan, a new approach to teaching history: Leave out the wars - The Washington Post)

Indian culture reflected poorly in school syllabi, finds survey - Hindustan Times

The survey found that texts such as Ramayana, Mahabharata and tales from Panchatantra, Jataka and Hitopadesha were omitted from textbooks but Aesop’s Fables had been included.

"It is shocking that the south and north-eastern parts of India are almost neglected in the textbooks which are overwhelmingly tilted toward central and north India," said the survey report, which rated books on different parameters such as tradition and culture, history, heritage, Indian thought and spirituality.

[LIBYA] At least 1.2 million Libyan pupils are set to return to school tomorrow, almost a year after they evacuated their classrooms during the country’s popular uprising against the regime of Muammar al-Qadhafi, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported today.
The agency said about 27 million textbooks are being printed by Libya’s education ministry and 10 million have already been distributed in anticipation of the return to school.
But a shortage of both books and desks remain, and transport to and from school is also lacking for many children. (via More than a million children set to return to school in Libya – UNICEF)

[LIBYA] At least 1.2 million Libyan pupils are set to return to school tomorrow, almost a year after they evacuated their classrooms during the country’s popular uprising against the regime of Muammar al-Qadhafi, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported today.

The agency said about 27 million textbooks are being printed by Libya’s education ministry and 10 million have already been distributed in anticipation of the return to school.

But a shortage of both books and desks remain, and transport to and from school is also lacking for many children. (via More than a million children set to return to school in Libya – UNICEF)

[ZIMBABWE] After completing the fourth grade at the top of her class, 13-year-old Ellen Mbedzi was forced to drop out of Mafeha Primary School in Bulilima, a district in south-western Zimbabwe. Her unemployed father did not see the value of spending the family’s limited resources on a girl. (via In Zimbabwe, school grants provide equal learning opportunities to girls | Back on Track)

[ZIMBABWE] After completing the fourth grade at the top of her class, 13-year-old Ellen Mbedzi was forced to drop out of Mafeha Primary School in Bulilima, a district in south-western Zimbabwe. Her unemployed father did not see the value of spending the family’s limited resources on a girl. (via In Zimbabwe, school grants provide equal learning opportunities to girls | Back on Track)

[RAMALLAH, West Bank] Do Palestinian school textbooks “teach terrorism,” as Newt Gingrich claimed in a recent debate among U.S. Republican presidential hopefuls?

His example — that Palestinians “have text books that say, ‘If there are 13 Jews and nine Jews are killed, how many Jews are left?’” — is not in any of the texts, researchers say.

As for Gingrich’s broader claim, the textbooks don’t directly encourage anti-Israeli violence, but they also don’t really teach peace, studies say.

NPR