More RACHEL systems in Guatemala schools
For the second year, a Global Grant led by District 6380's CK clubs sponsored the installation of RACHEL digital WiFi hotspot systems and laptops in schools in NW Guatemala. 
 
After a group of people associated with the Chatham Rotary Club last August visited some of the first year's schools, we decided that we should concentrate on providing more laptops, and not bother with tablets.  Fortunately, we were then able to get the price of the laptops (Chromebooks) down to $150 each - and so were able to purchase 230 laptops for 23 schools. The number of laptops per school varied depending on the size of the school. One school was dropped as they did not send teachers to the training session. 
 
During the week of February 24, we conducted 4 half-day training sessions where teachers were given an overview of the RACHEL systems.  More importantly, they learned about the SOLE (Self-Organized Learning Environment) approach to teaching.  Rather than the teacher being the source of all knowledge, the teacher asks questions – and the students use the resource material, accessible through RACHEL, to come up with answers.  In our classes, the teachers, acting as if they were students, grouped themselves in threes and fours and prepared posters or skits to illustrate the question “how do babies breathe in the womb”.  Their enthusiasm at taking on this role, and their subsequent enthusiasm that they imparted to their schools when we delivered the equipment was very exciting. In the photo, two teachers from Nuevo Edén (where Casa Colibrí is located) are demonstrating an umbilical cord.
 
But the heart of the project was that white round thing in the photos – a RACHEL Plus system.  Each RACHEL Plus has a TB (1000GB) of information, including Guatemalan textbooks and thousands of other reference and reading books, Wikipedia, educational videos and learning games. The RACHEL generates a WiFi hotspot, so that any laptop, tablet or smartphone in the area can browse through the massive RACHEL library, and download material to read elsewhere. A RACHEL system becomes a community resource.

Four clubs in the Chatham-Kent area donated to the Global Grant, along with a couple of clubs in Washington State and one in California.  Other Rotary clubs are targeting other areas of Guatemala with RACHEL systems.