GLOBAL CONNECTIONS AND EXCHANGEDIGITAL YOUTH DIALOGUE                                                                   No...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTAN                                                        Ainur Kutmanova, specialist at the State Com...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANAll teachers have cell phones and almost all are      The learning doesn’t end here – the teachers i...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANwas equally rewarding for Mamutov: “[The Edu-         Bringing students to Kyrgyzstan’s greatest thi...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANgram, and meet girls who implement their own          to conduct IT and leadership trainings for you...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANThe TAGs plan to keep in touch with their new        Zhailobek uulu’s video was rated in the top thr...
GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANONLINE PROJECTS UPDATE: Fall 2011   Sarah Stott, Cuthbertson High School,           Jacqueline Sta...
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GCE/DYD Newsletter for December 2011


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Global Connections and Exchange is a program of the United States Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Digital Youth Dialogue is funded by the United States Embassy in Kyrgyzstan.

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GCE/DYD Newsletter for December 2011

  1. 1. GLOBAL CONNECTIONS AND EXCHANGEDIGITAL YOUTH DIALOGUE November 2011 NewsletterIN THIS ISSUE:Student Volunteers Enrich Online Kyrgyz LanguageContentEnglish Language Teachers Learn How to Use TextMessaging for Better CommunicationKyrgyzstan’s Educational Portal Connects Studentswith Role Models in Virtual DiscussionsAlumni Raise Awareness about Tech Age Girls Projectat JashtarCamp 2011 in OshTech Age Girl Alumna Wins Soros Grant, ImplementsNew Project in Southern KyrgyzstanGCE Student Develops Public Service Announcement @GCEKyrgyzstan Global Connections and Exchange is a program of the United States Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Digital Youth Dialogue is funded by the United States Embassy in Kyrgyzstan.
  2. 2. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTAN Ainur Kutmanova, specialist at the State Commis-Student Volunteers Enrich Online sion for the Kyrgyz Language, an organizing part-Kyrgyz Language Content ner in hosting Kyrgyz Wikipedia Day, explained the importance of making sites like WikipediaOn November 3, six volunteers helped 15 contrib- robust for users in Kyrgyzstan: “Youth do not goutors upload articles to the Kyrgyz language Wik- to libraries often, but they do conduct researchipedia, a free, user-generated encyclopedia, dur- on the internet; I think it is vital for developinging an event held in Bishkek titled “Kyrgyz Wik- the Kyrgyz language that we [continue] to addipedia Day.” The volunteers – students and edu- articles. I am glad that students are volunteeringcators – arrived with significant amounts of con- to add Kyrgyz language content to Wikipedia.”tent to contribute to the site, but lacked theknowledge to upload the articles themselves. Artyk Osmonaliev, an 8th-grade student volun- teer, uploaded five articles during the event: “Today I learned how to upload articles to the Kyrgyz Wikipedia; it was fun to learn and do something helpful.” Kyrgyz Wikipedia Day was organized by the Glob- al Connections & Exchange and the Digital Youth Dialogue programs, with the assistance of the State Commission for the Kyrgyz Language under the President of the Kyrgyz Republic. English Language Teachers Learn Volunteers helped contributors upload 136 new arti- How to Use Text Messaging for Better cles to the Kyrgyz-language Wikipedia CommunicationWikipedia is a free online encyclopedia whose On November 12, twelve teachers from the Eng-content is entirely user-generated and governed lish Language Educators’ professional associationby a user-elected board. While the Kyrgyz lan- “FORUM” learned how to post blog updates, navi-guage version of the site is dwarfed by others, gate the internet, and use internet-based tools tocontribution has begun to take off in 2011: arti- send SMS messages at an Information and Com-cle counts have more than doubled since Decem- munications Technology (ICT) training in Bishkek.ber 2010 to 3,900, and the active community has Many of the teachers were very new to the inter-seen a 1,800% growth in that same time. GCE net, and while some had experimented withand DYD are helping fuel this movement. With some of these tools, they lacked skills to usethe help of the trainers, event attendees up- them efficiently and to their professional bene-loaded a total of 136 new pieces to the site by fit. Now, with the new knowledge they havethe end of one day — an increase of 3% to the gained, they are taking strides to more effective-entire body of Kyrgyz language articles on Wik- ly use modern technology in their teaching andipedia. for better communication.
