Resources make my lessons more interactive

5 October 2019

To mark UN World Teachers Day, teachers around the world are sharing their stories of success, despite working in challenging environments. Teacher Prema shares her story of personal development in India, as part of the campaign #TeachersTransformLives.

Teaching is one of the most important jobs in the world, but often teachers working where they are most needed have little help, training or support. In many low and middle income countries, like India, teachers can be left isolated and unsupported in remote communities where they are responsible for overcrowded classrooms. Often they have few teaching resources and may struggle to understand the content they teach. Despite this they are expected to improve learning outcomes and lay the foundation for the prosperity of both their communities and countries. It doesn’t have to be like this, with the right training, materials and support all teachers – like Prema – can be empowered to succeed no matter where they live.

Here is Prema’s story

My name is Prema Kattevarapu, I am a teacher at Telaprolu Academy in Andhra Pradesh, India. I have been teaching at this school for four years, and since joining Telaprolu Academy I feel I have the right resources to make my lessons more fun and engaging. It’s not always been that way in other schools. 

I have lots of tools and books  around me that are correct, and up-to-date textbooks for my pupils, as well as teacher books which all link to the lesson very well. 

There are three resources that I use every day. The first is a blackboard, which is very big and can be seen by all pupils in the room. It allows me to clearly write any message for the lessons. The blackboard helps pupils’ learning as I can call upon some pupils to write on the board at any time to demonstrate that they understand what I have taught.

The second resource is my favourite, flashcards, because  they help my pupils to memorise new words and other things. They are small, bright and colourful pieces of hard paper which can sometimes be written on by pupils. The idea is that pupils only write a small amount on each card, so that certain trigger words can help them to memorise an entire topic. Flashcards give them the freedom to be creative in what they write on them.  

I also have a digital lesson guide. This guide is on a little e-reader and has pre-planned lessons for me to teach. It is good l because the lesson guide is made for teachers, by teachers. This means that teachers making the guide understand what topics will help with pupil engagement, and how to teach them. It also means that I no longer need to spend a long time planning my lessons before class, so I can focus more energy on delivering the lesson effectively. This gives me extra time to speak to the children , which I enjoy a lot. 

Plus I have other items all around the school to use, like maths boards with pegs, small boards for children to write on, even paints and little things to make school more creative.   

This is like a whole new world compared to what I was used to. At my old school, we had textbooks to teach from, but that was it. The textbooks were not great and often not up-to-date, making teaching  more difficult. There was never enough textbooks for all pupils to have one. 

The resources I have at Telaprolu Academy have helped my pupils to learn better. They have become more happy to learn, and are thinking with  the lessons a lot quicker. From the first day of the academic year to the last, I can always see a huge improvement in my pupils’ levels of confidence. Pupils undoubtedly learn a lot more here than they did at my previous school.  

Beforehand, I didn’t have very good teaching resources available. The books were often out-of-date and were not helpful. However, the resources that I have now mean  I feel well cared for and lessons are more fun for the children. I can’t wait to see what new resources the school will have in the future. 

 To see more teacher testimonies like Prema’s and to learn more about the #TeachersTransformLives campaign, to mark UN world Teachers Day please visit: http://bit.ly/34ITkwJ 

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