Academic journal article Issues in Informing Science & Information Technology

An Interactive E-Learning Tool for Kids in Mauritius

Academic journal article Issues in Informing Science & Information Technology

An Interactive E-Learning Tool for Kids in Mauritius

Article excerpt


Electronic Learning (or e-learning) may be defined as learning using a computer, usually connected to a network. Many researches believe that e-learning is still in its infancy (Kahiigi et al., 2008). Our society can gain tremendously from e-learning. E-learning increases the speed and degree of dissemination of knowledge. It also facilitates the acquisition of knowledge and skills and provides flexible learning opportunities to students. Online learning has a major contribution in the success of distance learning. Nowadays students all over the world are accepting online education, thus compelling educational institutions to provide online facilities (Erlango et al., 2008; Milani, 2008). The existence of a multitude of online e-learning facilities is bringing changes, which we have been struggling to enforce for the last 25 years, in our curricula. It is acknowledged that e-learning can give better support to the less talented students. It can engage pupils who show poor response to classical classroom learning. On the other hand, for the brilliant students, e-learning can provide them with the opportunity to learn faster. In other words, e-learning simply provides a personalised learning experience (Boulton, 2008).

The aim for implementing an interactive online e-learning tool for kids in Mauritius is to promote e-learning in the country. The tool will increase access to resources in various fields. This will promote self-learning among students and at the same time inculcate information and communication technology (ICT) skills on them. We cannot make Mauritius a cyber-is land without developing competent IT skills of the people and this cannot come without a basic knowledge of mathematics and science. The main aims and objectives of the interactive e-learning tool are listed below.

* To provide information on a variety of science topics of importance to the kids.

* To develop a data exchange methodology.

* To make students become independent and allow them to learn at their own pace.

* To enable the students to think and explore a given subject area and increase their knowledge in a more interactive way.

* To promote learning through animation, interactive application and to make learning fun.

* To present learning information to students in appealing and meaningful ways.

The tool will include a forum where different users can interact with each other. The users will be able to search on various topics. There will be a News and Reviews section based on technology, science and culture. Educational games will be provided. A creativity section, for example a painting system, will be included as well.

Education System in Mauritius

Since Mauritius was a British colony before it became independent in 1968, the education system in Mauritius has largely been modeled on the British system. Post independence, education has always been a priority of the government. To be able to meet the challenges awaiting the country, considerable investment of resources, both human and material, has been put into the education sector. As a result, an impressive progress has been achieved in terms of free, universal, compulsory primary education. Free textbooks are provided to all pupils in primary schools. Free secondary education has also been initiated in Mauritius since 1976 and there is a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate courses offered by the tertiary institutions in Mauritius. Since 1988, the University of Mauritius is providing free full time undergraduate courses. As we can note, the Government of Mauritius has made a substantive effort to provide sufficient funding for education. The government has also been subsidizing significantly private confessional schools, which are administered by the Catholic Church.

In general, children are enrolled in primary schools at the age of six. They are admitted in Standard I and from there, they move automatically to higher standards until they reach Standard IV, where they are categorized via a streaming process. …

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