Lughati, an initiative launched to support new generation of school-aged children to learn Arabic the smart way, has announced that the fourth phase will kick off next October in continuation of their efforts to protect Arabic language and increase its usage among children.
Building on the success of phase one, distributing tablets to 5060 students, H.H. Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, has approved the new identity for the programme me as "Lughati". The second and third phases saw 2959 and 3100 students respectively, receiving the devices. The completion of phase three means that a total of 11,119 students in all Sharjah government schools have access to smart devices to learn Arabic.
The tablets are equipped with the ‘Horouf’ smart application developed by Horouf Educational Publishing, a subsidiary of Kalimat Publishing Group, which specialises in creating contemporary and innovative educational tools for children in Arabic.
The combined budget of the three previous phases of the initiative, was AED47.5 million (AED17 million for phase one, AED15.5 million for phase two and AED15 million for phase three). The figures reflect the initiative’s relentless efforts to achieve the predetermined goals, and to expand its scope. Phase three was completed last February.
Badria Al Ali, Manager of the Lughati Initiative, said, "H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, has launched this first-of-its-kind initiative to preserve and protect the Arabic language, being the language of the Holy Quran, poetry and literature, and to highlight its creativity and beauty".
She added, "The focus of H.H.’s vision is on children and students, who are now less interested in Arabic and more attracted to modern technology such as tablets. The programme was originally launched in 2013 to assist students in Sharjah schools by utilising modern technological tools and smart apps to make learning Arabic easy, simple and more accessible to them. It is designed to improve the educational system and protect the Arabic language".
Regarding the importance of modern technology in supporting Lughati’s objectives, Al Ali said, "Our approach to use smart devices contributed to the goal of delivering information to students directly and easily. Their direct interaction with the visual content displayed on tablets helped them improve their learning skills. I believe that the initiative proved that proper use of technology is instrumental in expanding students’ perspectives and enhancing their creativity. "
"According to a survey conducted at the end of phase three to get teachers’ feedback on the initiative, 96% of participants reported that ‘Horouf’ application is strongly connected to the syllabus, meets the educational objectives and supports children’s smart Arabic learning. They also said that they are using tablet devices and ‘Horouf’ application 3-4 times a week", she said.
Al Ali added, "Phase four, which is set to be launched in October, targets thousands of students in the emirate. Our ultimate goal is to improve students’ Arabic proficiency, creativity, and nurture their sense of belonging to their homeland and nation."