The Ta'allam app, developed by Smart and local partners, makes it fun for Muslim and even non-Muslim children to learn about Islam and the Arabic language.
A mobile application recently launched by Smart Communications now makes it easier and more fun for children to learn the Arabic language and Islamic values.
The Ta’allam (Arabic for “to learn”) app – which was field tested at Datu Molod Integrated School in Maasim and Datu Pangolima Integrated School in Malapatan, both in Sarangani – is so effective that even non-Muslim kids have started to attend ALIVE (Arabic Language and Values Education) classes in the school, said teacher Ustadz Saide Tobias.
Now downloadable for free on Google Play, the app teaches users how to write and pronounce Arabic letters and numbers. It also teaches word association. It also contains videos on Islamic prayers, stories, and practices.
The Ta’allam app will be deployed to ALIVE teachers of General Santos (GenSan) City and Sarangani province. It was developed by Smart in partnership with the Department of Education, the local government units of GenSan and Sarangani, ACLC College of General Santos, Skeptron Business Solutions, Mercy Foundation, MensaheTV, Young Moro Professionals, and local Muslim leaders.
“Non-Muslim kids in my school now understand early that saying ‘salam’ and ‘takbir’ is not a call for violence or war,” Tobias said. “Assalamu Alaykum” is a greeting of peace while Takbir, the Arabic phrase of “Allahu Akbar,” means “God is the greatest.”
During the recent launch of the app, Sarangani Gov. Steve Solon said Ta’allam would help Moro as well as Christian and IP (indigenous people) learners understand Muslim culture and religion.
“Smart has always been a great partner and supporter of our efforts in strengthening education in the province, and knowing the small number of ALIVE teachers in Sarangani, I know this will be a big help,” he said.
Some students of H. Bayan Elementary School tested the Ta’allam app during the launch.
“Parang laro lang. Magdrawing ka ng letters tapos may sounds na magsabi kung paano mo sabihin [It is like playing. We trace the letters and we listen to the voice that teaches us how to pronounce the words],” said Japhire Gustame.
“Ayaw na niya bitawan yung tablet kasi na-eenjoy na siya [Japhire does not want to stop using the tablet. He enjoys using it],” his guardian said.
Smart and its other partners also recently lauched the Kaalam Cebuano app. Under development is an app in Ilokano and apps in indigenous languages, such as the Gnare Blaan app which will focus on basic literacy and the culture, values, and beliefs of the Blaan tribe.
“We hope that by combining digital technology with localized content, we can help improve student performance, as well as their understanding of local cultures,” said Smart Public Affairs Senior Manager Stephanie Orlino.