The British Council, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), the Department of State Educational Research and Training (DSERT) Karnataka and UNICEF have worked together in partnership on several English language teacher education and development programmes in Karnataka since 2009. These programmes were designed and delivered to increase teacher confidence when using English in the classroom, to introduce learner-centred methodologies and to support the National Curriculum Framework (NCF) 2005 and the implementation of Continuous Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE). All teachers and learners from Standards 1–8 across the state were involved in this project, either directly or indirectly. 

These training programmes were successful in helping participants review and refresh their teaching skills and techniques and develop their proficiency and confidence in using English. Participants were positive and confident about using the new skills in their classrooms. Initiated across the state in 2010, these programmes were implemented in four phases.

Objectives

This project aimed to: 

  • develop teachers' skills and knowledge to use interactive and activity-based teaching methodologies in their own classrooms 
  • gain more confidence in these teachers' own ability to communicate effectively in English, especially in the classroom and training room 
  • develop key trainer training techniques and skills of master trainers so that they can more effectively deliver training to teachers at block level 
  • develop mentoring skills so that master trainers can more effectively support other teachers at school level 
  • improve skills in reflecting on one's own performance and evaluating their own teaching/training sessions 
  • develop strategies to take responsibility for one's own professional development 

The teacher training programme aimed to help the teachers to teach learners the mechanics of writing, sentence and paragraph writing, writing process, and to provide positive and constructive feedback to learners on their writing skills. 

Some of the continuing professional development (CPD) activities encouraged were co-planning, peer support, peer observation, reading tasks and action research projects. 

Key activities

Phase 1

Design and delivery of a 20-day master trainer and teacher training course for teachers of Standards 5–8.  

  • 750 master trainers were selected and trained face-to-face to increase their confidence when using English in the classroom and introduce learner-centred methodologies 
  • These master trainers in turn trained 10,000 teachers in three phases using the training modules prepared by the British Council and reviewed by DSERT. 

Phase 2

Delivery of a five-day ‘English for the English Classroom’ module comprising key sessions from the original 20-day teacher training course of Standards 1–8 teachers. 

  • 240 master trainers from the first cohort were identified and trained face-to-face to conduct this module for a further batch of resource persons identified by the state
  • this module was then delivered to 1.71 lakh teachers of Standards 1 - 8 across the state.

Phase 3

This phase further strengthened the skills and knowledge of the cohort of master trainers across the state with a second five-day programme, ‘Using English in the English Classroom’.

  • delivered face-to-face to 624 master trainers and
  • cascaded to 1.62 lakh teachers of Standards 1–8 in Karnataka.

Phase 4

This phase was delivered in two stages. In stage one, the pool of master trainers was increased from 700 to 1200. In stage two, the British Council provided face-to-face training to these master trainers who have then provided direct in-service training on ‘Writing Skills Development’ to 1,79,393 school teachers impacting on the learning outcomes of students in elementary government schools across the state. 

 

 

Impact

Over the years the programme achieved the following impact: 

For the state: 

  • a cadre of 1200 master trainers was trained and supported to deliver effective teacher training 
  • over 170,000 elementary school teachers of English in received training on delivering learner-centred lessons 

For master trainers: 

  • 90 per cent who took part believed that the project outcomes had been met 
  • 95 per cent stated they had acquired new knowledge and skills 
  • 97 per cent reported that the courses were useful for their development as trainers 

For teachers:

  • 68 per cent felt more confident about using English in the classroom 
  • 78 per cent felt more confident in teaching writing, and  
  • 78 per cent felt more confident in reflecting on their teaching. 

What our stakeholders say

'I never thought there was a structured way to teach handwriting. It doesn’t matter if it is cursive or italics, we can teach handwriting well now!'

'I feel confident about using writing activities in class. I am sure I will have students who can write independently.'

'After this course, I realise that writing for communication has a different focus. I will be able to correct learners differently  with that focus in mind now.' 

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