During this quarter, TRC successfully completed three training sessions in different parts of the country. The TRC team conducted a 5-day training of trainers at the Government College for Elementary Teachers at Kot Lakhpat in Lahore. The Early Childhood Education (ECE) training was arranged by the Directorate of Staff Development (DSD) and focused on ECE in light of the National Curriculum. On request from the Baluchistan Education Project (BEP) TRC staff conducted another two training of master trainers. One was an 8-day training on the National ECE Curriculum and the other was a 6-day training on education management and leadership skills.
Back in Karachi, the TRC teamed up with Little Art to organise the 6th Karachi International Children’s Film Festival. TRC has been helping organize this festival since its inception and the event has become an annual event on school calendars. The number of children and school staff attending the KICFF continues to grow each year and this year a record-breaking 8000 school children and teachers attended the festival.
TRC’s ECE team was invited to attend the CACHE (Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education, UK) Conference in Dubai. CACHE is endorsing TRC’s Early Childhood Education and Development Programme (English).
The first semester of the ECEDP also came to a close this quarter. Three courses were taught during this period. This is the 11th cohort of the ECE programme, and the teachers who are enrolled in the ECEDP (English) of the programme will become the first ones to receive the CACHE Certificate.
TRC also revived the ECEDP (Urdu) this year. Not only was the Urdu programme offered again after a 5 year gap, but the 17 teachers enrolled in the programme were also given scholarships that were supported by the corporate sector.
TRC continued with its workshop programme this quarter and 9 multi-school workshops and 2 talk sessions were held between October and December 2016. A school evaluation was also conducted during this time period. Throughout the quarter TRC was invited to attend various school events, seminars and conferences. TRC staff represented the organization at the AKU-EB Principals’ Conference and at the ‘The Liberal Arts Confront Globalization’ lecture. Our staff was invited to judge school competitions, concerts and debates. TRC staff also gave a presentation on the organisation at a consultative policy session on ‘Early Childhood Development in Sindh: Opportunities and Challenges’ organized by ECDN-P.
This has been a busy and promising quarter for TRC with significant progress in our outreach activities and internal organisational development.
TRC is on Facebook! This is where we share ideas, tips and news with our online teaching community. It is a space to learn new ideas, share experiences and stay informed about all the latest happenings at TRC.
TRC Conducts DSD – ECE Training of Trainers
Teachers’ Resource Centre conducted Training of Trainers in Government College for Elementary Teachers, Kot Lakhpat, Lahore. This 5-day training of trainers titled ‘Early Childhood Education in light of National Curriculum’ was prearranged by the Directorate of Staff Development (DSD), Punjab and was conducted from December 5 to 17, 2017. TRC’s Seema Yasmin, Tabinda Jabeen and Noor Fatima facilitated the four groups of 160 master trainers in two phases.
The participants were from all 36 districts across Punjab and included in-service public school teachers, head teachers, senior subject specialists and master trainers of Punjab Education Foundation (PEF). Through the cascade model, these participants will train ECE teachers throughout Punjab.
The objectives of the training were to develop an overall understanding of Early Childhood Education (ECE), sensitize the participants to the ECE philosophy and core values, help them understand the importance of brain development and the process of learning, setting up a conducive learning environment to meet the diverse needs of children and assessing children’s learning and development effectively.
Training for Early Childhood Education in light of NC ECE
TRC’s Seema Yasmin and Tabinda Jabeen conducted the training under the umbrella of Professional Development Programme for Teachers- (Training of Master Trainers) for early years teachers. The training was organised by the Baluchistan Education Project (BEP), Secondary Education Department. This full day training session (9:00am – 4:00pm) on Early Childhood Education in light of National Curriculum was conducted at Balochistan Boys’ Scouts, Quetta from November 21- 28, 2016 (8 days). A total of 40 participants (30 females, 10 males) attended this training. Each participant (master trainer) was given a training manual and a guide for teachers called ‘Mazboot Bunyadein’ (Strong Foundations).
The objectives of the training were to:
• Develop an understanding of the national curriculum for ECE 2007 and the teacher’s guide ‘Strong Foundations’
• Introduce the basic concepts of child development and the learning process
• Set up an effective learning environment
• Develop lesson plans (for ECE, Class 1-2 & multiage)
• Understand the process of observation and assessment in early years and the teacher’s role and responsibilities.
