What a wonderful start to the year! With great pleasure, I would like to announce that at the beginning of our first quarter of 2016, TFFT’s Full Circle Program has accomplished Teacher Training on the Personality Development and Sport (PDS) class at Arusha Modern and Usa River Academy. TFFT scholars attend both of these schools, and therefore, our Full Circle Program decided to expand Teacher Training to include them in order to ensure that all scholars learn important life skills.
The main objective of training is to ensure that PDS is taught effectively in schools. We equip teachers with the knowledge and appropriate skills to teach PDS, and provide the necessary teaching and learning materials. This class is important because it teaches life skills, and incorporates sport activities. Life skills such as decision making, communication, and leadership, to mention few, are powerful skills that aid an individual to endeavors after school.
I was very happy to see the passion and enthusiasm of the Arusha Modern and Usa River teachers at PDS training, especially their desire to improve practices to help students learn material more effectively.
We kicked off the day by explaining the training goals and asking what expectations teachers had for training. Hilda took us through TFFT’s Teacher Manual to assist the PDS teachers in design and development of their lesson plans and helped to customize the activities to the learners. Providing the PDS teaching manual to teachers came about as a result of the baseline survey which was done in different schools in Arusha region with regards to PDS subject.
The baseline survey shows that aside from the curriculum, there are no teaching materials or resources that were prepared and provided to schools by the government after the establishment of PDS subject in 2005. This makes teaching PDS difficult, and explains why overall the class initially failed to meet the intended goals of cultivating life skills to our students.
Demonstrating the toolkits that TFFT provides for PDS was one of the most interesting parts of our training day. All the teachers were excited to see the use of different sporting goods and the teaching materials for the PDS class. Many schools lack the resources to teach PDS, hence TFFT’s role in the preparation and distribution of the toolkit which has all the required materials both for teaching and sport.
Noah took his position to facilitate another part of ‘learning by doing’. The teachers were excited to see experiential learning as a powerful tool of teaching or learning the PDS subject. Teachers understood the art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery and this enabled them to recognize that learning is not just knowing what to do, but doing what we already know.
Training concluded with the establishment of clubs and club managers at the schools. I have observed that most of the clubs established in schools often fail to operate or serve the intended purpose due to lack of management. Teachers came up with ideas to better manage their clubs and to make sure that these clubs foster the life skills learned by the students in school. Aside from the PDS class, life skills clubs provide better platforms for our students to exercise their skills in areas such as leadership.