Botswana Change Projects
In Botswana, all the Change Projects sought to implement SDG 4 in alignment to the Botswana’s Revised National Policy on Education of 1994, which is the overarching policy on which all other policies and programmes are anchored.
The Change Projects are aimed at showcasing ESD at the institutional level to effect change that would contribute to educational quality improvement and enhance the achievement of SDG 4 and other SDGs.
Change Projects focus on curricula innovations and institutional community engagement. They address Botswana’s policies, plans and strategies (Botswana’s Vision 2036, National Development Plan 11 (NDP 11), Education and Training Sector Strategic Plan (ETSSP 2015-2020), the National Human Resources Development Strategy and Outcome Based Education (OBE)). These policies place emphasis on quality education, universal access to education, equitable quality education and lifelong learning, which is a clear indication of their relevance to SDG 4-Education 2030.
In all the Change Projects there are plans for scaling for impact in the whole institution and community.
Change Project Stories
Teacher trainers at Serowe College in Botswana have come up with an innovative solution: creating teaching materials from recycled rubbish.
Teacher trainers and student teachers collect, sort and clean waste material. Waste material is then used to create different learning tools like musical instruments, masks and toys. Student teachers are afforded the opportunity to explore their creative talent during this process.
Change Project: Improved use of used oil for soap making: A practical learning project
Albertinah Phiri, Molepolole College of Education (Secondary Education focus)
Phiri has identified a problem at Molepolole College of Education. There is used oil from the College kitchen that is meant to be collected every Wednesday, but this is not done. “The place is dirty, and the used oil pollutes the environment”. Phiri noted that the oil could be used for other purposes, for example making soap.
Phiri’s project plan was to invite community women to the college to demonstrate soap making. Her community of practice in the project included students and Science and Arts lecturers. Phiri met with some old ladies in the village of Molepolole to demonstrate soap making, including some ingredients like wooden charcoal for cosmetic therapy.
Thereafter, Phiri intended to assess significant learning and the integration of cultural knowledge and Science in the project through soap making with her students. She further planned to assess whether the problem of waste oil would be solved through this Change Project. Phiri hopes the Change Project will also improve community engagement, especially with unemployed youths in the village.
“We do not have to think about anything that is far in order to do a Change Project”
Change Project: Empowering the college community with business skills through a Business Clinic
Botho Thobega, Gaborone Technical College (GTC) (TVET focus)
Thobega identified that the GTC community has gaps in practical entrepreneurship skills, office skills, accounting skills and personal & professional development skills which impedes efficiency and delivery in the workplace. She then sought to equip GTC community with skills aligned to the knowledge-based economy required in industry – a departure from a resource-based economy that characterizes Botswana.
Thobega planned to start her Change Project with a group that she is able to influence – the GTC student community. Thobega envisions empowering GTC community with business education skills through creating a strong, well-coordinated community of practice. She started her Change Project by lobbying for a business clinic centre and implementing workshops, the first of which was a minute-taking workshop. The workshop was successful and yielded some positive results as the GTC Curriculum Committee adopted the template and the style that was used at the minute taking workshop to be used as a college style.
Thobega also hopes to initiate a business market day and mobilise other GTC departments and other stakeholders to participate in a Business Market Day where students will be engaged in different activities e.g. event management, entrepreneurial skills, budgeting and environmental education.
She also intends for the Business Clinic to continuously run the different workshops for the college community to address existing/arising needs and gaps and to develop a Facebook page.
“I will be able to change the face of the institution by the Change Project that I will have. A business market day can also attract students and people from outside the institution.”
Change Project: Empowering Tlokweng village community with soap making skills
Cannie Seleka, Tlokweng College of Education (Primary Education focus)
Seleka decided to focus on the SDG 4 in her Change Project and address a lack of ESD policy and awareness in her college. Originally, Seleka was concerned with student teachers who go on to teaching practice with very little knowledge of the Breakthrough to Setswana methods and approaches.
Seleka’s initial Change Project plan was to implement micro-teaching, peer teaching, and workshops for teachers. However, upon engagement with her community of practice, which included members of the Student Representative Council (SRC) and her colleagues, they decided to reflect on the potential to equip students with soap-making skills that were practised by village women of Tlokweng in the past.
The project was triggered by improper disposal of used cooking oil from the college kitchen which Seleka identified could be used for soap making to bring culture and life experiences into learning.
