Wednesday 20 May 2009

Above are students of Ukombozi Primary School doing some staff with their laptops. The students were doing their self activities where others were playing games, others were writing, others were charting and others were searching materials from the internet with their laptops.
Mr. Innocent was passing to see how students were doing their activities. We discovered that students were able to get some materials from the internet with their XO laptops. Of-course the problem they faced was language because they use swahili as the learning language and they used it when they search materials. Lackly enough they are able to get swahili materials. For internet, students can only access internet when they are at school because most of them leave at distace which is out of internet connection.

Above are teachers of Ukombozi Primary School inspecting and assisting students on their activities they do with XOs. Students usualy have one hour every day from Monday to Friday where they sit in the same class with their teachers to discuss and ask different questions concerning how to use XO programs and some difficulitie which students face when they use Xos at their ample time. This one hour is out of the normal class hours which students and teachers can use XOs in their respective classes. In this session students and teachers learn together because they rise different new ideas which even teachers could not know.

Access point configuration
Mr. Timothy Joseph and Melichzedek Kilumile cofiguring Access point at Ukombozi Primary School.

Access Point configuration.

Above are images showing internet connection at Ukombozi Primary School. In the pictures, there is AP, Modem and Server.

Above are students playing with their XOs after training. We experinced good progress from students as they are able to use more XO programs than how they are trained in the class. Students are very happy and they always request our training to continue. We are always having teachers in the class during training so that they can learn more and they can help students during training.

Above are students listerning to their teachers during the lesson.

Above are students doing different activities with the XOs.

Above are students playing with their XO in the class. behind are teachers who were ready to help students. Among teachers is Mr. Kilumile (The first from left). Mr. Kilumile is the Tumaini OLPC team member.

This was the other day of training where Mr. Innocent was teaching students more XO activities. We experienced the increase of the number of students in the class as we proceed with training. Those who were not coming to the school regularly, started to come when we started trainings.

Above are students performing different activities with XO as they were directed by teachers during trainings. The activities performance includes students creativity.
Above are Ukombzi Primary School teachers, inspecting and helping students learning progress.
Above are Ukombzi Primary School teachers (standing at the back), inspecting students learning progress. Teachers are able to help students as they were trained during the first training session which was for teachers only.

Above is Tumaini OLPC Team member (Mr. Innocent) teaching students how to use different XO programs. During the first training day, students were very happy and they were able to operate some few XO programs.

Mr. Timothy Joseph, walking around the training room to see the progress of teachers during training session. Teachers were trying to do some staffs with the XOs as they were instructed by the trainers.

Above are two desktop computer which the Ukombozi primary School has been given last week by Iringa municpal member of parliament (MP) Ms. Monika Mbega as the initial support to OLPC project. She said that, these computers shold be used by teachers as the support to XOs project like downloading XO's softwares. She also expressed her happiness with OLPC project at Ukombozi School. She promissed to report the matter to the government with her capacity of parents representative to the government. We talked with her via the mobile phone and she promissed to visit us soon.

Mr. Timothy Joseph, assisting teachers to understand some concepts in the XOs programs during teachers training session. Teachers were asking questions which they fail to understand like drawing table inside table.

This is the Access Point (AP) we bought for the internet connection at the school.

We has been visited for the second time by our partner NGO leader (Global Outreach President) Mr. Stan Muessle during teachers training session. Mr. Stan was in Iringa from America for about a month. Mr. Stan were very happy with training progress as teachers were able to write, draw and perform some other staffs with the XOs. He insisted on the security and the one - to - one XO ownership among children.

Tumaini University OLPC Team member Mr. Timothy Joseph (Standing) inspecting how teachers are doing some staffs during the training session.

Ukombozi Primary School teachers doing some staffs as they were directed by trainers (Tumaini University OLPC Team members) during training session.

Ukombozi Primary School teachers doing some staffs as they were directed by trainers (Tumaini University OLPC Team members) during training session.

Ukombozi Primary School teachers listening to trainer (Tumaini University OLPC Team members) during training session.

Above is the black board which is used by the trainers for more demonstrations for teachers during training sessions at Ukombozi Primary School.