  3. 3. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANAll teachers have cell phones and almost all are The learning doesn’t end here – the teachers ininternet users, but they were not aware of how attendance have already made plans to improvethese tools could help streamline some time con- the web presence of their association. Recogniz-suming aspects of their work, such as connecting ing that FORUM currently lacks a Facebook page,with colleagues or communicating with their stu- they will be returning for a follow-up session ondents by inviting them to upcoming English lan- December 10 to learn the essentials of adminis-guage events. During the training, the teachers tering a quality Facebook page.learned how to create and update professionalblogs, as well as learning how to operate Front- Kyrgyzstan’s Educational PortallineSMS, a software tool that allows a user to Connects Students with Role Modelssend text messages to multiple recipients (such in Virtual Discussionsas students or colleagues). Now, the teachersplan to use what they have learned to launchblogs, create and conduct events, and use Front- This fall, on Kyrgyzstan’s Educational Portal, stu-lineSMS for better communication between their dents are connecting with role models from dif-students and peers. ferent professional backgrounds to get advice, and learn from their experience, without having to travel any further than to their schools’ com- puter labs. On October 8, thirty stu- dents took part in a virtual discussion with Tilek Mamutov, an Ireland-based Google employee working as an Internal Applications Developer and Quality Evalu- ator, originally from Bishkek. Students had a chance to ask questions about programming, technology, and his career with Google, after re- viewing a podcast created by Mamutov on his ex- English language educators from the association perience working in his position at the company. FORUM learn how to use blogs and FrontlineSMS to better connect with colleagues and students In more than 50 comments, the students asked Mamutov about technology, his upbringing and education, and his view on setting goals.“Now that we can organize FORUM’s work withFrontlineSMS, we will be sending SMS messages to The discussion was very popular, and left manycoordinate activities, send reminders and receive students as impressed as they were inspired.confirmations by text messaging. This technology Nargiza Asanalieva, a 7th grader at Naryn’swill definitely help us.” said Gulnara Akunova, School No. 7, shared, “I am so proud of Mamutov.FORUM director, on the benefit she foresees from He is professional and is helping his home countrymembers’ new knowledge. by inspiring us, by giving advice.” The experience
  4. 4. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANwas equally rewarding for Mamutov: “[The Edu- Bringing students to Kyrgyzstan’s greatest think-cational Portal] is great; I am happy to be able to ers and doers is far easier today than in the past,talk to students back home and help them how- thanks to the internet provided at GCE and DYDever I can. With technology, distance means schools. Students like Akmaral Muratbek kyzy, anothing.” student at School No. 7 in Naryn, agrees: “The discussion [with Mirbek Toktogarev] was very use- On October 8, the GCE ful for students outside of the capital, because and DYD programs addi- we don’t have an opportunity to talk to people tionally held a virtual like him here. Usually, we see them on TV, but discussion for Kyrgyz- talking directly in this forum and asking questions stan’s students, titled was truly amazing and inspiring.” “How to Be a Leader,” with Mirbek Tok- Alumni Raise Awareness about Techtogaraev, Project Coordinator at the Bishkek Age Girls Project at JashtarCampBusiness Club, and an organizer of Barcamp, 2011 in OshJashtarCamp, and TEDxBishkek. Although Tok-togaraev is only 24, he is a pioneering thinker atthe crossroads of IT and education in his country. On November 20, 2011, forty leaders from differ-40 students took part in this discussion, generat- ent spheres in Kyrgyzstan came to Osh to shareing more than 50 questions on Toktogaraev’s success stores, ideas, knowledge and their expe-plans for the future and his advice for them as an rience with over three hundred attendees atupcoming generation of young leaders. JashtarCamp 2011, an informal youth conference in its third year in Kyrgyzstan. JashtarCamp billsToktogarev expressed his gratitude for being able itself as a youth action conference, helping in-to speak to the youth, sharing that he too bene- spire and give key knowledge to youth in Kyrgyz-fited from the exchange. “The students made me stan to successfully become agents of change inthink of my own future,” he reflected. their communities. Among those invited were four Tech Age Girls: Zhara Asizova, Zina Kabylbek The Educational Portal kyzy, Nazik Asranbekova, and Zulaiho Makambaeva. hosted discussions with Mirsuljan Namazaliev, Ex- The alumni presented on the importance of the ecutive Director of the Tech Age Girls project, and explained the TAG Central Asia Free Market process to the attendees, who listened passion- Institute throughout Octo- ately to their descriptions of the community pro- ber as well. This discussion jects they each implemented during their partici-received more than 70 responses. The topic of pation, and the follow up work they are imple-the discussion was “Why there is a need to be menting in Kyrgyzstan’s south.socially active?” Namazaliev, only 24 and one ofthe youngest leaders in Kyrgyzstan, shared his “It was very useful and interesting to learn aboutstory of success with the 60 students who partici- the results and achievements of Tech Age Girls,pated. to have an opportunity to meet with the partici- pants and winners of the TAG US exchange pro-
  5. 5. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANgram, and meet girls who implement their own to conduct IT and leadership trainings for projects in their home towns,” shared The girls held training sessions in three highLazat Takyrbasheva, Web Editor at Internews schools throughout the city, teaching studentsNetwork Kyrgyzstan. how to use email, Facebook, Twitter, and blogs to connect and communicate with each other. In The TAGs also addition to these communications skills, the 90 shared the participants discussed leadership, teambuilding, stage with and conflict mitigation with the TAGs, finally reg- GCE staff istering themselves on Kyrgyzstan’s Educational m e m b e r Portal to remain in contact with their trainers. Tynchtyk Zha- Their five days in Osh even found them at an or- nadylov, who phanage, organizing local youth to take part shared tools while delivering a similar message of hope that for youth who with perseverance, anything may be achieved. wish to learn TAGs explain the project to key computing JashtarCamp attendees skills, but might nothave access to a GCE participating school.Demonstrating video trainings created for GCEand available online, Zhanadylov’s message toyouth was that even if they do not have the op-portunity to participate in IT trainings, there aretools for them to take charge of their own re-mote learning. Zhanadylov also introduced GCE’sEducational Portal, where youth can participatein discussions, find online educational resources,and share interesting ideas with each other. The TAGs Conducted Leadership and IT training in Osh, Kyrgyzstan’s largest southern cityTAG Wins Soros Grant, LaunchesProject in Southern Kyrgyzstan Zina Kabylbek kyzy commented on her time in Kyrgyzstan’s south, “I cannot even express howIn October 2010, Zhanara Asizova, a TAG Alumna this project changed my life, before the TAG Ifrom Kant, applied for a grant from the Soros didn’t even know how to use computers, nowFoundation in Kyrgyzstan’s Youth Action Fund TAG opened me so many opportunities, I becameand received more than $1600 to launch “TAGs confident.… I learned to set up goals and accom-Advance Volunteer Activity in Osh.” plish them. Now, I am sharing my skills and knowledge with students like me, they can devel-As part of their project, Asizova and teammates op as me, they just need somebody to showZina Kabylbek kyzy, Nazik Asranbekova, and Zu- which way and show the opportunities that theylaiho Makambaeva flew to Osh city for five days have.”
