Supervised by 1500 Trainers to Ensure Teachers Acquire Thorough Knowledge
The Ministry of Education concluded the continuous specialized training program for the teaching staff which started last week in all emirates of the UAE, targeting 25,000 teachers from all disciplines. The five-day program comprised sessions and workshops and took place at the training center in Ajman and at public schools in all UAE cities.
The program was conducted by 1,500 trainers all over the country who were trained to provide scientific, practical and realistic solutions and ensure teachers acquire the necessary knowledge and skills in accordance with international best practices.
The continuous training program was conducted using diverse and comprehensive methods, including professional training courses, exploratory trips and conferences and forums that contributed to enriching the experience of teachers and informing them about the best international educational practices.
Specialized training represents an implementation of the Ministry of Education's educational development strategy which aims at enhancing the skills of the teaching staff and raising professional competencies in line with the UAE Vision 2021 to create an advanced educational system, make the UAE schools an international competitive model and establish modern educational concepts and tools in all educational levels.
The Ministry organizes specialized training courses to develop teachers' competencies through training systems and innovative methods for implementing improved curricula. The program seeks to provide teachers with the ability to develop problem solving skills and to focus on the implementation of teaching strategies that relate to 21st century skills in the classroom and are connected with the cognitive and technical standards of the teacher's license, which is ultimately reflected on the educational output of the UAE school students.
Teachers received training in a variety of fields, focusing on the applied side of knowledge based on specialized scientific content and using innovative and systematic ways that contribute to the continuous development of the diverse skills of teachers through the application of modern teaching methods, the use of technology in the performance of their functions efficiently and the implementation of learning-oriented assessment strategies.
The training materials were designed according to the needs of teachers. The emphasis was placed on specialized scientific material according to the type, level, depth and applied dimensions of content for all grades. The curriculum of the third semester was analyzed to ensure that the most important needs of teachers were taken into consideration. Feedback in relation to the subjects of specialized training was received. The number of training materials was 147.
The training was conducted in equipped training halls selected in cooperation with engineers from the Department of Facilities and Information Technology in the Ministry, in accordance with the different specialties distributed over 197 learning communities, with a total of 1,583 trainers. The professional learning communities in UAE schools is an ambitious initiative launched by the Ministry of Education in order to promote the culture of professional development among teachers in UAE schools and transform that culture into a daily automatic practice by the teacher aimed at improving the outcomes of learning for students.
The Ministry of Education is working on preparing and qualifying trainers to create an active nucleus enriching the training process. The first batch comprised 501 trainers. 198 trainers are currently being qualified in the second batch. Training of the third batch will start soon.
In terms of training material for the Arabic language subject, it focused on teaching rhymes according to personal and integrative patterns in teaching Arabic language skills, modern strategies in the teaching of oral expression and interactive strategies in the implementation of applied activities. The training material was supported by technological applications that enhance students' language skills and knowledge.
Training related to Islamic education focused on the teaching methods of Islamic education, the puzzle strategy and its impact on learning the rules of Islamic purity, the use of supporting maps to illustrate the features of the Holy Mosque, storytelling and its impact in the educational process, and the use of technology in teaching ethics, including honesty.
The training material for social studies focused on the use of geographic information systems in social studies, the professional competencies of the teachers of social studies following the World Government Summit, sustainable development in the social studies curriculum and supporting teaching aids in social studies.
The science training material consisted of interactive activities and integrative education in UAE schools. There was a variety of workshops for the first cycle. The "Matter is Everywhere" workshop focused on identifying the types, forms and physical properties of matter and the strategies of teaching matter and its states to students in the lower grades. The science workshops also focused on using laboratories to raise efficiency and improve the skills of teachers of various sciences in order to support the requirements of the UAE schools.
The mathematics workshops focused on the design of interactive technological activities to build the mathematical concept in the mind of students, enhancing the teacher's ability to create educational situations and experiences, and asking various classroom questions that contribute to the development of critical thinking skills and the way this can be used in the teaching of mathematics.
The music workshops focused on the concepts of folklore and its role in promoting national identity. It also covered the key musical terms used in oriental music literature and the analysis of various melody types. The visual art workshops focused on the concept of graphic design and its basics and explained the methods for abstracting and modulating living forms. A workshop for visual arts teachers was dedicated for doing applied activities for students of determination (special needs).
A variety of workshops were conducted for design, technology, creative and innovative design, and computer science. These included workshops aimed at increasing teachers' knowledge of how to deal with big volumes of information and how to organize them using the latest software. They also focused on introducing teachers to programming concepts, building robots, and developing simple circuits using open source software. The workshops also covered concepts of electronic security and the mechanism of tracking vulnerabilities in the web, which contributes to enriching the teachers' experience and enabling them to protect networks from hacking.
The specialized training activities were also varied. They included exploratory trips in cooperation with the United Arab Emirates University. In one scientific geological expedition to Al-Faya mountain in the Emirate of Sharjah, teachers were shown the most important geological structures resulting from plate movements in the region during the Upper Cretaceous period as well as fossils and sedimentary and igneous rocks in the region. They collected samples of fossils, ophiolite and chromite rocks of and metal ores.
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