This was our sixth day of teachers training at Ukombozi Primary school. Teachers are very happy with the trainings and they are always getting in the training room in time.

Above are Ukombozi primary school teachers during the training session. The training was about writing activity which seem to be complex to teachers but they need to much on that activity. This will take about 4 days of training.

Innocent Obumba (Tumaini University OLPC team member) explaining some concepts of XO programs to Ukombozi Primary school teachers during training session.

Ukombozi Primary School teachers listerning to Timothy Joseph, during training session.

Ukombozi Primary School teachers doing some staffs as they asked by trainers (Timothy and Innocent) during training session.

Main switch at Ukombozi power infrastructure

At the first day of visiting, Mr. Stan was inspecting or he was trying to the progress of teachers from the trainings which was on the third day. Mr. was very happy to teachers were able to do some staffs with XOs like writing, changing text into different formats, aligning text and using other programs like speech activity and chart activity. Teachers were very happy for the visit. Taechers were able to show that to the visitor become they like trainings and they tike their eple time exploring the XOs. But the very important they do is that they are very commited to the program.

From left are, Melichzedek Kilumile, Innocent obumba (Tumaini University OLPC team members), Mr. Stan Muessle (The president of out NGO partner) and the headteacher of Ukombozi Primary School. Stan visited us for the first time in the training room.

From right is Mr. Stan Musslse (Global Outreach president), Mr. Timothy Joseph, Mr. Melichzedek Kilumle (Tumaini University OLPC team members) and The head teacher of our deployment school (Ukombozi Primary School). Stan visited us at Ukombozi primary school during training session to see how we proceed. Mr. Stan greated techers and adviced them to learn more from XOs at their eple time. he also requested some photos from the trainining program so that he can put them in his NGO website. Lastly, Mr. Stam insisted that teachers and community around the school should all work together to ensure the success of project as well as security of the XOs.

From left, President of Rwanda (Hon. Paul Kagame) and OLPC chairman (Prof. Nicholas Negroponte) on the day of official launch of OLPC learning centre in Kigali Rwanda.

Kigali Institute of Technology (KIST) has become a new OLPC learning centre

OLPC learning centreIn Kigali (from left, Innocent Obumba, Prof. Nicholas Negroponte and Timothy Joseph) after the official launch of OLPC learning centre in Rwanda. Innocent and Timothy are the Tumaini University OLPC team members.

From left, Member of perliament from Kenya, President of Republic of Rwanda (Hon. Paul Kagame) and OLPC Country representative from Uruguay in Kigali Rwanda.

OLPC team members from different countries and Rwandan government officials at Prime holdings garden during short break on the day of OLPC leraning centre launching in Kigali Rwanda.

President Paul Kagame addressing the OLPCorps members at prime holdings hall during official launching of OLPC learning centre.

OLPC Chairman (prof. Nicholas Negroponte) addressing OLPCorps members at prime holdings hall during the official lauch of OLPC learning centre.

OLPCorps members in the prime holdings hall

Hon. Paul Kagame, Prof. Nicholas Negroponte, Rwanda minister for the ministry of science and Technology and other OLPCorps members in the prime holdings.

Outside prime holdings hall.

OLPCorps teams at KIST during workshop sessions.

Kigali Workshop.

We did not updated our blog for a long time since we came back from Kigali. The reason was that, we had examinations and a lot of tests when we came back to our University and our school of deployment was closed. The school will open on Monday 13/07/2009. But we were working on power issue where till this Thursday 09/07/2009, the power issue is completed. We have been also buying the requirements like Acess Point and Modem for internet as well as concluding deal with Tanzanian Telecommunication Company Limited (TTCL) to supply internet at Ukombozi Primary School (Our deployment school). We also refreshed laptop ready for deployment training from 13/07/2009.
We have been also writing a report on our project and all about our plan with this project in Tanzania. We have been asked to submit this report to Tanzania Ministry of Education including the report about Rwanda training. We have been working on these reports which we wish we will submit to the Ministry by 20/07/2009.