The participants were introduced to the importance of ECE and early years, active learning and play. They took part in hands-on activities and set up a developmentally appropriate learning environment (Learning Corners) to observe and assess children’s learning and development. The participants were introduced to the dominant philosophies and values in Early Childhood Education. Interactive discussions on the underlying principles of quality ECE programmes, ‘Statement of beliefs’ and ‘Objectives of the curriculum’ clarified these key concepts. The participants worked in groups and developed and practiced delivering classroom activities in light of the National Curriculum. Development of classroom activities initiated the process of developing an individual repository of activities needed by all teachers and at all times. In addition to developing and implementing activities, the participants practiced a variety of storytelling and rhyme singing techniques. Furthermore, the participants were given the opportunity to explore the curriculum and create a monthly division of its content according to the winter and summer zones.
Training of Master Trainers (ToMT) – Head Teachers
TRC’s Noshin Khan and Farzana Kausar conducted Training of Master Trainers for Head Teachers under the umbrella of Professional Development Programme for Teachers – (Training of Master Trainers) organised by the Balochistan Education Project (BEP), Secondary Education Department. This full day training (9:00am – 4:00pm) was conducted from November 21- 26, 2016 (6 days) on education management and leadership skills. A total of 16 (15 males and 1 female) participants attended this training. The training aimed to equip the participants (master trainers for head teachers) with attitudes, knowledge and skills required to be effective master trainers who could further train head teachers to become efficient education managers and transformative leaders.
Multi School Workshops
During the quarter, 9 workshops were organised titled ‘Teaching Algebra’, ‘Managing Your Time’, ‘Conflict Resolution’, ‘Understanding the Young Learner’, ‘Learning through Play’, ‘The Art of Public Speaking’, ‘Leading the Ship’, ‘Managing Behaviour Issues in Young Children’ and ‘Integrating Language Skills throughout the Curriculum’ which were attended by a total of 154 participants.
Guest Lecture Sessions
Understanding Needs and Challenges in Early Adolescents
An inter-active Talk session on Understanding Needs and Challenges in Early Adolescents was held on 11 November 2016. The ages 11 through 14 years are often referred to as early adolescence. These years are an exciting time of many varied changes. The young child experiences rapid physical growth and also starts to feel and think in more mature ways. But this can be a confusing time for both children and parents.
The talk session was delivered by Dr. Sajida Hassan, a qualified Clinical Psychologist and Researcher with a Doctorate in Child Psychology from University of Leicester, UK and a Double Masters in Clinical Psychology. She is currently working at Hussaini Foundation and is involved in identification and management of common mental health problems in school children. She has to her credit several publications on mental health of primary school children both globally as well as in Pakistan.
This talk session provided an overview of the developmental changes and highlighted strategies to meet the needs and challenges of early adolescence. It kept the participants involved throughout as they began to explore the concept of the word ‘Adolescent’ and reflect on issues that they faced in managing 10 to 14 year olds. They candidly shared their own perceptions and experiences. Through colourful and informative slides, the stages of brain development and their impact on adolescent behaviour were explained. Relevant quotes helped to add to the value of the facts being shared. Case studies and personal experiences of the speaker were effective in linking theory to practice and it was apparent that the participants were gaining deeper understanding of their role in dealing with the teenagers. The session concluded on useful strategies to face the challenges faced in managing adolescent and was supported by a meaningful video that all enjoyed. References and sources were shared for further reading and research.
The Media and Our Children
An inter-active Talk session on ‘The Media and Our Children’ was held on Saturday 29 October 2016. This is the age of technology and media and it is affecting our children. While the media can impart valuable information to our children, it also exposes them to (and glorifies) violence and unhealthy habits. Research has shown that children who spend too much time using media can develop a variety of issues, including sleep-related problems, difficulties in school, attention problems and eating disorders. Yet every day we see toddlers who are handed iPads that babysit them in cinemas and restaurants young energetic children. Hence recreate the violence that they have been exposed to in a video game or on TV. Therefore it is important for parents and teachers to understand the impact this exposure is having on them.
Ms. Shahrezad Samiuddin works at TRC. She is also a journalist with a special interest in traditional and new media. She has written features pieces in Dawn on various issues, including on the media. For almost a decade, Shahrezad has been writing the Auntie Agni column in Dawn. She writes on a variety of subjects for Aurora, the Express Tribune, The Herald (Dawn group) and The Indian Express. She has also co-authored a book on Pakistan for young readers called, Pakistan: Castle with a Thousand Doors.
The interactive-talk session started well with the speaker putting forward some thought provoking questions to the audience that made them realize the pros and cons of media. Many of them shared their fears and spoke at length about the problems they face. The speaker kept the interest of the participants by giving examples from her personal life. This gave them a chance to reflect on their own lives, and a couple of them came up with their experiences. During her presentation, the speaker gave an insight into issues like ‘cyber bullying’ and ‘online harassment’ supported by relevant slides. Through the report of a survey, ‘ Being 13: Inside the Secret World of Teens’, she helped the audience see the perils that lurk in the lives of the youngsters. The talk concluded with some valuable advice and practical solutions for teachers & parents on how to become media literates, and co-view media with the children. The main message of the talk was that it is better that the adults of the society acknowledge the power of media, and thus, train their children to use media in a most appropriate manner. The participants generally found the talk beneficial.
