A teacher in Ghana has received global recognition after photos of him teaching his students about Microsoft Word went viral. Since the school didn’t have PCs which could be used to teach the students about Windows and Microsoft Word, the information and communication technology teacher Richard Appiah Akoto decided to draw an entire Microsoft Word processing window on a blackboard with multi-colored chalk.
Akoto is the ICT teacher at the Betenase M/A Junior High School in Sekyedomase, which is about two and a half hours north of the city of Kumasi. The school doesn’t have any computers even though 14 and 15 year old students are expected to pass a national exam with ICT as one of the subjects. They can’t progress to high school if they don’t pass that exam.
Akoto posted pictures of himself drawing a Word processing window in class on Facebook and has received global admiration after the photos went viral showing how he tried to explain computers to his students even without having an actual computer.
“This is not my first time [of drawing] it. I have been doing it anytime I am in the classroom…I like posting pictures on Facebook so I just felt like [sharing it],” Akoto said.
Cameroonian tech entrepreneur Rebecca Enonchong pointed him out to Microsoft on Twitter and the company promised to equip him with “a device from one of our partners, and access to our MCE program” aside from free professional development resources. However, Akoto says that the school needs about 50 computers for his classes to really impart ICT education to the students.
Akoto does have a personal laptop but he doesn’t use it to teach in class as the features are different from what’s in the official syllabus for students. He’s required to teach students with a desktop as their reference, how they have to connect a system unit and monitor, and how they have to boot it. “If you bring a charged laptop to class and just press the power button, then all of a sudden, everything will be on”, that does not work, he says.