Our plan from 13/07/2009
We will start training teachers on 15/07/2009 and we will conduct the parents semminar on 21/07/2009. We haven't done this because we have to communicate with parents through their kids. We are planning to distribute laptops on 26/07/2009. We will continue training teachers and kids after we distributed the laptops.


There is a delay with our shipment. In Tanzania TRA (Tanzania Revenue Authority) tax exempts educational computers (0% tax).But our shipment arrived in two parts, with one week difference. One shipment of computers. One shipment of Chargers.DHL does not want to release the chargers without us paying over 400$ in tax, because chargers are not computers. They say that they look like mobile phone chargers. Our university’s procurement officer has to drive tomorrow(12.06.2009) 500Km to Dar es Salaam and back to prove our point and we still don’t know if we get the charger shipment tax exempt.DHL told him that he needs to get one letter from Regional Commissioner and one letter from TRA,and take those to DHL in Dar es Salaam so that they can get a clearance. That process may take more than a month.

The above is one of the News paper published in Kiswahili(National languge of Tanzania) and is widely known as Mtanzania Newspaper.This Newspaper is published all over the Tanzania(Rular and urban areas). The news of OLPC appears in page 3, the heading of the News was 'The Students of Tumaini are the among the winners of the Technology comptetion in the world'.

This is just one of the news paper which published our project in all East African countries. Our project has announced by several other media such Tanzania national Television (TBC i.e. Tanzania Broadcast Cooperation) and other private televisions such ITV.


We conducted the first meeting with education Stakeholders at Ukombozi Primary School (Our deployment site).The meeting comprises of Community leaders around Ukombozi Primary School,Ukombozi School committee, Municipal education officer, Iringa Municipal Development Executive Director(DED),The Assistant Mayor of Iringa Municipal, Head of BSC in Information Technology program of Tumaini University, Depute Provost for Academic Affairs of Tumaini University, Representative of Member of Parliament of Iringa Municipal and All Ukombozi Teachers.

The purpose of the meeting was introduce the community about OLPC foundation and the objective of OLPC project in Education development in Africa especially by making the students aged between 6-12 yrs to learn individually by using laptops. It was also aiming to find out the needs and the expectation of the community after getting XO Laptops

Ukombozi Primary School buildings

From left; Mr. Innocent (Tumaini OLPCorps team member) & Mr. Ali (Global Outreach representative) after the meeting (Global Outreach is the team partiner).

The Head teacher below, started by showing OLPC project in his school as the golden chance for improvement of kids learning ability. He also asked every member of the meeting to participate in his/her capacity to make sure that the project is beneficiaries to kid’s education and the community at lager

Ukombozi Primary school head teacher (right), welcoming all guests from Tumaini University and regional leaders to the meeting.

Mr. Innocent (Tumaini University OLPC team member) introducing the guests from Tumaini University to Ukombozi local leaders and regional leaders before the meeting started.

Mr. Melichzedek (Tumaini University OLPC team member) breafing meeting members about OLPCorps project at Ukombozi Primary School.

From left; Ward representative to district council, Ukombozi Village chairman, Prof. Seith Nyagava (Tumaini Univesity Depute Provost for Academic), Prof. Matti (Head of IT program at Tumaini Univesity) at the meetig (Ukombozi P. School)

Ukombozi Primary School teachers at the meeting (At Ukombozi Primary school)

From left; Mr. Innocent, Mr. Melichzedek & Mr. Timothy (Tumaini OLPC team members) in the meeting at Ukombozi Primary School

The Depute Provost for Academic Affairs of Tumaini University below, said he would like Ukombozi to be good example of all primary schools in Tanzania and all over the world in transforming education from Teacher centered to learner centered. He promised to support the work done by Tumaini University OLPCorps Africa Team.

Prof. Seith Nyagava ( Tumaini University Depute Provost for Academic Affairs ) addressing the meeting at Ukombozi Primary School.

The Head of IT program at Tumaini University (Prof. Matti Tedre) below, expressed the OLPC Vision and five principals which must be observed when kids have their laptops. He said the laptops must be for kids and not for school or any other member of the community and those five principals are not optional. Also he said, Tumaini IT program will conduct a research OLPC project at Ukombozi Primary school and give out the solutions on how it can be made the best. He said also he would like the project to be process and not a project which may cut off after a short time.

