Health activity updates from Nepal

OLE Nepal has focused on health activities for some years now. Recently they undertook a project to develop a suite of them with educators from the UN’s World Food Program. In their August newsletter they announced that project’s successful conclusion:

OLE Nepal has completed the development of interactive digital learning activities designed to promote awareness in agriculture, food security and nutrition amongst school children. This set of thirty activities were developed with support from [the WFP] and are correlated with the Grade 5 “Science, Health and Physical Education” subject prescribed by the national curriculum.

OLE Nepal developed the activities in both Nepali and English. [They] have already been integrated in OLE Nepal’s larger E-Paath activity suite, and distributed to all OLPC program schools.

This is great news. Now we just need to upload them to the Sugarlabs Activities Hub and help get them localized into more languages. The E-Paath bundle and wiki pages could use updates as well.

Nepal estimates its overall OLPC costs

Rabi Karmacharya runs OLE Nepal, the local team in charge of implementing the current project in Nepal (with 2100 children and teachers at 26 schools).  Today he posted an estimate of the total cost of their XO project — $77 per child per year. This includes network connectivity, school infrastruture, teacher training, repair, content creation, and administrative overhead for the project.

Rabi notes that many of these (connectivity, training, overhead) are fixed costs that go down with scale, and content creation is largely a one-time cost that they benefits all schools.  And this project is still a pilot — less than 0.1% of the country’s primary school-age children.  Other interesting details: their annual repair cost for the first year was just 2.5% – children and families are extremely careful with their laptops; something we have also observed in other Asian countries.

It’s tremendously useful to see this level of detail in shared data and experiences; thanks to the team for publishing it!  They also publish an amazing country coverage map showing every school taking part in the project, with data about each one.

I hope to also see more of this school-level sharing of data and experiences, from environment and power considerations, to usage rates and general feedback, to published creative work of the students!

Nindoma Sherpa and a yak deliver XOs to Nepal

The WFP has been developing some lovely materials to support their work with OLPC in Nepal. In a recent animation short, Nim Doma Sherpa (the youngest woman to climb Mt. Everest) and an acrobatic yak (who seems to have been working with her for some time) snowboard down a mountain to deliver XOs to a school of children. Priceless.