OLPC Launch Conference at KIST

We’re in Rwanda for 10 days learning more about OLPC and the lap and getting to know the other groups.  There are 30 groups and all of them deploying XO’s to different countries. 6211_105478790885_542980885_2325935_2136870_n The first day of our workshop started at KIST (Kigali Institute of Science Technology) and we had to present our ideas and go over our proposal in front of all the other groups, KIST president and other faculty and VP of OLPC.  Today we met the president of Rwanda and we shook his hand!!  There were all kinds of government officials including Prime Minister of Learning in Rwanda, OLPC coordinators of Haiti and Uruguay and the Prime Minister of Kenya who is trying to convince my team and I to take our lap tops to his area but we have prior commitments to specific schools. 5260_1174247484095_1465309600_30479543_4571702_n He has offered all kinds of support, funds and accommodations for us.  We don’t know what to do this just happened today so we’re discussing our possibilities.  The idea is that the deployment of 100 lap tops will instigate a large deployment i.e. Rwanda is receiving 100,000 lap tops!!  We’ve updated the software on our XO’s and are creating a few projects to put on the lap top. I had no idea what this tiny lap top is capable of…it can hold 100 books without using much of the space. One of our ideas was to come up with a health and biology game to raise HIV and aids awareness.  6211_105478770885_542980885_2325932_7472745_nAll the groups have a ton of different ideas so we are all using each others to give as many tools to the kids as possible.  I know some of you asked about kids’ needs such as food and clothes but they have that.  I walked in one of the worst slums in Africa and yes there is no plumbing, water, and little food but they have schools, clothes and the community will benefit much more from technology.    OLPC’s goal is for every child in the world, even the most remote parts, to own his or her own lap top.  The CEO today said, “We’re not interested in geniuses, we’re interested in kids making it thru 5th, 6th, and 7th grade.” 6211_105482960885_542980885_2325963_7776928_nMany kids in remote parts of the world don’t stay in school mainly because let’s face it… it’s boring and second its irrelevant to their lives.  The lap top can help them learn things that can intrinsically affect their daily life and mobilize them to expand their knowledge in their areas of interest.  After all, we learn best by DOING.  For example, I met some kids that have had their lap tops two months and one created an elaborate map of his community and another showed me a water filter he created with out any guidance.  VP of OLPC, David Cavallo, said today, “Give kids technology and they know what to do with it.”  We are creating leaders of tomorrow for a world where technology is rapidly advancing.




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One response to “OLPC Launch Conference at KIST

  1. I highly enjoyed reading this article, keep up writing such exciting posts!

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