Buddy Box: The educational tool which has helped students across the globe

The creator of a free online learning tool called Buddy Box – which has taught subjects including Maths and English to students across the globe – has said it has been

“amazing” to see it become as “massive as it did”. Armed Forces Veteran and entrepreneur Mark Hill MBE from Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire, first created Buddy Box in

2018 to help teach English to three Syrian children, two boys and a girl and an Iraqi boy in a school in North Yorkshire. “When I spoke to them, as I speak Arabic, they

instantly looked up and smiled and it inspired me to create a classroom resource where they could engage with their peers and their teachers in a fun and educational way”, the

53-year-old told the PA news agency on International Day of Education. At the time, the project was a series of roughly 60 Arabic to English flashcards housed within a

cardboard box, the refugee children were paired/buddied with another student, one which helped them to navigate the school and to have an initial friend. The now cloud-based

resource, which was made using Microsoft PowerPoint makes use of text, pictures and audio and even virtual teachers were created using artificial intelligence to translate

languages including Arabic, Afghan Dari, Pashto and Ukrainian, to English, and vice versa and can be accessed via a downloadable link. The educational resources are also

available in video format. It has helped to educate pupils in other countries around the world including Germany, Poland, Ireland, Afghanistan, Abu Dhabi, and North

America.