Amidst the rapidly changing landscape of education, where technology is transforming the way we learn, the first cohort of the Teachers Enhancement Program (TEP) deserves a round of applause. This group of educators have not only embraced the winds of change but they have also ridden the wave, making learning an adventure for both teachers and students. Education has changed from long textbook explanations of photosynthesis to 15 second Tik Tok explanation videos of the same concept with a more engaging and interactive angle, thus forcing teachers to adopt new ways to engage students.
We cannot deny the fact that change was inevitable, but in 2020 we saw a rapid escalation —a drastic shift from blackboards to virtual classrooms in our homes. This transformation happened almost overnight, turning both teachers and students into learners of the new norm.
e-Msingi recognises the need for bridging the gap between teachers and students. They do this by incorporating technology and building competency to ensure that teachers are well equipped to navigate this brave new world of education. Competency in teachers might seem so opaque, but it stems from lesson planning, content delivery, teacher-learner relationship, and feedback. This means that learning is evolving from the traditional teacher-centered approach to a learner- centered approach where teachers and students collaborate. The recent TEP graduates can vouch for this shift from the traditional three-step lesson plan to the more contemporary and engaging box model that defies traditional education, which often sought to deliver content in the basic format of introduction, body and conclusion. This model held the teacher as the custodian of information and encouraged rote learning. Now, learning is adopting a practical approach where teachers have to adopt to the box model of lesson planning. This model goes beyond mere content delivery, emphasizing relevance to contemporary contexts.
Recognizing the profound impact of teaching methods on students’ attitudes toward learning, it becomes evident that many students link their favorite subjects to the competence of their educators. This competency extends beyond mere subject knowledge and qualifications; it encompasses the soft skills necessary for effective classroom management. Within the framework of TEP, participants underwent a comprehensive re-introduction to classroom management. This module went beyond the traditional understanding of swiftly silencing a class; it emphasized the teacher’s ability to stimulate students by creating engaging content that can compete with 15 seconds attention span and create an enabling environment for learning to take place.
Learning does not happen in a vacuum; it is influenced by the trends in society. e-Msingi has adopted a modernized approach to education where students are no longer too ‘cool’ for school. Consequently, teachers need to adopt new approaches towards interacting with students and be ‘cool’ for school too. In this case, TEP encourages educators to stay in tune with the latest trends and incorporate real-world issues into their lessons. Through continuous learning, unlearning and relearning, TEP provides a platform for teachers to re-energize, reinvent, and strategize with like-minded educators.
As the first cohort of TEP graduates, these teachers aren’t just receiving certificates, they’re taking with them a newfound confidence and a bag full of innovative teaching strategies. The Teachers Enhancement Program, wrapped in the e-Msingi banner, is not just about professional development; it’s about creating a community of educators who are not only keeping up with the times but are also shaping the future of education. Here’s to the teachers who are not just imparting knowledge but are also inspiring and guiding generations to come.
Article Written by Elizabeth Radina
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