KOTA KINABALU – Preschool (kindergarten) teachers were challenged to enhance their professionalism at a one-day workshop on 9 June 2018 at the Sacred Heart Parish Centre here.
The workshop was organised by the Archdiocesan Early Childhood Education Committee (AECEC).
Eighty-eight teachers attended the workshop facilitated by lecturers Doti Asing, James Molijoh, Jaslinah Makantal, and Jovinia Lajiwin Kudun of the Teachers Training Institute.
This workshop was a follow-up to the recent Mission Kindergarten Board of Governors and Head Teachers Conference at Pace Bene, where the delegates had unanimously concurred that enhancing the quality of mission kindergartens should be given priority.
The facilitators took the teachers through a series of topics ranging from Introduction to Professionalism in the context of a Christian teacher to hands-on activities on lesson planning.
The workshop was designed such that, at the end of the programme, the teachers would be able to:
1) Enhance their understanding of professionalism in teaching;
2) Relate to the Multiple Intelligences Theory with the conceptual framework of “flipped” pre-school classroom;
3) Apply effective teaching and learning in the classroom; and
4) Establish networking among themselves and other Catholic Mission pre-school teachers to enable sharing of experiences and good practices.
Mary Kinajil, who is the AECEC lead for quality and training, opened the workshop. In her opening address, she reminded the teachers of the importance of delivering quality education that is embedded with faith formation values to the children in their classrooms.
She also stressed that it is their responsibility to continuously improve their knowledge and skills in teaching and learning so as to ensure that they meet the National Pre-school Quality Standard (NPQS). She urged them to use the workshop as a vehicle to reflect on their own teaching and facilitating practices, and to share best practices.
Kinajil expressed her grateful thanks to the lecturers who volunteered their time and generously shared their expertise with the mission kindergarten teachers.
While the workshop was in progress, Archbishop John Wong dropped in for a short visit much to the pleasant surprise of the teachers. He told the teachers to remember that their mission in their chosen profession is to nurture future Christian leaders and reminded them that being a kindergarten teacher is a calling and not a career. He thanked them for responding to the call to teach and guide young children.
The workshop closed with the organising chair Ephraim Kouju urging the participants to make use of what they have learnt during the workshop as a step in their efforts to achieve professionalism and excellence in their profession as mission kindergarten teachers. – Ephraim Kouju