School Focused Workshop
On 8th and 15th October, TRC conducted a 6-hour school-focused workshop at Creek View Academy on the ‘Role of a School Coordinator’. It was attended by 10 school management staff members representing 7 campuses. The workshop began with the workshop leader sharing the findings of the evaluation programme carried out by TRC in May 2016. The topics covered included planning routines, managing time, organizing staff and parent meetings, planning co-curricular activities, conducting classroom observations and giving effective feedback.
Later in November, TRC conducted a 6-hour workshop on ‘Teaching Methodology’ at Ilm-un-Nisa Institute for teachers of low-income schools located in the area. It was attended by 13 teachers and heads of schools.
On 26 and 27 December 2016, one 6-hour workshop was conducted by Rubina Naqvi on ‘Effective Teaching’ at Campus 1 of Creek View Academy and was attended by 15 teachers. The same workshop was repeated for another batch of 15 teachers at the Qayyumabad Campus on 28 and 29 December 2016. Both sessions were attended by 15 participants each.
The focus of the workshop was professionalism, time management, behaviour management, qualities and skills of an effective teacher, lesson planning, checking students’ work and dealing with parents.
TRC Conducts a School Evaluation at Practical Schooling System
TRC conducted a school evaluation for the Practical Schooling System. The evaluation concluded on 14 October 2016. A report on the findings and recommendations was completed on 31 October 2016.
The first semester of the Early Childhood Education and Development Programme culminated on December 22, 2016. This is the 11th cohort of the ECE programme, and the first one to receive the CACHE Certificate. This year the Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education (CACHE) UK has endorsed TRC’s ECEDP programme. Three courses, Child Development, Play Experiences and Essential Skills were taught during this period. Most assignments were done in class and a flipped approach was adopted, whereby students read the topics prior to attending class and then applied their knowledge in class through interactive activities. It was a very productive semester as all 21 (14 in service and 7 pre-service) teachers attended classes regularly and consistently engaged in discussions. The teachers were energetic and enthusiastic throughout the semester.
This first semester of the Early Childhood Education and Development Programme (Urdu) culminated on December 22, 2016. After a gap of 5 years, a second batch of students has been enrolled into the ECEDP programme which is also being offered in Urdu. There are 17 public sector, in-service teachers currently enrolled in this course who are being supported by the corporate sector through a scholarship programme. Three courses, Child Development, Play Experiences and Learning Environment were taught during this period. To maintain consistency in the Programme a similar teaching approach was used in both the English and Urdu classes. Most assignments were done in class and a flipped approach was adopted, whereby students read the topics prior to attending class and then applied their knowledge in class through interactive activities. It was a very fruitful semester as all 17 teachers were eager to learn and enthusiastically participated in all activities throughout the semester.
TRC hosts Karachi International Children’s Film Festival 2016
Teachers’ Resource Centre in collaboration with The Little Art and Cinepax organised the sixth Karachi International Children’s Film Festival (KICFF). The festival took place concurrently in two venues; Cinepax, Ocean Towers and City Auditorium, F.B. Area from October 17 to 25, 2017. This year the festival was attended by a record breaking number of children and teachers. Over 8000 children and teachers from 57 Karachi schools watched these movies. KICFF 2016 showcased 45 movies from 20 countries across the globe.
‘Stick Man’, ‘A Ride Towards the Sea’, ‘Letter from Home’, ‘The Ghost of Grandpa Tong’, ‘The Little Shoemaker’, ‘Little Magician’, Johnny Express’ and ‘The Law of the Jungle’ were rated as the audience’s favourite films.
Feedback from children and teachers was very encouraging and heartening as they could relate those films with their immediate experiences and real life situations. They felt the messages embedded in the movies were powerful.
TRC attends the CACHE Conference
TRC’s Noshin Khan and Tabinda Jabeen attended the Cache Conference in Dubai on October 26 and 27, 2016. British Orchard Nursery in partnership with CACHE (Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education, UK, under the patronage of the Queen), UK’s leading early years awarding organization hosted a conference. The conference explored a range of topics but stressed on the value of play in promoting healthy child development and maintaining strong parent-child bonds. The programme included seminars and interactive sessions. The CACHE leveled certification courses were also explained in detail. The ECE team attended the conference because TRC is offering the CACHE-endorsed ECED Programme.
