The ICT4RED course was originally developed for the Cofimvaba Tech4RED initiative and forms part of the Teacher Professional Development (TPD) component of the bigger project. The course is available for use by organisations/schools under the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike licence accredited to the Meraka Institute (CSIR) as well as the contributing stakeholders (Department of Basic Education, Department of Rural Development and Land Reform, Department of Science and technology) and the originating authors (Dr Adele Botha and Maggie Verster).

With large scale tablet implementations happening in schools across the country it has been found that limited adoption and integration is taking place and most teachers are not utilising their tablets other than as “textbooks under glass”. The ICT4RED TPD course is a noticeable exception. The course is different in as far as it does not focus on the technology (e.g. mobile devices and apps), but rather emphasise a learner centered way of teaching and learning with technology embedded into the pedagogical design. It moves the teacher from his/her traditional (teacher centred) comfort zone to a fully learner centred technologically enhanced scenario, in a fun and engaging way.  As the mobile skills are lightly embedded within each learning strategy, the teacher do not even notice the move to a seamless and active use of devices in their classrooms.

The Earn As You Learn (EAYL) system ensures that teachers are challenged to innovate and integrate the chosen strategies in their classrooms as they are taken on a pathway of achievement through badge accreditation. It is preferable that the badge achievements are ultimately rewarded through the acquirement of technology (e.g. earning their tablet or a bonus incentive). All participating teachers have to demonstrate that they have used the chosen strategies in their classrooms (at least once) and that they have embedded mobile devices and app use into their lesson plans.

The entire course is hands-on, gamified and fun.  Teachers are taken through all the steps and tools relating to the various strategies and personally experience how each strategy works. Designing a similar lesson plan and implementing it in their classrooms is therefore exciting as they get feedback and support throughout the course.  Each module has clearly defined objectives, skills and outputs to guide teachers. 

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