In a partnership with Hydro, the Industry and Energy union and the local authorities in Paragominas, children and teenagers in the city have access to 15 iPad devices to learn more about the many uses of electronic resources.
Out of school program
The project aims to teach children and adolescents to use electronic tools through the strategic use of applications that promote the learning of the Portuguese language, mathematics and other school subjects, thus stimulating an improved school performance. The project is part of a wider offer of Caseca's extra-school activities.
“Caseca is an excellent activity center that works before and after school hours. The participation of children and young people in it is very important to ensure that minors do not abandon regular education ”, comment Sten Roar Martinsen and Billy Fredagsvik, members of the Industri Energi union and two central representatives of employees at Hydro. Sten and Billy were key people to carry out the project in 2013.
In a survey involving 117 children and young people who participate in the center, 91% of them responded that iPads help them learn better and 83% of them responded that iPads make them more willing to participate in the center.
“We were very satisfied and full of energy, seeing the joy of children when they use iPads. In addition, comments on the project are always very positive ”, comment the representatives.
The so-called Caseca iPad project is managed by the non-governmental organization Africa StartUp, which has a similar project in The Gambia. The organization's director, Marit Olderheim, says that the main goal of the project is to inspire minors to learn more with the help of technology, especially for learning English and Mathematics.
«Therefore, we use applications that combine games and play with learning. This method proves to have a very good effect, regardless of where it is introduced ”, says Olderheim.
Caseca's main goal is to avoid child labor and strengthen family relationships. The center, under the direction of local authorities, offers a range of activities for children and teenagers before and after school hours. The activities offered are: dance, music, sports, English and, now, information technology with the Hydro project.
Hydro is the owner and operator of the largest bauxite mine in the world, located in Paragominas, and the metallurgical companies in Norway produce aluminum based on alumina, which is made from the refining of the bauxite extracted in Paragominas.
«The offer, aimed at children and adolescents, has a fundamental role for the entire Paragominas community. It is good to be able to contribute so that they have better chances of learning, at the same time that we present a product that contains a lot of aluminum, exemplifying what is done with bauxite mined in the area where they live ”, added Martinsen and Fredagsvik.