#Article (Archive)

75 teachers trained on cooperative learning

Feb 28, 2011, 12:26 PM

Seventy-five teachers from five different schools recently took part in a day-long training on cooperative learning at the Paradise Suites Hotel in Kololi.

Funded by one Ms Heidi Newlands from Denmark, the workshop brought together participants from ABC Nursery and Lower Basic School, Ann Marie Javouhey Nursery and Lower Basic School, Mrs Bucket Nursery School, St. Joseph’s Clunny Nursery School and St. Mathew’s Nursery and Lower Basic School.

Heidi Newlands brought with her two colleagues from her school in Denmark: Bente D. Eskildsen and Mette Johansson. All three together have planned and carried out the workshop about Cooperative Learning. Bente donated a brand new laptop and a projector with two loud speakers to Ann Marie Jahouvey Academy in Brusubi.

Cooperative learning is a successful teaching strategy in which small teams and each with students of different levels of ability use a variety of learning activities to improve their understanding of a subject.

Speaking at the ceremony, the sole sponsor of the programme, Ms Heidi Newlands, said she is part of the ABC School and the name of the project is Friends of Ebo Town Denmark.

She added that it was funded in 2002 with two teachers but now they have many teachers and are working together with Ann Marie Javouhey. She underscored the importance of bringing Cooperatice Learning to schools in The Gambia.

She said she organised the training to help the teachers to talk less in teaching school children by using instruments of interaction and being together at physical activities to have fun while learning.

She urged the teachers to make good use of the training and to put all they have learnt into practice. Heidi further commended Muhammed Turay for his help to the Danish teachers in planning the practical arrangements, noting that he (Turay) is the reason why the workshop could take place.

For his part, the coordinator of ABC Nursery and Lower Basic School, Mohammed Turay, said the training has marked "a great day in Danish, Norwegian and Gambian history" as it will make an imprint in the lives of all the participants and facilitators.

"The sole sponsor has been very instrumental in organising workshops for schools teachers in The Gambia," Mr Turay said.

Also speaking at the workshop, Bente dilated about the theory behind Cooperative Learning, while Mette introduced the structures.

After the workshop, the schools were given books about Cooperative Learning and some learning materials.

During the evaluation, the Gambian teachers expressed that this was just what they needed and that they hoped that the workshop could be repeated for the government teachers.