Prof. Matti Tedre (Head of IT program at Tumaini University) addressing the meeting at Ukombozi Primary School.

Iringa Municipal education officer below, said she is very happy with the project and that she is going to sit with Iringa Municipal Development Executive Director (DED) to discuss how they will support the project from now as well as in the long run.

Iringa Munispal Educational officer, addressing the meeting at Ukombozi Primary School h.

Iringa Munispal Executive Director, addressing the meeting at Ukombozi

The Assistant Mayor of Iringa Municipal below, promised that he will cooperate with Government sectors to make sure that this project be progressive. He said that he will present this project in the next Municipal council budget meeting so that they will able to support the project especially by building a special room for kids learning charging laptops. Primary School h.

Iringa Munispal Assistance Mayor addressing the meeting at Ukombozi Primary School.

About our Group

We are students of Tumaini University in Tanzania. We formed a group of three people when OLPC call upon all universities in the world to write a proposal for helping kids aged between 6 -12 years to improve their learning by the use of XO-1 laptops. Our group is known as MOT TECHNOLOGY GROUP. We formed this group to comprise our initial names where M stands for Melichzedek Kilumile, O stands for Obumba Innocent and T stands for Timothy Joseph.

Our Background

Here is the brief background of each of us before we came at tumaini university and our recent life at tumaini university – iringa.

Mr. Timothy, Joseph a student at Tumaini University ,Iringa University college, taking Bsc. Information Technology, I’m professionally a teacher teaching at Mtwara teachers college, my academic history is: Diploma in education, with Mathematics and physics subjects at Dar -es -salaam teachers college as well as advanced and ordinary levels at Usagara high school and Ifakara secondary school respectively. All these institutions are in Tanzania

Melichzedek George Kilumile was working in Electrical and Electronics Engineering for 14 years in Tanzania Electric supply company (TANESCO).And i have a lot Experience in these field. Now i studying BSC-IT. At Tumaini university. I prefers Very much in ICT field and Electrical & Electronics. When i complete At Tumaini University i expect to be very productive to my employer and Tanzania Government at all.

Mr. Obumba Innocent is a B.Sc in Information Technology student at Tumaini University Tanzania. I am a male by gender and my current age is 25 years. My nationality is Tanzanian. My academic background starts from primary school seven years, Secondary school six years and currently 2nd year University student. My favorite ICT topics are ICT for community
development, databases and networking. Previously I taught in Sengerema Secondary School in Tanzania.

Know About OLPC

The One Laptop Per Child Association, Inc. (OLPC) is a U.S. non-profit organization. Their task is to oversee the creation of an affordable educational device for use in the developing world. The mission of OLPC Association is to create educational opportunities for the world's poorest children by providing each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop with content and software designed for collaborative, joyful, self-empowered learning. Currently the association is focused on the development, construction and deployment of the XO-1 children’s laptop.

The organization is led by M.I.T. professor Nicholas Negroponte (chairman), and Charles Kane (President and Chief Operating Officer). The funders of OLPC include AMD, Brightstar Corporation, eBay, Google, Marvell, News Corporation, SES, Nortel Networks, and Red Hat. The OLPC project is an educational project, not a computer project—computer technology is just a tool for good education.

OLPC Facilities
OLPC provides kids with the very attractive kids designed laptops which are easy to carry, easy to learn and are very portable for kids movements from school to home and vise versa. OLPC also provides server for kids laptops network connection.

An OLPC XO laptop

OLPC server for XO network

An example of wireless access point

OLPC funding

OLPC does not fund everything to kids learning projects, they give facilities such laptops and server and not more than $10,000 for the implementation. Teams working with kids on the project sites have to find some other funds from partner such NGOs, Government organizations and the community around to enable them implementing the project and to keep the project sustainable.

How did we know One Laptop per Child Movement.

