Elimu’s Offline eLearning Innovation
When Elimu opened Elimu Resource Centre in 2016 our focus shifted to using technology to enhance access to educational resources for learners of all kinds, especially children, youth and women. Through a partnership with Learning Equality in the U.S.A., we introduced the Kolibri EdTech Platform to schools.
Kolibri is designed for offline use and does not require data. As such it is completely free to the end-user. In our school-based program content is accessed via a laptop server by any Wifi-enabled devices including the government-issued tablets in public schools. Teacher training began in 2019 in Malindi and formal implementation into schools was initiated in 2020.
With the arrival of COVID-19 to Kenya in March, all schools and institutions of learning, including Elimu Resource Centre, were immediately shut down and students sent home. We immediately set about to innovate a solution for students forced to continue their learning at home. Kolibri is well-suited for home study with content intended for self-paced learning and students able to get automatic feedback from the system. It is easy for parents and caregivers to engage with children through Kolibri and to guide them along in their studies from home.
The innovation we have developed gives access to the Kolibri content to users in the community from a robust computer server hosted at Elimu Resource Centre currently over a distance of more than 2.5 kilometres. This arrangement remains true to the original offline design which does not use the internet and does not require data bundles. It protects children from malicious internet sites and there is no cost to the user.