  6. 6. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANThe TAGs plan to keep in touch with their new Zhailobek uulu’s video was rated in the top threetrainees, answering questions and offering guid- best videos by the guest trainers and was privi-ance over Kyrgyzstan’s Educational Network, as leged to be broadcast on public television. Thethey seek new ways to impact communities in trainer of the seminar Georgiy Molodcov, Crea-their country—in their own backyards or far from tive Director of “Social Advertisement Laborato-home. ry”, and his fel- low trainers alsoGCE Student Develops Public Service recommendedAnnouncement that Zhailoobek uulu’s video take part in upcomingAfter learning about the event via the GCE- international fes-provided internet at his school, 11th grader tivals. “The vid-Zholoman Zhailoobek uulu was accepted to the In September, Zholoman Zhailoo- eo that was cre-“Creating Public Service Advertisements” semi- bek uulu attended a seminar on ated by Zhailoo-nar from September 10-15 in Bishkek. Seeking PSAs in Bishkek bek uulu wasguidance from GCE Teachers and TAG alumni, he very simple anddeveloped a strong application and was the sole easy to perceive for the audience. I am sure herepresentative from Naryn to this event. will achieve his goals with his passion to work,” said Molodcov.At the seminar, the 15 participants analyzed casestudies in using media to raise awareness, and The skills Zhailoobek uulu developed during thelearned how to create their own PSAs, developing IT trainings given by GCE teachers and TAG alum-skills to compose video concepts, scripts, and ni helped him to effectively use IT tools to makestoryboards, as well as the key tools in video re- video and be better prepared for the event.cording and editing. “I am really glad that I had a chance to partici-There were 15 participants in total from all over pate in this seminar, thanks to the skills that IKyrgyzstan, who applied through application. gained during GCE’s IT trainings,” he said. “IZhailoobek uulu was the only participant from have learned about public service announce-Naryn, thanks to the trainings of GCE MITE ments, how they can affect people, and how youOmurbekova, he knew how to write an essay and can show deep meaning through your creativity.sent his application. At the seminar participants This seminar was truly valuable for my future ac-learned how to create social videos, worked on tivities.”scenarios in groups, and created short videos. Onthe last day of the seminar Zhailobek uulu with Zhailobek uulu’s video can be seen athis group presented their work to the audience. participants came up with theirown scripts, defended the concept, worked onstoryboard and after that, shot a video.
  7. 7. GCE & DYD - KYRGYZSTANONLINE PROJECTS UPDATE: Fall 2011 Sarah Stott, Cuthbertson High School,  Jacqueline Stack/Don Mason, H. Cheney Waxhaw, NC / Aizada Apazova, Karakol & Tech High School, Manchester, CT / Sho- Ratbu Satarova, Jalal-Abad: History Boxes hista Hadjimatova, Kyzyl Kiya; Nazgul Ka- (1 project) bylbaeva, Karakol: A Day in the Life Pho- tojournals (2 projects) Nicolle Boujaber-Diederichs, Cypress Creek High School, Orlando, FL / Aigul  John Garner, Greencastle High School, Dzhumagulova, Bazar Korgon; Roza Greencastle, IN / Ulan Chalpakov, Bish- Moldobekova, Aral,Talas; Shahribonum kek: Introduction to Remote Sensing (1 Igamberdieva, Kyzyl Kiya; Aliya Ganzina, project) Jalal-Abad & Kahramon Shakirov, Uch Korgon: Global Grocery Baskets (5 projects)  Nicholas Kirschman, Webster Groves High School, Webster Groves, MO / Nurgul Pakyrova, Batken; Zhyldyzkan Aiylchieva, Gulcha; Ravshan Abakulov, Osh; & Anara Omurbekova, Naryn: Cross Cultural Psychol- ogy (2 projects)