We were finding how we can contextualize ICT knowledge to the community as the ICT policy of our University is set. But we did not know how we can make it practically. The head of ICT program at Tumaini University, Prof. Matti Tedre informed us about OLPC and advised us that One Laptop Per Child would give us a great chance to contextualize ICT to the community. Hence he gave us the web addresses of OLPC and asked us to search more information about OLPC movement and how can we get working with OLPC. He also directs us to read the book written by the OLPC founder Prof. … Nicholas Negroponte which is found in our University Library.

How did we get working with One Laptop per Child movement

We took a little time reading the book written by OLPC founder Prof Nicholas Negroponte and we discovered that his vision and mission would be a great chance to integrate and contextualize ICT in the community development activities. We also took time visiting OLPC website till we got the announcement inviting all universities to write a proposal so that they can get chance to work with OLPC foundation. For us this was the right time to get chance of contextualizing ICT to the community. Prof. Matti Tedre also advised us that if we can write a proposal and get chance of working with OLPC movement program, it would be a wonderful chance to contextualize ICT to the community.

We decided to write a proposal to ask for the opportunity to work with OLPC foundation 2009 movement. We also asked our university (Tumaini University) and one of U.S.A NGO (Global Outreach) dealing with imparting ICT to the community by providing computers to Secondary Schools in Iringa region and at the same time teaching ICT to those schools to be our partners. We also selected Ukombozi Primary School to be the implementation site if we get opportunity for working with OLPC movement 2009. We were happy that Tumaini University, Global Outreach and Ukombozi Primary school agreed to work with us if we get the opportunity. At last we were so happy to receive the OLPC invitation to participate after accepting our proposal.

Our preparations

After we received OLPC invitation, we started attending on line seminars arranged and conducted by OLPC foundation through IRC channel and we respond to every query from the OPLC to make sure that everything goes smooth. We also conduct regular team meetings to discuss different issues concerning the project implementation. We visit our deployment site regularly to discuss with the head teacher and other staff members the implementation and project running activities. We also try to get more familiar with the kids who will work with by playing with them on the play ground and trying to talk with them so that they do not wonder when we start the actual implementation on the part of teaching them how to learn and keep XO laptops safe. We also discuss with our university administration on how to manage the project administratively, technically and financial control techniques. Not only that but also, we visit different government offices especially education offices to inform them about the project and discuss with them to support it.

We are also preparing ourselves to attend the workshop arranged by the OLPC from 7th June, 2009 to 18th June, 2009 in Kigali Rwanda. While preparing all these to be done, the university gave chance to attend a 3 days workshop on project management from 19th June, 2009 – 21st June, 2009 conducted by Dr Karen Rainford from Saint Marry’s University of Minnesota in USA.

About our project.
Since we were aiming to contextualize ICT to the community, we plan that through this OLPC 2009 movement, we will be able to impart ICT use to the young generations aged 6 – 12 years through their learning so that they become active learners. Kids will be able to integrate ICT in their learning process by the use of computers where they will be able to write, read, draw and calculate by using computers. Children will get chance to communicate with others all over the world to share experiences and ideas. They also get materials via internet and be able to get other more information from their pears via the internet.

Hence our main goal is to have the children who can learn themselves without depending on teaching. We believe that in the future, a big part of education system will be conducted through ICT where children or students stays at home and learn by communicating with their teachers through ICT media like computers. Hence this OLPC movement will lead us to prepare children to cope with such kind of education system.

We also plan to minimize digital divide since we believe that OLPCorps 2009 movement gives us chance to reduce numbers of factors leading to digital divide. The knowledge impact to kids and the computer they have will reduce digital divide gap at least a little bit.

What students will benefit from our project

We believe that kids will get the following achievements;
Students of the same chronological age learning the same objectives in any place in the world will be in the same position to do the following;

Students in any place in the world require the same amount of time, as in an academic year, to master predetermined content.Also we expect that within the same grade level, students are expected to master pre-designed goals for all curricular areas at the same rate.

Through XO laptops child education will consists of providing opportunities for children to engage in creative activities that fuel the constructive process. Hence learning will not come from finding better ways for the teacher to instruct, but from giving the learner better opportunities to construct.

We also expect that go beyond the current good construction materials for learning and give students more constructive skills. Most current used art materials like Paper, cardboard, clay, wood, metal and plastic make good construction materials but XO is the more advanced material for the students constructive work.

