Dutch teachers in Uganda

Uganda too has its reforms of the education sector; recently thematic education was introduced. In the coming years this has to become the overarching method for the first three years of primary education. Unfortunately the production of didactic material is not in line with the introduction of the method and currently we only have the required material for the first class. The idea is that …..  (read more)

children will learn much better if the learning content is directly related to the environment of the child. In the course of the first year twelve different themes are presented, four per term. Margrethe and Rixt both teachers from Dronten with an outstanding experience, helped Christine our primary one teacher with the introduction of the first theme: our school. The material comprises a big poster, math cards, word drawings and several booklets. All four main subjects (English, mathematics, social science and science) are presented in an integrated way and are no longer taught as separate classes. It was realy nice that Margrethe and Rixt were able to help Christine through the whole cicle of a theme. It was fascinating to see what those experienced teachers were able to achieve in just three weeks time. It opened a whole new world for our Ugandan teachers and all picked a high interest in this new methodology.

A second assignment was to set up a support system for teachers. Together with Rebeka, the headteacher, Rixt and Margrethe developed a tool to assess classes, to hold appreciation interviews with the teachers and to train them in areas they are weak. In the discussions with the teachers some interesting things came to the lime light. We discovered that the school inspector will check the number of pages the children have filled in their exercise books as a benchmark for the teacher. To a certain extend this is an indication of what has been covered, but in our school all children have a text book so there is no need to write everyting on the blackboard and have it copied by the kids. Everyone was relieved to learn that we use different criteria to measure success. But we also discovered that teachers have to learn how to teach when every child has a book in front of its nose as they are used to write everything on the blackboard for the children to copy.

Rixt and Margrethe return to their respective schools in Dronten on March 12th. Are you a teacher or currently training to become one and are you interested to come and help us for a while, then contact Nicolette: info@stichtingbondeko.nl

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