The Head of Department of Education of University of Sussex, United Kingdom, Dr Simon James Thompson has led the delegates from the University to build the capacity of the secondary school teachers in a one-day free training/workshop in Abuja.
The workshop which was in collaboration with Portsbrigde Educational Services had Senior Members of National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS) as participants as well as other Head teachers within the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and its environs.
According to the academic, Dr Simon, “the intention of this brief workshop is to introduce the ideas of differentiation. By differentiation I mean how do we adjust our teaching strategies to support the learning of other people so that both the learners and the teachers can feel challenged and work together for improved learning outcomes”’.
“The fundamentals of theory of multiple intelligences in learning process between the teachers and the learners are essential. The theory of Multiple Intelligences helps the teachers to establish unique and balanced engagements with the learners most importantly, within the academic environment”, he affirmed.
Dr Simon who was visiting Nigeria for the first time will be working in collaboration with National University Commission (NUC) on capacity building and effective leadership development of the top 82 selected University lecturers across the country in the coming weeks.
While describing the importance of the workshop, Simon who is also UK National Teaching Fellow, the highest honorary fellows in teaching in the UK stated that having taught in the secondary schools in the UK for many years before moving into University of Sussex he had realised that constant and periodic capacity building for the teachers is paramount toward improving their teaching efficiency in the classroom.
“I understand that some teaching methods and techniques are gradually becoming old and obsolete for this digital age, hence the need for
the teachers to be encouraged to unlearn the old ways and relearn new, modern techniques and more effective teaching methods” said Thompson.
Tosin Adebisi, one of the delegates/Facilitators from the UK, said the workshop for the teachers, was borne out of passion for educational development and mission to help expedite the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals across sub-Saharan Africa.
“Capacity building and continuing professional development are central to our work at Sussex. We hope that this free workshop will be the first of many more training courses to widen participation and we are delighted to welcome around 60 teachers”, said Adebisi.
Dr Stella Adagiri, CEO, Portbridge Educational Services who was the key coordinator for the workshop added that training of this sort would not only broaden the horizons of the teachers, it would also promote effectiveness in teaching as a profession, which is what we need in Nigeria’s education sector at this time”.
Adagiri added that teachers in Nigeria are now being open to learn new things regarding their profession.
Mrs Samira Jibri, President, NAPPS FCT Chapter, was at the workshop to lend support for the participants as well as ensure proper coordination expressed her excitement about the workshop when she stated that NAPPS is taking workshops and training for teachers as its top priority.
“This is digital age and it has become imperative that we are well equipped and up-to-date with the new trends so as to be able to connect with our students for effective teaching and improved learning outcomes” she explained.
Samira added that NAPPS in partnership with ASP in Ireland has just concluded a Coding Workshop for 400 teachers selected from both public and private schools across Nigeria.
One of the teachers from Roberto School, Abuja, Miss Chinelo Okafor said it was a great opportunity for her to learn new things regarding her profession.
“It is a great privilege for me to learn how to handle and teach different students with different needs in an academic environment” she stated.
Another participant, Jennifer Emelife from the Centre for Teaching and Learning, Abuja, said the workshop was quite timely and helpful for her as an educator whose desire is to improve on her teaching skills at all times.
“For me, the lecture as delivered by Dr Simon represents the strategic methods through which teachers can get their students engaged in the classroom, make learning fun and still meet the objectives” said Jennifer.