18 February 2013

Liberia: 200 New Teachers Trained

About 200 public school teachers in Montserrado County's 17 districts have acquired basic teaching skills and promised to practice what they have learned.

Some of the teaching skills were classroom management, students' motivational techniques, lesson presentation, teachers and students' communication practices.

The two-day interactive training spanning 14-15 February, was organized by the Ministry of Education's Center for Curriculum Development and Research, focusing on mathematics, language arts and science. Participants also acquired different classroom teaching methodologies and techniques.

Amongst other things, teachers were taught how to make use of body language or body communication in the classroom, as well as making effective use of various joints on the human body to illustrate a vertical angle, or a triangle, the use of papers representing various shapes such as quadrilateral, rectangle and square amongst others, thus illustrating how students can learn quickly through demonstrable teaching aide that can be locally accessible.

After a series of classroom assessments which identified major gaps between lesson presentations and students' acquisition of knowledge, Ms. Kaba said, the MOE decided to conduct the workshop to improve the performance of teachers

as well as ensure that students grasp their lessons rapidly.

"Teaching nowadays is not only defined to presenting lesson plan alone. Rather, it also includes the students getting the best from their instructors. Sometimes ago we observed that most students in were not really grasping their lessons. And, one cue we took from this assessment is that teachers are teaching but the students are not learning.

We want to improve this situation," Ms. Kaba said.

Also speaking to New Democrat, some of the teachers thanked the MOE and the Government for the training and skills acquired, especially in classroom management and student motivational systems. Mrs. Julia K. Sandiman Sesay, an instructor of Biology at the William V.S. Tubman High School said, "I am happy about this workshop. I want to thank the Ministry of Education for this work. I think the skills acquired today will in a long way help the teachers to perform well in the classroom."

Mr. Emanuel K. Owusu, facilitator and principal of the St. Joseph High School in LAC, Grand Bassa County, noted , "I think the teachers have a lot in them. I have observed that most of them have very good classroom ideas. But, I would like to see them improve. They need to be dynamic in order to learn more so that they can be real agents of change."

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