OLPC Sierra Leone


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"The role of the teacher is to create the conditions for invention rather than provide ready-made knowledge." - Seymour Papert

Image:Sierra Leone XO Flag V2.png Image:XO Flowers.jpg


About OLPC Sierra Leone

OLPC Sierra Leone is an innovative approach to XO deployment which focuses on peer tutoring and a bottom-up distribution model. The pilot project is based in the Pujehun District, where illiteracy rates are around 70%, and fewer than .05% of young women make it to their final year of high school. We are the only program which distributes XOs to every primary and junior secondary school child, and we provide a unique hybrid-model which incorporates learning within the classroom and at home through a peer-tutoring network. With collaboration from staff in the secondary and primary schools, students will receive support and guidance as they use tools available through their XO computers (including calculator, measure, record, write and more) to enhance their learning and education. Furthermore teachers help students read and understand other subject material including the 'Child Rights Act' for Sierra Leone provided by UNICEF.

The use of peer tutors- select students from junior secondary school who excel at academics and have a strong value for community development, to collaborative work with other students outside the classroom environment is a paradigm for collaborative learning using XOs. Our tutors will meet with students a couple of times a week to work with them on a one-on-one basis on in small groups, as needed, to ensure that everyone makes an optimal use of their machines. We are currently setting up a scholarship program for the tutors for their service in time. Likely, most of these tutors might probably have dropped out of school for lack of funds to pay school fees.

During our trip to Sahn Malen in December 2008 and January 2009, we intensively trained 6 peer tutors, 2 staff and 20 students in classes 3 and 5 how to use the XOs. This was the first time the XO was taken to Sierra Leone and the dream is that every child in Sierra Leone should have access to this life changing learning tool.

Images from December '08 Pilot

Video Clips from December '08 Pilot

| Students teach each other in the classroom
| Children receive instruction on XOs
| Peers explore the XOs features
| Peer to Peer learning in the classroom
| Boy shows off his accomplishments on XO
| Collaborative learning on the XOs

Supporting Organizations

Global Minimum

GMin is a student-led non-profit organization which works to solve small, local problems using innovative, global input. We are a team with diverse interests and backgrounds from all over the world, with one common goal: In 2007, GMin led a malaria eradication initiative in the village of Sahn Malen, Sierra Leone. We were one of the first groups to advocate and implement a "full coverage" approach to insecticide-treated mosquito net coverage, providing protection for every individual in the community, not just women and children. Since then, the WHO has also adopted this policy. As part of this project, we worked closely with community members to deploy, install and follow-up with the nets. We also planned a simultaneous awareness campaign, involving workshops and a "Kick Malaria out of Sahn" football game. Follow-up evaluations in 2009 demonstrated that 97% of the population continued to use their nets properly, and the percentage of individuals who believed the purpose of an insecticide-treated mosquito net was for malaria prevention rose by 81%.

GMin's experience and network in the Sahn Malen Chiefdom has made it possible to initiate an OLPC pilot project focused on instruction inside and outside the classroom. The first phase of this project was implemented in December, 2008, and will continue for the next six years.

One Here...One There

Recognizing that the hope of the future is education, Indiana University One Here…One There [IU OLPC] seeks to address global education disparities in sub-Saharan Africa. The premise is simple: One Here...One There aims to provide an easy and affordable mechanism for one student at a college or university in the United States to help fund the education of one primary or secondary school student in sub-Saharan Africa. In August 2008, twelve Indiana University One Here…One There members traveled to South Africa [OLPC ZA] to implement XO learning environments. These members worked alongside African education leaders and students on how to operate the XO laptops over a one month period. Working with student's ages nine to seventeen in three different schools (in Haenertsburg, SA), OHOT members demonstrated the benefits of incorporating these resource-rich laptops into normal classrooms. In addition to OHOT's continual support in South Africa, the team is now expanding its reach to Sierra Leone in hopes of connecting students around the world through the XO.


Harvard University

Indiana University

Learning Stories

Art Work

Peer-2-Peer Model

Insert paragraph about peer-2-peer model implemented in Malen. Profiles of peer tutors. Examples:

[[Image: ]] [[Image: ]] [[Image: ]] [[Image: ]]
Sao Sengeh Elizabeth Lahai Massah Koroma Jinnah Sengeh
12 yrs old, JSS1 13 yrs old, JSS1 15 yrs old, JSS1 11 yrs old, JSS1

Data Collection

Literacy & Enrollment

Image:Literacy Pie Chart Total Sierra Leone.png Image:Sierra Leone Malen Proportion.png Image:Sierra Leone Student Teacher Comparison.png

School Census

Malen Chiefdom - Raw School Data
School Location Teacher Enrol. Class I Class II Class III Class IV Class V Class VI Total
Roman Catholic Sahn 9 145 91 93 88 90 65 572
Roman Catholic Bamba 1 50 32 25 0 0 0 107
Roman Catholic Kpombu 2 59 27 35 14 0 0 135
Roman Catholic Gandorhun 2 60 35 65 55 34 30 279
Roman Catholic Nianyahun 3 94 50 43 32 25 11 255
Roman Catholic Sengema 2 47 45 20 23 15 0 150
Roman Catholic Taninahun 3 70 31 23 17 14 5 160
Roman Catholic Jao 3 86 71 40 26 22 15 260
Roman Catholic Nyadehun 2 65 37 38 11 0 0 151
Roman Catholic Fayama 2 60 40 26 22 16 0 164
Nat. Islamic Miss. Sahn 4 76 25 35 30 20 15 201
Nat. Islamic Miss. Gboyama 5 44 27 13 10 13 11 118
Nat. Islamic Miss. Taninahun 2 15 7 3 2 0 0 27
P.D.E.C. Hinai 4 68 45 48 40 35 11 247
P.D.E.C. Banallen 2 49 43 36 0 0 0 128
New harvest Maley 3 58 47 25 20 15 10 175
SLUIM Sinjo 5 50 46 48 54 0 0 198
SLUIM Jumbu 3 34 42 43 33 9 0 161
Comm. Sch. Kasseh 1 45 45 15 0 0 0 105
M. Jun. Sec. Sch Sahn 12 140 110 60 0 0 0 310
Total 70 1315 896 734 477 308 173 3903

Contact us

Send an email to GMin if you want to find out more or if you are interested in making contributions to the initiative info@gmin.org


Global Minimum
IU One Here...One There


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