Jan 24, 2011

How learning, charity and new technology come together

I run into couple of inspiring services which combines learning and charity type of behavior. They are both taking advantages of Skype. First one is connection native language speakers in Latin America and Africa to people who want to learn French and Spanish and second one is connecting children in India to volunteers who want to help these kids to learn.

The idea behind Glovico is brilliant. Native speakers in countries where hourly wages are smaller than in many western countries can give private language learning lessons. Many in western countries couldn't afford over 40 Eurors (~55 dollars) hourly wages for private language lessons. With this service you can get 5-6 hours with that same amount. Maybe the teaching methods are not the same than in some western countries, but most important thing is that you can talk and chat with native speaking person.

Second service is Solesandsomes. It stands for Self Organizing Learning Environments & Self Organized Mediation Environments. SOLE part is about creating environment where kids can learn anything interesting around the web. SOME part is actually the one I see more inspiring. In that they are connecting volunteers around UK and elsewhere to read stories to children and being mentors for these kids. Original idea was grannies reading fairytales for kids, but it grew to be much more. People are actually helping these kids to learn about life and learning.

There are actually almost countless possibilities for each of us to learn more. There are open universities and lectures you can take for free in the web. For example check Khan Academy for maths learning or Academic Earth for University level education. And I bet there are more.

I think world is really going towards education that is free and available to those who really want to learn.

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

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