Seleka engaged the College Laboratory Technician to do the initial experiments for soap making by using oil and some chemicals in the laboratory.
“Whenever I teach my subject I try to infuse ESD so that students can become more aware of their actions”
Change Project: Community Service-Learning for improving relevance TVET
Gomolemo Morapedi Kilano, Francistown College of Technical and Vocational Education (TVET focus)
Kilano planned to use transformative learning approaches (community service-learning approach) to enhance the quality of teaching and learning at Francistown College of Technical and Vocational Education (FCTVE). Kilano selected one module where students could do a community service learning project, where they started by doing a needs analysis to establish an environmental problem in the community.
Kilano divided the students according to the various projects they undertook. Kilano had the students provide a detailed plan for the implementation of their projects. Tools that guided needs analysis were developed. The accounts group ran a workshop with the Mahudiri Primary School fund-raising committee, to equip the committee with basic accounting skills. The hair dressing group conducted a workshop on health and safety for Francistown salon and hair dressing entrepreneurs, while the tourism group have made consultation with Gerald Estates Village Development committee to map out ways in which the recreational park can be maintained. Finally, the Agricultural Economics group have made consultation with some stakeholders including the Francistown City Council Employees to establish ways in which waste can be used as part of the economic generating activities.
Kilano and her department have compiled schedules for supervising the projects. Kilano engaged students in developing self-evaluation tools and the students are expected to self-evaluate by evaluating the whole project and making recommendations for improvement in the future. Kilano’s department adopted the significant learning assessment tool to grade the students on their projects. This grade will constitute a certain percentage to the final module mark. Tools for self-evaluation and assessment of significant learning have been adapted and standardized by the department. All evidence collected is to be submitted in a portfolio for a chosen module.
“I now teach with an open mind, including ecological aspects in my teaching. FCTVE was in the process of infusing community service learning as part of the teaching approaches; this training has come at the right time.”
Change Project: Practical skills development for primary school teachers and pupils
Taswika Kanasi – Serowe College of Education (ECE focus)
Kanasi noticed that teachers in training have a lack of practical skills to use available resources for teaching. There are however many locally available recyclable materials which are not utilised and which are polluting the environment. Moreover, there are no policies for the integration of ESD at the College.
Kanasi’s innovative plan is to construct musical instruments, puppets and other teaching resources using recycled materials. Kanasi, together with her community of practice, involved students in making musical instruments, toys and masks and engaged local elderly people to appreciate and gain indigenous knowledge in materials development. The instruments will be used in lessons.
Through being involved in this project, student teachers have become aware of ESD issues and have become more creative, enhancing the social environment of learning through dance, story telling, news telling, drama, role playing, singing, miming, and creating picture news reports.
Kanasi plans to work with students to create artefacts with children in reception classes during their teaching practice in schools in the village. Kanasi would like to see this project expand to other departments.
“The approach to teaching music will be improved by integrating environmental issues. This information [from CAP-ESD] will be included as the institution crafts its strategic plan for the year.”
Change Project: Technical education for reducing greenhouse gas emissions
Ntsuke also values indigenous stories and hopes to seek out alternative methods and ways of environmental protection. To highlight the provision of sustainable quality education, Ntsuke worked with his students in developing a model vehicle emission device that keeps emissions in check to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from old cars.
Ntsuke will assess significant learning through demonstrations of environmental protection and conscious human actions in his students. In this way he hopes to ignite an inclination for his students to continuously engage in transformational human conduct as they trial this model device with car mechanics and motorists in the community.
“The process of developing a Change Project has helped me to develop an in-depth understanding of the significance of sustainability. I have gained insights into how to develop an inclusive working Change Project ideal for transforming community activities that contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. I can look within the current curriculum for workable ESD opportunities and further improve or influence policy and decision making towards ESD.”
Change Project: Learning modern technology skills in a computer clinic
Maemo Champi, Oodi College of Applied Arts and Technology (TVET focus)
Champi identified that a lack of computer maintenance slows down both the delivery of programmes as well as the learning process, and that this needs addressing. Champi aims to set up a computer clinic lab where students can clean viruses, replace computer parts, and trouble shoot.
Champi hopes that this project will allow him to assess learners’ 21st century competences. Champi hopes to re-use computer parts and extend the project to other nearby colleges and schools.
“Being involved in SST has improved the institutional ability to support learning”