Kosova English Teachers' Network
During December, respectively on the 6th and 20th of December two workshops were held: in the former, the focus of the workshop was on introducing trainees and trainers with useful online resources that they can consult when preparing lessons and activities related to their action research.
For this purpose, the English Language Fellow, Kate Mulvey has been invited as guest speaker. The first part of the workshop took part at the American Corner: participants were able to follow the ELF while she searched on the internet and later they were given tasks to work with a partner to find activities that related to their action research project and presented them to the group. In the second part of the day, the workshop activities moved to the English Department were trainees had to present their developed action research proposals in order to receive feedback from project coordinator and other mentors.
In the latter workshop the focus was on research methods: teachers were introduced to the idea of qualitative and quantitative research, and were given information about do’s and don’ts of research tools. In considering that many regional teachers’ organizations were announcing call for conferences between November to February, Project Coordinator (PC) decided to make a slight change in the agenda in order to meet the needs of the trainees. They were delivered a session on how to write an abstract and were informed about conference application process: in particular they were given information and tips how to apply in regional and some of the most prestigious international conferences.
Saturday, 22nd of November, 2014
As usual, in the first hour each participant presented their action research proposals and received feedback from peers and trainers.
Blerta Mustafa did a presentation on teaching writing skills focusing on the process rather then just the product. Presentation was followed by several practical activities and strategies prepared by Lendita Kryeziu, who focused mostly on teaching paragraph writing, Zinaide Gruda, who shared writing activities for several genres and involved teachers in a discussion about how they could incorporate some of these activities in their classroom. Upon the request of participants, Blerta Mustafa demonstrated a writing activity that included differentiation.
Participants discussed the importance of differentiation and the need to receive more training. In the last part of the session, through a model of poor email writing and group discussion, Blerta Mustafa focused trainees’ attention on how to teach students effective email writing skills and its importance for their future careers. The workshop finished by reflecting on the day and discussing about homework.
Including 8 upper high school English teachers and 5 teacher trainers and mentors, the project aims at strengthening reflective practice in English classes in Kosovo. The focus of the project will be the implementation of a competency-based approach to teaching reading and writing skills based on the New Curriculum Framework.
This project aims at reaching its goal in the spirit of cooperation, exchange of knowledge, skills and experiences between teachers and their mentors.
Teachers have already been assigned their mentors and in the two workshops that have been delivered they were introduced to various activities, which among others covered the following:
Teachers have provided valuable input in all these sessions and the collaboration initiated between them and their mentors is emerging into results, which will be shared with and used by English teachers in the next stages of the project.