The number of children who are in their second year of elementary school and cannot read has increased in recent years. Technology can be an ally of children’s literacy
Children’s literacy is still one of the great challenges of Brazilian education. For every 10 children enrolled in the second year of elementary school, only four know how to read and write. The data is from the Alfabetiza Brasil survey, by the Ministry of Education, and refers to 2021.
The study also showed a frightening reality: the percentage of literate children fell, compared to 2019. That year, more than six children out of 10 could read.
For this stage of teaching, alphabetic students must be able to read small texts, with short periods and locate information on the textual surface. Students are also able to read and articulate verbal and non-verbal text, such as comic strips, for example.
In the writing part, they must write, even with spelling deviations, simple texts. The research was based on the results of the Basic Education Evaluation System (Saeb).
There are several factors behind this sad reality. First, there is a historical weakness in educational training in the country, which includes a lack of teachers, outdated teaching materials and poor management of resources. The situation got even worse due to the pandemic, with remote classes over the internet – which not all students had access to.
Another problem is that many children are out of school. In addition to those who are not even enrolled, there are also students who drop out of classes and do not complete the school year.
To improve children’s literacy in Brazil, investment in education is necessary. But that’s not all: the whole family and community must help, encouraging children to read. If nothing is done, the expectation is that social inequalities will worsen.
The Ramacrisna Institute does its part in favor of children’s literacy, with activities in the Ramacrisna Educational Support Center (CAER) project. The initiative has a Digital Literacy Table, aimed at students aged 6 to 13.
This is an innovative teaching resource in the process of children’s literacy. The technology allows children to become familiar with written language by fitting colored blocks into a large electronic panel. As they are fitted, the letters are recognized by special software and appear on the computer screen.
This way, with interactive activities, they learn to recognize the alphabet. Furthermore, they can construct words, find meanings, discover accents and interpret texts. Mesa helps students with Portuguese and mathematics subjects. The initiative also includes other activities such as fables, proverbs, nursery rhymes and tongue twisters. In this way, the child gets closer to the world of letters, rebuilds their self-esteem and expands the learning process.
The activities with the Board are carried out in the complementary period of the classes of the children in the public school, who must be enrolled to participate in the project. As with the other workshops in the project, such as chess, judo, futsal, badminton, volleyball and educational IT, for example.
Children who participate in the project also receive lunch and snacks daily, including on vacation. The Institute also provides school supplies and clothing, as an incentive for families to keep them attending school.
CAER has already transformed the reality of the region, with a decrease in school dropouts and child labor – practices that were common in the community before. Furthermore, the educational level of children and adolescents increased. In the future, they will have more opportunities to choose a career and enter the job market.
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