The information below provides a listing of How To ... articles concerning creating Teaching & Learning Materials. Each article provides a synopsis of one or more concerns that you can find more information about in the Resources referenced in the synopsis.
The development of appropriate teaching and learning materials needs to build on earlier preparations done under program start-up. For example, the creation and activation of language advisory groups who will lead in decisions on orthography and language usage will be needed to ensure that materials developed adhere to acceptable orthography standards. Culture and heritage experts from the community may also have been identified as part of program start-up; these experts can provide inputs on relevant stories and traditions that children may be familiar with and can therefore be transcribed into story books, or transformed into Big Pictures for oral language development activities.
Similarly, decisions made regarding mother tongue-based curriculum and instruction will necessarily inform the scope and variety of teaching-learning materials that need to be developed. If grade-level competencies have been defined, these should guide the creation of appropriate stories, alphabet charts, word lists, concept charts or other instructional aids that teachers will need in order to effectively teach those competencies. If the curriculum has been designed along thematic lines, allowing children to reinforce their learning of concepts across subjects, materials that support children's learning of those thematic areas will need to be created.
Below are a few ideas for action that MTBMLE programs can undertake to begin development of teaching-learning materials in the mother tongue.
- Map out the particular learners, curriculum-based content/skills, and interests that need to be addressed by the teaching-learning materials that will be developed.
- Identify existing resources in the community that can be maximized to develop these learning materials. Are there songs, poems or other oral traditions that can be transcribed and transformed into instructional materials? Are there organizations from other parts of the country that may have already begun developing these materials? Are there materials in other languages that are relevant to the context of the language community, and which can be adapted for local use?
- Recruit volunteers from the community that can help to create local language materials, and run material development workshops to begin the process.
- Remember that you will typically need a process of writing, editing, rewriting, testing, evaluating and revising/finalizing materials when developing these for the first time.
- Get a few children with similar characteristics as the learners you are going to reach to provide feedback to the new materials that you have developed, and use this feedback to improve the effectiveness and relevance of your work.
- When using materials in lessons for the first time, take note of how the learners interacted with the materials, what worked well and what did not, and use this to guide future materials development or refinement.
- Get children to make their own mother tongue materials—student-made posters, books, letters, stories and songs can be an excellent way to promote language practice and to produce new materials that other learners can enjoy.