A group of master educators from Zambia received training on how to use technology effectively for learning during a recent workshop held at UNESCO in Paris.
The workshop, held between 3 and 6 November, expanded the technical and pedagogical competencies of teacher trainers who will work with secondary school instructors from across Zambia. The ‘train-the-trainer approach’ ensures the workshop has a wide reach and functions to improve the effectiveness of hundreds of classroom teachers.
Participants included 15 teacher trainers who will work with pre- and in-service instructors preparing to teach a new computer studies course which was recently added to the national curriculum. The training reflects UNESCO’s ongoing commitment to help build the capacities of teachers in developing countries and ensure that information and communication technologies are used to improve and enrich learning opportunities.
To help the master trainers prepare instructors for the computer studies course, UNESCO structured the training around hands-on tasks to demonstrate a pedagogy of ‘working-with-technology’ rather than ‘telling-about-technology.’ The participants created websites to share lesson learned at the workshop upon their return to Zambia. They also wrote sample classroom lessons that incorporated technological applications such as databases and spreadsheets. An online group was created on social media to keep the participants and facilitators connected after the training.
The Zambian delegation to Paris was led by Mrs. Celia N.M. Sakala, Director Standards and Curriculum in the Ministry of Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education. The participants comprised Ministry of Education officials, university lecturers and resource centre trainers from each of the 10 provinces in Zambia.
The hands-on nature of the activities won praise from the Zambian participants. Anthony Chomba, a master-trainer from the Muchinga Province said that “even though the participants had different skills and varying strengths, the sessions included everyone and at the end of the day no one felt left out”.