Development of Educational Materials

Khoj has been very actively involved in the development of educational materials for the last twenty years.

In early 1990s Khoj, inspired by the Freirian principles, launched its first project of developing a teacher's manual, teaching aids and other educational materials, in collaboration with Oxfam Pakistan Field Office, Islamabad. This work earned Khoj international acclaim. Later the teachers' manual, a flip book, flash cards and 15 story based follow up booklets were published in India jointly by UNICEF, Andhra Pradesh Directorate for Non-Formal Education and Mahita (a Hyderabad based NGO).

Khoj Education Program has the distinction of being the only program in the country that does not focus only on literacy but offers a comprehensive alternative system of adult education that includes subjects ranging from human health to political education. The undercurrent and the cross cutting theme of the work has been gender equity and social justice.

Khoj Education Program for women has been divided into two levels; core level and advanced level. In the core level, the focus has been on the following:

The ability to read and write, to comprehend and to express oneself,

  • Building alternative empowering and liberating consciousness,
  • The ability to do basic arithmetic,
  • Understanding of the root causes of the social and economic problems facing the community,
  • Encouragement to take on the social and economic problems

Building on the core level and responding to the learning needs a wide range of topics have been addressed and developed over the years.

Save the Children-UK supported development of 15 follow-up booklets for women's education in 1995.

Khoj collaborated with CIDA WDPr and CIDA-PAGE on three projects of women's education and development in the rural Punjab. This collaboration facilitated experimentation of a number of ideas in curriculum development. If those experiments are categorized into different subjects, the following subjects have been identified: general health issues, reproductive health, childcare, first aid, environment, nutrition, home economics, agriculture, livestock and poultry keeping, post-harvest crop management. The outcomes of these projects in terms of curriculum development materialized in the form of focused on manuals for rural women on literacy and numeracy and post literacy materials on livestock keeping, kitchen gardening and nutrition.

The women's program gave birth to elementary education for children called Learning from Life. The following educational materials have been developed in collaboration with SCUK, Islamabad:

A teacher's manual called Rahbar; a flipbook containing codes; Urdu alphabet flash cards; picture-word cards; playing cards; workbook to improve handwriting; posters highlighting importance of education and a post literacy reader on CRC.

The second and advanced phase of children's curriculum development programme includes health; nutrition; agriculture; mathematics; English language and science.

The latest addition is a reading manual that focuses on culturally relevant, contextualized and phonemically and phonetically based English language teaching.

Khoj has developed a range of educational materials on agriculture in collaboration with Pesticide Action Network Asia & Pacific, FAO Rome and AHITI, Peshawar.

Nasira Habib, Founder of Khoj and the brain behind Khoj methodology and curriculum is the winner of FAO award for development and dissemination of extension materials in agriculture for the year 1998.