Complex Made Simple

ADEC holds three day leadership program

As part of the Reyada comprehensive professional development program, the Abu Dhabi Education Council (ADEC) held a three day leadership program for 120 champions from across 30 schools in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, who all took part in hands on activities.

The nominated champions attended workshops on Special Educational Needs (SEN), Active Learning in Kindergarten and Early Years, Using IT to enhance learning and teaching, and English as a Second Language in Mainstream (ESLM) subjects.

Various SEN teachers and SENCOs (class teachers with an interest in SEN), attended the Special Educational Needs module which helped introduce a variety of diagnostic tools such as diagnosis and assessment of reading, writing and math’s skills; running records; introduction to observation checklists and perceptual rating scales and student surveys that can be used as proof of growth.

The participants were also introduced to skills or interventions that promote the ability to cross reference reading levels, properly use manipulative, be aware of the latest and most useful adaptive and assistive technology (low tech and high tech); accommodate students with physical disabilities, perceptual disorders and behavioral issues, interview parents in a safe non-threatening manner, and write a comprehensive report of student progress and achievement.

The SEN group visited the Higher Colleges of Technology’s Assistive Technology Department on the third day to look at technology that that could be used in schools to help special needs students. Participants in the Active Learning in Kindergarten and Early Years course gained an in-depth knowledge of best practice in a Kindergarten/Early Years classroom, as well as obtained detailed knowledge and understanding in the use of an effective planning cycle, working with template exemplars including all the elements of successful classroom practice.

Each of the elements of lesson planning was observed in a comprehensive manner ensuring that participants were able to implement and cascade to colleagues, quality practice in writing objectives and using differentiation. Assessment for Learning techniques and continuous and extended resource provision, including ICT in a KG and Early Years classroom; specifically, the use of Learning Centers, which were the main focus for the three day training. Using ICT to enhance Learning and Teaching was not a course for beginners, thus it attracted ICT teachers or school champions with an innovative and exciting approach to using ICT.

Participants in this course examined various issues which surround the use of ICT within classrooms and schools, as well as looking at specific resources available, including emerging technologies. Significantly participants left with skills and experience of a range of strategies which will allow them to lead and support ICT integration within their own school. The English as a Second Language in Mainstream helped provide reading strategies for teachers to support students whose first language is not English. The sessions over the three days were suitable for teachers of any subject, from Kindergarten to Secondary, facing difficulties in delivering their subject because they have students whose first language is not English.

During the three day workshops attendees learnt and practiced activities and strategies that help improve teacher input and support student output while delivering lesson content. Teachers left the training with a collection of different learning tools and resources, useful ideas for using internet sites and practiced useful lessons to teach next term.

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