Latest News

March 2017

UK’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson visits Kenya

We were delighted to be invited to a reception on Friday 17th March, with the UK’s Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs, Boris Johnson. The reception took place at the High Commissioner’s residence in Nairobi, where our Kenyan team briefed Mr Johnson on how our technology helps to improve education outcomes for marginalised children in rural Kenyan schools.
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February 2017

And the winner of the inaugural iMlango Junior Debaters Contest is…

We’re delighted to announce that the winners of the inaugural iMlango Junior Debaters Contest is the aptly named team, Champions.
For the third and final round of competition 1, the remaining 10 groups were set the motion: ‘Some people think girls drop out of school more than boys. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.’
Champions, a group from Kibaokiche primary school, agreed with the motion and supported their stance with convincing points; citing household work, a lack of clean water, lack of proper sanitation and parental bias as reasons why girls drop out of schools more than boys.
Their answer achieved an overall mark of 70 per cent, narrowly beating Team Zion in second place, who achieved a score of 65 per cent. In third place were the winners of the previous round, Team Lion, who achieved 60 per cent.
We’d like to thank all of the teams for participating, and salute their hard work which resulted in the many high-level responses that we received for this first competition. Make sure to keep an eye out for next month’s update, as it will include pictures of the top teams receiving their prizes!
Elsewhere in the programme, students can now access new KICD approved, multi-subject content and digital revision guides on the learning platform, which has been provided by our education partner, Longhorn Publishers.
As a token of our appreciation, we presented teachers with new iMlango branded polo shirts to say thank you for their support over the past two years – and we thought it would be appropriate to end this month’s update with a message from one of those teachers, Onesmus Kimeu, deputy head teacher of Utithini primary school in Makueni County, who said:
"iMlango admins, facilitators, participants and schools, I wish to most sincerely thank iMlango internet-enabled teaching and learning. I spent a short time with this powerful, selfless organisation; the only organisation that has practiced equity in its true meaning. ASANTE SANA iMlango.’’
Until next time,
The iMlango team
January 2017

iMlango Junior Debaters Contest: Competition 1, Round 1 & 2 Review

After receiving submissions from 452 teams in round 1, the Arimus Media team - partners of the iMlango Junior Debaters Contest and curators of the popular ‘The Great Debaters Contest’ - marked the submissions and selected the top 100 to progress to round 2.
Teacher and pupil feedback from round 1 was overwhelmingly positive. Teachers cited several benefits for pupils, such as improving their capacity to work in a team, learning how to structure coherent arguments, and encouraging independent research.
Pupils also voiced their enjoyment in taking part in the contest, where they emphasised that the contest helped them to learn how to explore different subjects outside of the curriculum and to develop their English language skills. This, in part, is due to the teams knowing that their argument (submission) had to be well presented if they are to be successful and proceed to the next round.
Team Lions, from Kwaupanga Primary in Kilifi, were one of the groups that successfully qualified for round 2 of the contest, with a score of 70 per cent. One of the group’s members, Baraka, attributed good time management and teamwork to their success. With five members expressing conflicting views on the debate motion, the team recognised the need to work through their differences and arrive at a position that everyone was content with.
Their ICT teacher, Ms Etori, was encouraged by Team Lions’ use of an internet search engine to find out information on the benefits of technology in education, and the pupils themselves soon realised the power of internet-based enquiry in researching certain topics.
Ms Etori believes that by just participating in the contest, pupils are exposed to – and develop - valuable life skills, such as independent, inquisitive research.
For the 2nd round of the competition, teams were set the debate motion: ‘Do you agree/disagree with the following statement? With the help of technology students nowadays can access more information and learn it quickly. Use specific reasons/examples to support your answer.’
We received some excellent submissions from 67 teams for this round, which again was marked by the Arimus Media team, who used their many years of experience in running debating contests to select the top submissions. The standout submission from round 2 was from Team Zion, from Kasidi Primary school in Kilifi, who agreed with the motion, and provided the following reason to support their answer: ‘Technology provides practically all that a student may need in order to expand their scope of learning. It is a dependable resource which cater for students in all spheres of learning. If teachers obtain most of their knowledge from technologically established sources, then a student will surely benefit more.’
There were many excellent submissions, and it was extremely difficult to choose, but only 10 teams were able to be selected to progress to the 3rd and final round of competition 1.
For the 3rd and final round of the competition, the 10 remaining teams were set the debate motion: ‘Some people think girls drop out of school more than boys. Do you agree or disagree? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.’ We’re very excited to see the top 10 teams’ responses over the coming weeks, and will be showcasing some of the best responses and the overall winners in next month’s update.
We also launched round 1 of competition 2 this month, which is open to an unlimited number of groups. The debate motion that has been set for the 1st round of competition 2 is:‘Sickness is the biggest factor which makes pupils absent from school. Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Use specific reasons and details to support your answer.’
We’re expecting a strong set of responses from our students in the 2nd iMlango Junior Debaters Competition, and believe that the continuation of the contest will further encourage our young people to participate in literacy challenges and, ultimately, help them to develop their debating, digital, and other transferrable skills.
Until next time,
The iMlango team