Drastic times call for urgent measures. In 2017, Bellavista S.H.A.R.E., a division of Bellavista School, put its hand up to make a difference sooner than that. It is time to introduce technology, not just textbooks on tablets, to learners in the educational system, and get South Africans literate, in more than one language – now.
Being a school that intervenes for reading difficulty, the insight into effective reading intervention exists within its members and associated colleagues internationally. Bellavista set out in pursuit of a scalable, evidence based technology solution that it could develop and share with South Africans rapidly.
Feed the Monster is a joint venture of Apps Factory, GET – The Center for Educational Technology, and IRC – The International Rescue Committee. This award winning app was funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the software declared open source following its pilot efficacy in Syrian refugee camps.
By deploying accessible cellular technology, a solid, research based and award winning literacy application, Feed the Monster, presented in an instructional and gamification format, can be delivered directly to the learners and get them literate. Readers aged between ages six and eight can access reading instruction via a designed curriculum that can take them to an early Grade Two level on a CAPS measurement, matching letters with sounds, and learning that sounds together make words, then words together make sentences that carry meaning. The app addresses the foundation of all reading. Feed the Monster bridges the gap between literacy skills and fluent reading.
This project will ‘scale up’ literacy impact by localising and distributing this app so that many children can begin their journey of learning to read.