Day-long learning festival brings govt, private teachers together

Published November 17, 2022
Singer Shehzad Roy speaks at a session on Wednesday.
—Fahim Siddiqi / White Star
Singer Shehzad Roy speaks at a session on Wednesday. —Fahim Siddiqi / White Star

KARACHI: The Teachers Learning Festival Karachi, co-hosted by the Idara-i-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA) and Durbeen, kicked in at the Government Elementary College of Education, Hussainabad on Wednesday.

The free-for-public event for teachers, which was curated and managed by the Pakistan Learning Festival (PLF), a social movement by ITA, was attended by teachers from the government, private and non-formal sectors, including special needs teachers.

All teachers were looking to enhance their content and pedagogy skills in the curriculum areas of climate change, performing arts and mental health.

The festival was held at a time when the country has been ravaged by floods and is facing a climate change emergency. Thousands of schools and teachers have been affected, with millions of children at risk of dropping out of school and also suffering learning losses. So, the aim of the festival was to introduce best practices with a focus on ‘Actionable Skills/Practices with Social Emotional Learning Skills’ at its centre.

Singer Shehzad Roy says teachers are supposed to inspire children, not make them learn

Around 40 celebrity authors, educators, psychologists, storytellers, theater artists, climate change and science/robotics/coding experts, musicians, and publishers were also present at the festival, who conducted over 23 interactive sessions with teachers on innovative teaching techniques, yoga and art therapy.

Famous singer and social activist Shehzad Roy addressed the participants in the opening plenary by reminding that teaching is a profession that creates all other professions. “We need to change the mindset that teachers are supposed to make students learn. Teachers are supposed to inspire children and they are supposed to learn and align their teaching with 21st century practices.”

The day-long festivity also included several learning strands for the teachers such as ‘Trauma, mental well-being and mental health (psycho/social well-being, life skills and teachers as leaders. yoga, art therapy); role of performing arts in learning (theatre, music/vocal, movement and dance); STEAM education and climate change; technology in education (ECE, primary and secondary); self-directed learning and Importance of storytelling sessions in classrooms’.

Later, teachers, who attended the full-day event were awarded certificates for professional development by the school education and literacy department, ITA and Durbeen.

Published in Dawn, November 17th, 2022

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