Indigenous students log on for literacy

Primary school students at Northern Territory schools are learning language, comprehension, and reading skills online thanks to a university study supported by The Foundation.

The Foundation CEO, Brian Doolan said Charles Darwin University is exploring whether the multimedia program ‘ABRACADABRA’ (ABRA) can improve Indigenous literacy skills in the early childhood years (ages 4-8).

"Fred felt strongly that improving Aboriginal life expectancy was about a whole lot of things – including improved education," Doolan said.

"Remote school communities face unique challenges including high teacher turnover and families regularly moving on.

"We hope this methodology is effective in helping young Aboriginal kids learn."

ABRA uses engaging computer-based stories, activities and cartoon characters to improve reading.

The program was developed in Canada and is being adapted for use in Indigenous communities through classroom trials and community feedback.

This is the final year in the three-year study. In 2010, the scope has been widened to include a dozen schools, with support from the Australian Research Council.

>Find out more about the Australian program.
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