Methodical Seminar for Teachers in Kenya

In August 2009, the first seminar on modern educational methods based on humanistic approach towards children and life took place in Kenya. It was attended by circa 70 teachers from local elementary schools, coordinated by Daniela Cachová, and conducted by Hana Dvořáková, Simona Panýrková and Kateřina Svobodová. The first week of the seminar took place in the community centre Island of Hope on Rusinga Island, the second week it moved to the boarding school in Nyeri close to Nairobi. The objective was to provide the teachers with methodical "know-how" and also to encourage them to cooperate and share their knowledge at schools and with each other. Thanks to this first seminar, we were also able to discover some problems and shortcomings and thus help improve the materials for next time.

The second methodical seminar took place in August 2011. It was conducted by Daniela Cachová and Hana Dvořáková and it was divided into two week-long blocks. Within the seminar, the Kenyan teachers were also introduced to the new project Education towards non-violence. The seminar took place in the community centre Island of Hope on Rusinga Island and it was attended by 61 teachers from all over Kenya. It was aimed at educational methods, effective communication skills, and non-violent approach. The objective was to introduce the Kenyan teachers to a wide variety of universally usable educational methods and activities. With the use of a prepared manual, the attendants could also try some of them in practice and they were also given the opportunity to share their own experience and knowledge. At the end of the seminar, the teachers created an active group, whose goal became to spread (with our distant support) the newly obtained skills. Another 3 methodical seminars had taken place by the end of 2011.

Another seminar was organised by Dana Feminová in October 2013. It took place in the community centre Island of Hope on Rusinga Island, it lasted 2 days, and it was attended by 16 teachers and educators. This time, the objective was to deepen the already obtained knowledge of the topics from the previous seminars which the teachers subsequently tried to put to their everyday practice- the non-violent approach to children, non-violent communication, experiential educational methods, and positive motivation of pupils. One of the goals of the seminars was also to clarify which skills, knowledge, personality traits, and values are to be expected of the children who complete the school.

Currently, another methodical seminar for teachers, planned for the end of 2015, is being prepared.

Objectives of the workshop:

  • to help teachers learn new progressive teaching methods
  • to motivate teachers to change their attitude to children so that they could make individual, independently thinking human beings out of them with own opinions and ways of expression and non-violent attitude to life
  • to encourage teachers in looking for materials and inspiration
  • to ask teachers to be co-operative – not only during the workshop but especially later in the teaching process
  • to be in permanent contact with the teachers, to support them in case of need, but at the same time to make clear that it’s their task to participate the most
  • to ask those teachers participating in the workshops lead by Czech lectors to spread gained knowledge to all interested teachers and by that to create a wide net of new way of education
  • to avoid teachers from using chastising and mental punishments, to show them other ways to solute problems and lack of discipline
  • to stay in touch for the whole time (not just during the workshop), to prepare one deepening workshop each year until the Kenyan teachers are able to continue by themselves
  • to include the necessity of social change and non-violence into educational process

Form of the workshop:

  • active learning of new teaching methods
  • own discovering (not just through explaining) of studied methods
  • above all practical and creative attitude during the workshop
  • making of a methodical manual
  • active co-operation with other participants
  • immediate use in practise
  • humane attitude motivating teachers to act the same way in their jobs and their lives

Main themes of the workshop (in alphabetic order, not according to real schedule):

  • behaviour, lack of discipline, solutions of problems, punishments and critique
  • „brainstorming“
  • demonstration (exhibit)
  • dialogue method
  • discussion groups
  • exercising, drill
  • experience method
  • games
  • group/pair work, co-operation
  • memorizing, memory training, brush-up
  • motivation
  • needs of the pupils (EDUCARE)
  • praise and critique
  • project method
  • relation teacher-pupil
  • simulation, roles
  • testing, compositions, theses, marking, evaluation
  • teaching/learning „for life“ – not just abstractly
  • usage and making of manuals, learning materials, tools
  • ways of learning (learning and memory, active process, use of senses)

Daniela Cachová
co-ordinator of the project
tel. 724 785 876

» Photos: Methodology seminars for teachers