The Reach Trust today released an overview of the Lear2Earn pilot that was targeted at Grade 8-12 learners in South Africa for a trial period in the 1st school term of 2015.
Reach believes that innovative thinking is required to urgently address the state of the South Africa education system, especially as far as it relates to high schools. Access to information and services on its own is not enough, and the Learn2Earn pilot has demonstrated that a strong argument can be made for using incentives to stimulate appropriate learning behaviour and to create a long-term habit.
Most children from affluent backgrounds are fortunate to experience strong emotional and educational support from their parents and community. In addition to this, a child in this environment will typically also receive a financial incentive to perform well at school. For example “if you achieve an A for maths, we will buy you a PS4”. This can be a highly effective motivating factor for teenagers, and allows those from more fortunate backgrounds to leverage the sound educational building blocks they already have in place.
Unfortunately, the reality for many learners in South Africa is that they don’t receive emotional and educational support, or any financial incentives. To tackle this shortcoming, Reach tested a new learning innovation, Learn2Earn, on Mxit in South Africa in 2015.
Learn2Earn is an incentive programme that incrementally rewards Grade 8-12 learners with airtime for completing daily Math exercises linked to the national curriculum. Engagement with the programme was very encouraging, and more than 16 000 learners from 8 000 schools took part in the 3-month pilot. Feedback from learners was also very positive:
- A total of 234 451 questions were completed, and learners spent more than 10 882 hours using the app over 3 months
- 95% said it helped them with their schoolwork
- 79% said that the rewards motivated them to do the exercises
- 78% went back to an exercise to see what they have done wrong
The Reach Trust is currently working to extend this concept and expand the potential of Learn2Earn.