TRC at the AKU-EB Principals’ Conference
Rubina Naqvi represented TRC at the Principals’ Conference organized by Aga Khan Examination Board on 19 October 2016 at a local hotel. The conference on ‘Engaged Teaching and Learning’ aimed at providing structured learning opportunities to Pakistan’s educational leadership and also to gain insights into school improvement from an indigenous and global perspective. Methods to improve school leadership to promote better teaching and learning across the country were discussed.
The conference was attended by approximately 400 educationists including school and college heads, teachers, teacher trainers and government representatives. A panel discussions on ‘Re-Imagining the Text Book and Ownership and Engagement’ were conducted. Success stories about achievements of low-income schools were also shared.
Interschool Choral Elocution Competition at Education Bay
TRC’s Rubina Naqvi was invited as one of judges at an Interschool Choral Elocution Competition held at Education Bay on 25 October, 2016. Students from classes IX and X from 8 leading schools participated in the event. The extracts and poems were recited by the participants with great fervor and expression and were meaningful and well known. Prizes were awarded to the first, second and third position holders and certificates of participation were given to all the participants.
Concert on “Diversity – Embracing Who We Are” by AMI School
TRC was represented by Rubina Naqvi at the ‘Diversity – Embracing Who We Are concert organised by the primary students of AMI School on 5 November, 2016 at PACC Auditorium. The concert was part of the project on Inclusive Education being carried out at the school, supported by the British Council. The Chief Guest was Chris Hunt, Area Director, Sindh and Balochistan, British Council.
The students’ performances highlighted the importance and need for accepting diversity. The audience was moved to see handicapped children participate in the songs enacted by the students. The colourful costumes, the background narration and the message of the performances gave a meaningful flavour to the event.
TRC attends lecture at AKU on ‘The Liberal Arts Confront Globalization’
TRC’s Rubina Naqvi attended a lecture organised by Aga Khan University on ‘The Liberal Arts Confront Globalization’ on 8 November 2016. The speaker was Dr. Lisa Anderson, Former President, American University in Cairo. It was well attended by the AKU Board members, heads of schools and students of the university.
The speaker highlighted the need for a liberal arts education to promote life skills among the youth equipping them to face present and future challenges.
Debate Contest at Beaconhouse School, Jubilee Campus
TRC’s Rubina Naqvi was invited as one of the judges in an inter-group debate for middle school students at the Beaconhouse School, Jubilee Campus, on 23 November 2016.
Teams from the different BSS branches competed through two rounds. The topics for each round were different. Prizes were awarded to the best speaker from each round and the trophy went to the winning team.
Certificate Awarding Ceremony at Ilm-un-Nisa Institute
TRC’s Rubina Naqvi attended a Certificate Awarding Ceremony at Ilm-un-Nisa Institute on 14 December 2016. She shared details of TRC’s services and also highlights of the Teaching Methodology workshop with the teachers from low-income schools located around the Gizri area. The donors of this vocational institute were urged to support TRC through fundraising and also through soliciting its services.
The candidates that had successfully completed the Sewing course, the Beautician’s course and the Computer course were awarded certificates.
The National Consultative Session for Curriculum and Textbook Board
The National Consultative Session for Curriculum and Textbook Board was organized by TRC from 26 to 30 December 2016. This session was attended by representative of PITE, BoC, Textbook Board of Sindh, Baluchistan, Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK), Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) and National Curriculum Council-Islamabad.
The objectives of the four-day session were to conduct a review exercise on the provincial efforts on curriculum and textbooks, review curriculums and textbooks for critical thinking and develop action plans at provincial level having focus on gaps identification in curriculum and textbooks for critical thinking, development of strategies for embedding critical thinking in curriculum through SLOs. The outcomes of the session was the sharing of progress on curriculum and textbook development of all provinces, review curriculum for the integration of higher order thinking, and development of provincial action plans for the integration of higher order thinking in curriculum and textbooks.
The session was highly valued by the provincial representation as the important feature of the session was the exchange of knowledge regarding the progress on curriculum and textbooks development of all provinces and region.
Consultative Policy Session on ‘Early Childhood Development in Sindh: Opportunities and Challenges’
TRC’s Rubina Naqvi and Seema Yasmin gave a presentation on TRC at a consultative policy session on ‘Early Childhood Development in Sindh: Opportunities and Challenges’ organized by ECDN-P in collaboration with Rupani Foundation on Thursday, 1 December 29, 2016 at Movenpick Hotel, Karachi. Representatives from SZABIST, IOBM, Rupani Foundation and NDIE also presented at the event. Other organisations such as Karachi University, British Council and BRAC also informally shared their work in the field of ECD.