October 29, 2020
Jorge Aguilar

As in other countries, Honduras closed its schools earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, requiring students to learn at home. Being part of the effort to produce digital learning resources for these students gave me the opportunity to directly impact the education of boys and girls across the country.

As a staff member of the USAID Honduras Reading Activity (HRA; also known as De Lectores a Líderes), I coordinated the multimedia production team in the development of digital learning materials for parents, caregivers, and students. This work was done to support the Honduran Ministry of Education’s nationwide campaign “We Want You Studying at Home” during the pandemic.

As the weeks passed, mothers and fathers sent me photos of their children completing the activities, which was satisfying and gave us proof that we were doing something of great importance during these difficult times. The reach of our materials also surprised me. For example, one of the video presenters, Yohana Aldana, was recognized by a group of children playing in a village not even directly served by the project.

The pedagogical package was developed for grades 1–6. It included over 500 audios and videos, with 125 days of activities designed to promote reading comprehension, writing, grammar, and spelling. The materials were produced by a team of 16 colleagues from regional offices, all working from home. As the production team coordinator, I ensured the flow of content from scriptwriters through the final stage of production and monitored the quality of the 29–30 resources produced every week.

Despite being spread out across the country—Tela, San Pedro Sula, Tegucigalpa, La Paz, and Copán—our production team always managed to work together effectively. The comradery among the team members was special. Every Friday, when the latest batch of lessons was finished, we were delighted to have contributed to the efforts to support children’s at-home learning.

The digital learning materials package was broadcast on local and national TV and radio stations and shared through social media and WhatsApp. It represented an innovative opportunity for EDC through HRA to directly reach over 1.4 million viewers with resources to promote reading at home with the support of the family.

As the 2020 school year winds down, we are determined to finish strong as we disseminate the final batches of digital materials. While some uncertainty remains about the 2021 school year, the Ministry of Education plans to continue using these materials as resources for teachers. And I’m glad that children nationwide will benefit.

To learn more about the distance learning materials, watch this video.

Jorge Aguilar is an HRA master trainer serving in Santa Rosa de Copán, Honduras, and the coordinator of the HRA distance learning materials production team.

COVID-19
Elementary and Secondary Education
Latin America and the Caribbean

3 Replies

Comments


Replying to:
Selvin González
Felicitaciones al excelente trabajo que han desarrollado y por estar siempre con esa disposición de apoyar a la educación de nuestro país. A seguir trabajando y culminar el año con éxito. Saludos.

Replying to:
Jorge Aguilar
Hola, Selvin Muchas gracias por tus palabras. Saludos.

Replying to:
Elías Bustamante
Felicitaciones Jorge, excelente ser humano. Digno ejemplo, saludos

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