Raspberry Pi Computer Lab

  • Education
  • Youth
  • Technology
  • Nepal
This project is led by Eric Pollard, a Volunteer from Pennsylvania

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The project involves the acquiring and setting up of 8 Raspberry Pi computers at the local primary school with the assistance of OLE Nepal. Project activities will include instructional use on how to use the basic aspects of computers, such as learning how to type on a keyboard, how to use word processing software, etc. Activities will also include playing educational games involving different academic subjects in both Nepali and English language, thanks to the custom software that will be loaded onto the computers courtesy of OLE Nepal.

The primary objective is to help the younger students in the community become better prepared to handle the complexities of work and life in the modern world, which will require them to have adept skills at navigating software and using computers. The community is contributing by setting aside an old classroom to be used as the computer lab at the local primary school, as well as allocating desks and chairs, as well as power inverter/battery backups. The potential impact that the project can have is significant. Many future children growing up in this community will have a head start and great advantage at using computers in an academic context which will be greatly beneficial in applying for jobs and at university.

The lead English teacher and one of my counterparts on this project has expressed to me that the teachers and headmaster very much desire the inclusion of more technology in the local school and classroom. Through proper training, the teachers will become more knowledgeable about the computer technology in the school and will be better equipped to use that to boost the educational outcomes inside the classroom. The school has allocated a large empty room filled with long desks and chairs to serve as the dedicated computer lab, in addition to computer peripherals such as mice and keyboards.

The children will also be able to take these new skill sets taught at school, and teach others in the community. Furthermore, once the lab is up and running, and teachers are properly trained, they can open the school up to the community, to take computer lessons, that way it can be utilized by the entire community, not just teachers and students. In the future, fundraising can be done through the community, in order to purchase more hardware and maintain current hardware and software. The school will be able to sustain the hardware and software of the computers. For hardware, the computers being used are able to withstand climate and daily use. The teacher and students will be shown how to maintain hardware so that it will not be damaged easily.

In case there are bigger repair issues there is a local computer repair shop in the nearby district capital. OLE Nepal will provide service for 5 years regarding updating software and library through detailed training in and directions on how to perform those updates. Their contact information will be provided to the school so they can continue to have a relationship with them. If the computers are damaged and/or need to be fixed, they can be taken to a nearby computer service shop for repair. It will be the responsibility of the school administration (teachers and headmaster) to see that the repairs are successfully carried out. A power inverter with a built in battery will guarantee the continued operation of the computers in the event of the electricity line (from the power grid) being cut out.

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