Knowledge Network will be trading in Australia under the trademark KnowNet.
Release date Dec 2002
Note: Umtata is now Mthatha






Report on ILAMM (Integrated Learning and Mentoring Methodology) Course attended from 09 Dec 2002 to 12 Dec 2002 at Knowledge Network

by Nokwanda Patricia Magwentshu

The ILAMM course is very enriching indeed. What I found very impressing is the way in which the ILAMM course is designed. There are some things I observed which I would like to comment on:
  1. As an educator involved in the implementation of OBE in the Umtata area, I was amazed at the way that ILAMM links with Outcomes Based Education (OBE). Teachers in this area are being trained in OBE and many of them are frustrated with the language and the design of Curriculum 2005. They find the methodology too complicated. The Department is doing its best though to simplify the design and the language used in OBE.

    What I found exciting was that to me ILAMM is nothing else but a simplified OBE. ILAMM applies that OBE approach in a simplified language and design. If ILAMM can be introduced to the schools in this area to train teachers in IT, it can act both as enrichment as well as a simplification of OBE. The approach used in ILAMM integrates smoothly with other learning areas in the school curricula.

    ILAMM promotes the same principles as OBE because it is goal-oriented, project-based, outcomes-based and operates in a non-competitive learning environment. ILAMM can help a lot in the OBE training of the teachers in the Umtata area.
  2. Knowledge Network as a company
    Besides interacting with my facilitators during my training sessions, I also had time to meet the other members of staff during my tea and lunch breaks. I noticed that Knowledge Network as a company has an organisational culture that is conducive to good working relations. I noticed how the staff related to each other and to me as a client. I felt at home and I was impressed with their working conditions.

    I had a chat with most of them and they were very friendly. Even the lady who is making the tea had a lot to tell me about the activities of the company and how she is also developed to do other jobs like photocopying and book binding. The Managing Director is a very pleasant lady. I learned from the chat that we had what the company is doing to improve the IT education in South Africa especially in the schools. I enjoyed the healthy teas and the lunches that were prepared for me by Knowledge Network.
  3. Feedback about the concept of ILAMM
    The main issue here is the methodology of teaching IT. ILAMM focuses on how the learners learn, the way they learn, what they learn and the environment in which they learn. This methodology is then used to implement the learning of IT which is the main purpose of the course. ILAMM creates an environment where learners are not passive recipients but are actively involved in the learning process. The teacher acts as a mentor or facilitator. The advantage of this methodology is that learners are motivated, inspired, guided, directed and focused.

    IT skills are developed and in the process, creativity, lateral thinking, logic, problem-solving ability, and integration or cross-pollination with other learning areas form part of the learning process. Each learner is allowed to develop at his / her own pace, managing his time to achieve the required outcome.
  4. Feedback on the course
    The course itself, as mentioned earlier, is very enriching. It runs smoothly and is not boring at all. Rote learning is not encouraged at all. One learns such that it is easy to remember what was learnt. The lessons are flexible. They can be applied at any level of learning as long as the educator uses a suitable brief for that particular level. The facilitator is encouraged to be creative and to encourage the learners as well. The methodology is easy to follow and the session delivery is fun for both learners and educators.

    The facilitators were very patient and clear in their delivery. I liked their openness and honesty. You know your position without feeling embarrassed. They acknowledged it when I was doing well and encouraged me to improve where necessary.

I wish Knowledge Network would do its best to open offices in our disadvantaged area so that our communities can take advantage of and be exposed to such IT programmes like graphics, web site building, and professional development workshops for educators.

I would also like to thank the Managing Director of Knowledge Network, Jil, my facilitators, Janet and Ann, and all the staff for everything that they did for me.

Last but not least I thank the PUM Women's Community Project for affording me this wonderful opportunity.





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Date of update: 18 February 2009