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Rural Bihar Learns English

English Language skill is an important skill for a student who wants to enlarge his/her employment opportunity set. Rural students, particularly the dalit students want to learn English Language. However, they are not able to pick up this skill from the rural schools that they attend. Only those students who go to reputed English Medium Schools pick up English Language rather well.

BDVS once in a meeting of its core staff asked a question: how to promote English Language Skill among the rural children to enhance their opportunity set of both higher education and future employability. This question led us to design an experimental course for rural children to learn English Language. The English Learning Program for rural dalit children that we designed is based on an assumption that a student studying class 5 should be able to attain rather good competency in English if he/she is given 30 – 40 days of intense training in two or three installments in a year for 5 consecutive years till he/she reaches class 10. According to this a student who attends this training will have received about 150 to 200 days of intense training in English in a five year period.

A student who is part of this training program is motivated to teach what he/she learnt to at least 5 other students of his/her village. It is hoped that this program would increase rural knowledge base in English Language and thus it would help to spread English Language Skill in rural villages.

We have completed three installments of such trainings for a group of 30 children. The motivation, interest and hard work of these children strengthen our assumption that they would be able to know the use of English Language well by the time they reach class 10. We analyze every aspect of this training with a hope that we would be able to design a successful English Language Learning Program for rural Bihar.

“Baba Ambedkar Prerana Kendra”

BDVS has launched a unique program called “Baba Ambedkar Prerana Kendra’ among the dalit children. This program is bases itself on a core message of Dr. Ambedkar to dalits: Educate… Agitate…Organize. For Ambedkar, liberation of dalits and poor depends on these interrelated principles. A scientific education is the starting point. According to him, a person who has ‘educated’ himself/herself will encounter an ‘agitated mind’ in the face of gross injustices and oppression. This agitation of the mind will lead him/her to act to change the situation to usher in justice, freedom, and dignity. This action is undertaken not in isolation but in companionship with others leading to organization.

“Baba Ambedkar Prerana Kendra” (BAPK) is an experiment to inculcate these principles in Children. Primarily, it is to motivate children towards education. In the first phase of BAPK’s inspirational intervention, the children are motivated to: (1) attend school regularly; and (2) undertake self study at home at least for 2 hours every day. “Regular school and “Regular self study” is the twin slogan of the first phase of a series of planned activities of BAPK.

Administrative Office: Rukunpura, Bailey Road, Near Singh Petrol Pump, Patna 800 014 Near Singh Petrol Pump, Patna 800 014 Ph: 91-0612-2590522

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