We believe that if students actively engaged in creating things with the XO laptops, they realize the difference between using art works and the XO technology. Also students construct knowledge in their heads as they engage in construction activities with the XO laptops.
Students improves in Mathematics and English subjects which the very crucial subjects emphasized by the Tanzanian Government education policy.

Hence through this OLPC 2009 movements, Ukombozi Primary School and the community around them become the best environment to challenge traditional learning system which does not fit in the recent real world education system to impact the community development globally. It also enables learners of different ages to share the same physical space.

Our Deployment site
Ukombozi Primary School.

Ukombozi primary school is the government school started in 2004. the school is located in Iringa region in southern Tanzania. The aim of starting Ukombozi primary school was to save a number of kids or children who were about to miss education due to increased number of children beyond the capability of the primary schools around the community living at Mkimbizi street in Iringa region. The school was given the name Ukombozi which means “saving”

The school is located in a small community of mkimbizi street in iringa, basically the school is in the rural community of approximately 400 residents. it is located around 8 kilometers away from the iringa town, the school is also located near one the small mountain among several mountains around iringa region. many Mkimbizi residents (about 80%) are farmers and the remaining are workers in business people. hence the main activity of Mkimbizi residents is farming. some houses in Mkimbizi street use electric power and some do not have.

Students at Ukombozi are admitted at the ages of 6 – 7 years at the beginning of each academic year.

Children at Ukombozi Primary School

History of children

Most of these rural children are from poor families. They never use computers. Their school has no even a single computer. They will use computers for interactive learning. Children will be creative, innovative and cooperative. Children expose their families to computer literacy and hence their families will be aware of ICT and it’s important to the development of the country.

Our Partners

Tumaini University

Tumaini University administration block

Tumaini University – Iringa University College an institution of higher learning organized under the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania. The college is dedicated to develop dynamic and entrepreneurial leaders who will engage and realize their full potential and that of their community, their country and the world at large. Iringa University College was established in 1994. It is providing a combination of liberal arts, education, specific technical training and practical experience.

Iringa University College offers first and higher degrees, diplomas and certificates. Being aware that most students join universities with limited communication and information technology skills, Tumaini University take extra measures to hone up such skills in order to enhance the student’s ability to cope with the academic work and to enhance their future competitiveness in the job market.

Tumaini University seminar rooms

Keen to develop an international orientation as well, the university maintains cooperative links with a number of institutions outside the country. Currently they include the universities of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA), the University of Joensuu in Finland, the Maastricht School of Management and the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands.

Global Outreach

Global Outreach office

Global Outreach is the US NGO which establishes a local office in Iringa region- Tanzania to Tanzanian schools with computer literacy education. The vision of Global outreach is to introduce computer literacy into the curriculum of secondary schools in central Tanzania, and to then use that capability and knowledge to improve the quality of education in all subjects. The focus of Global Outreach is on improving educational opportunities in remote locations which accommodate the poorest of the country's student population, often in villages that lack many 21st century basics. They establish partnership with national initiatives to ensure ongoing value of skills imparted by them. They furnish computer laboratories with electrical capacity and they supply to school hardware and software and special education equipments.

Lugalo Secondary School under Global Outreach program

Global Outreach has spent 10+ years in the Iringa region working with secondary schools, they have already demonstrated the impact of shared learning with students around the
world through Internet connection by the weekly video conferences between our secondary schools in Iringa and other schools in the world especially their partner school in United States. Through this program, secondary school students are learning to use the Internet to access a knowledge base unavailable to most children.

Global Outreach internet Libray at Kichangani studying center

Future Plan

We are planning to present this project to the Ministry of Education to support it as part of its implementation of ICT in Education in primary and Secondary School which is now a hot cake. This gives us chance to work freely in the hosting school for long time. We are also planning to present the achievements to the Ministry of Education, OLPC foundation and all other stakeholders including our university and Global Outreach and other interested NGOs within and outside Tanzania. We also plan to expand the project beyond the Ukombozi primary school to other schools in Tanzania with the cooperation of OLPC foundation, the government through the Ministry of Education and other stake holders.