Norway-led apps aid children fleeing war / News / The Foreigner

Norway-led apps aid children fleeing war. The Norwegian government and others are behind two game-based learning apps for children and young people without access to education. Talking of the apps, Prime Minister Erna Solberg stressed the importance of applying “modern technology in new ways to ensure the right to education for all children.” They were developed as part of a joint cooperation between Norway and tech giants across the globe. The initiative is mainly focused on children from Syria.

syria, refugees, apps, technology, games, war, education, paywall



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Norway-led apps aid children fleeing war

Published on Thursday, 23rd March, 2017 at 14:47 under the news category, by Sarah Bostock.

The Norwegian government and others are behind two game-based learning apps for children and young people without access to education.

EduApp4Syria screenshots
EduApp4Syria screenshots
Photo: NORAD/Flickr


Talking of the apps, Prime Minister Erna Solberg stressed the importance of applying “modern technology in new ways to ensure the right to education for all children.”

They were developed as part of a joint cooperation between Norway and tech giants across the globe. The initiative is mainly focused on children from Syria.

“As most Syrian families have smartphones, these games have the potential to reach millions of children whose native language is Arabic. In the long term, similar games may be used to help children in other parts of the world who are not able to go to school” said PM Solberg.

According to the government-issued statement, an estimated 2.5 million Syrian children are unable to attend school as a result of the armed conflict. Some children remain in war-torn Syria, while others have fled the country.  

Last week saw the Norwegian Prime Minister invite some Syrian children who had fled from Aleppo to try out these games at her official residence in Oslo.

HRH Crown Princess Mette-Marit and Foreign Minister Børge Brende also attended the event.

These apps, which took user-friendliness and engagement potential issues into consideration during design, were released by Laila Bokhari, State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, at this week’s Mobile Learning Week in Paris.

They had been tested by 40 Syrian refugee children between the ages of 5-10 living in Norway, Syrian children in Jordan and Lebanon, as well as other countries hosting Syrian refugees.

The apps are (summaries supplied by the companies):

  • Antura and the letters. Here, players must help an old keeper watch over the living letters (which are wild little creatures. The old keeper’s dog, Antura, joins the player alongside them player through mini games. This corresponds to content from the Syrian elementary school curriculum.
    Project collaboration by
    : Cologne Game Lab (German university), Wixel Studio (Lebanese development studio), and Video Games Without Borders (International non-profit organization).
  • Feed the Monsterpps. A puzzle game that helps teach Arabic, kids need to solve letter and word puzzles to help evolve friendly monsters who were sent to exile by the evil ‘Harboot’.
    Collaboration project by:
    Apps Factory (Romania), the Centre for Educational Technology and humanitarian organisation, International Rescue Committee (IRL)

The games were developed through an international competition led by Norad (Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation) and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in partnership with All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development, mobile operator Orange, and the Inter-Agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE).

Feed the Monster and Antura are available to download for free from Google Play and the App store and can be used without internet access once dowloaded.

Called the EduApp4Syria project, they form part of the Norwegian government’s global education efforts.



Published on Thursday, 23rd March, 2017 at 14:47 under the news category, by Sarah Bostock.

This post has the following tags: syria, refugees, apps, technology, games, war, education, paywall.





  
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