Smart Solutions: Makini SMS
Makini SMS is an SMS learning and revision platform for Secondary School students in Tanzania accessible via all types of phones, feature phones and smartphones, it was launched earlier this month by Shule Directs Founder and Executive Director, Faraja Nyalandu. The educational content include Short Lessons and Multiple Choice Quiz Questions covering nine subjects based on the official national syllabus for Form I to Form IV. The subjects include the seven core mandatory subjects of Biology, Mathematics, History, Geography, English, Civics and Kiswahili and two Science subjects of Physics and Chemistry that even though they are not compulsory but they suffer from lack of qualified teachers and qualified resources and minimal students’ interest. On MAKINI SMS, students are able to ask a teacher and get response on different academic and student support matters on SMS through an ‘ask Ticha Kidevu’ feature. To ensure diversity of content, students can also access Wikipedia and the available search capacity can enable them to learn their preferred content instantly.
MAKINI SMS was developed from this backdrop of research. The first lightbulb moment, however, came when we realized that over 85% of Shule Direct open educational resource web users (www.shuledirect.co.tz) accessed it over Opera Mini browsers. As a data oriented enterprise, we interpreted this to mean that most of our users either do not have PCs or prefer learning via mobile. Looking at the opportunities outside, we came to know that 7 out of 10 households in Tanzania own a mobile phone and the penetration rate is growing exponentially. Not only that, but the Government also seemed to have heard our mission of ensuring access to quality education for all by investing 17.5 Billion Tshs in rural telecommunications infrastructure meaning that rural areas will have better connection for better communication. With all these assessments and developments, all that remained to be done for students in Tanzania was an educational platform available on those mobile phones.See the Video Below Of her talking of the App on Millard Ayo..
And MAKINI SMS was born. - Faraja Nyalandu