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Technology Speeds the Literacy Process

Tags: Literacy, Mission News, Prayer
POSTED ON Sep 25, 2016 by Rosie Cochran

When It Doesn’t Work

“A few years ago we did some literacy training on a field,” said Jerry and Joyce McDaniels, NTM International Literacy Coordinators. “One team said, ‘We’ve tried literacy. It doesn’t work. It doesn’t matter. We’re just going to move ahead.’”

How do you respond to that? You go ahead with the training and let the material speak for itself. You introduce Literacy Starter.

Creating a Dream List

Literacy Starter started as a dream list written up by Jerry and Joyce, along with others involved with literacy in NTM. It was everything they wished a computer program could do for them in creating literacy primers.

But that’s all it was. A dream list. A wish list.

Then Rand Burgett, a programmer with NTM said, “Let’s start talking about this literacy program you want.” A few years later, and now a computer program exists that’s transforming and speeding up the process of how literacy primers are made.

“The program is more than we ever thought it could be,” said Jerry. After the church planting teams invest months entering data into Literacy Starter, “we can go to a place ... and within three weeks with three teams at the same time, we can have all five primers and all the readers done. … I would say that Literacy Starter saves probably a year and a half of painstaking labor to get the primers done.”

And that’s great, because the McDaniels recognize that “literacy isn’t something New Tribes invented. It’s God’s idea for people to read.”

Seeing the Light!

Jerry and Joyce are understandably excited about this new program.

They were also excited when a member of the “we’ve-tried-that-it-doesn’t-work” team came to them and said, “We’ve seen the light, and we would really just like it if you could help us.”

That team now has a very effective literacy program. They tried it again, and this time it worked!

Pray for the McDaniels in their role as International Literacy Coordinators.