Partners in Learning Seychelles Forum to be held on May 11


Through the competition teachers should also be able to show how the use of ICT helps students build knowledge, collaborate or learn beyond the classroom

The aim of the forum is to recognise and reward innovative teachers who practice the elements of 21st century learning in their own classrooms, and then incorporate these skills into the student learning environment.

Twenty-one of these teachers come from primary schools, a record compared to the previous years where there were only two or three.  While there are few teachers in the group who took part last year and already have some experience and know what is expected of them, the teachers who are new to the competition said they have been thinking of taking part and decided that this year they would take on the challenge. 

One of the challenges is being able to take the learning experience beyond the classroom walls, and use authentic situation and data from outside the classroom so that the students’ ideas and solution that are implemented have meaningful impact on their local community.  Throughout teachers should also be able to show how the use of ICT helps students build knowledge, collaborate or learn beyond the classroom.

There is also a wider variety of topics from the participants this year, ranging from water pollution, teenage pregnancy and piracy to promoting literacy and working with special needs students.  The majority of the participants have chosen to work on projects where they can get the community involved. 

A group of teachers and their students from Anse Etoile primary school investigating water pollution in their school area said even at the initial stage their project has sparked off some comments and requests from the people in the community, something they had not predicted, but has had some desirable impact on the project.

In history at secondary level, students learn about pirates and its historical significance, but piracy is becoming a burning issue world-wide and students from Beau Vallon secondary school are evaluating the present threat of piracy on the local community to find possible solutions to future impact of the problem.

Learning about different jobs is a topic that is familiar to all students even at primary level.  At Bel Eau primary school students are trying to find out why certain types of jobs are most popular among the residents of Bel Air, and what impact this can have on the community.
This year’s competition is also different as it gives teachers more scope to work with other teachers in their school and participate as a group. 

Each participant or group has to present a learning project that has been used in real life, and comes with national curriculum references and guidance on assessment.  The preliminary judging of all the projects will be done as from May 7 to 9 by a panel of judges which includes teachers, school managers and officers from the Ministry of Education.  The final judging on the day of the forum will allow the participants each twenty minutes with the judges where they can showcase their projects and answer additional questions.

The projects will be judged according to six criteria: the structure and the design of the project and evidence of learning; collaboration; knowledge building and critical thinking; use of ICT; and teacher as an innovator.  Three participants with the most innovative projects will be selected to attend and compete in the regional Middle East and Africa forum which will be held in Morocco in August 2012.  The award presentation ceremony will be held on May 11 where all the participants will receive their awards and certificates which will also conclude the 2012 PiL Seychelles Forum.

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