U.S. Embassy Islamabad sponsored five teachers’ travel to an education conference in Nepal, where they represented Pakistan and shared their teaching expertise with other teachers from all over the world. The educators gave presentations about teaching critical thinking skills and computer-assisted language learning at the 21st International Conference of the Nepal English Language Teachers’ Association (NELTA) in Kathmandu.
Upon returning to Pakistan, the teachers met with U.S. Embassy Regional English Language Officer Jen MacArthur to discuss preparing similar workshops for their own institutions and communities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab, and Sindh.
“The NELTA conference gave me the chance to share my unique teaching experience with other professionals,” said Qurratulain Najeeb, a lecturer at the National College of Business Administration and Economics in Bahawalpur. “I got to know how they teach English and how I can learn from it and use this in my context here in Pakistan.”
The five conference participants, representing secondary schools and universities across Pakistan, were selected from a group of 15 Pakistani English language teachers who, together with 15 English language educators from India, successfully completed a semester-long online e-Teacher course on teaching critical thinking skills. Since 2009, 150 Pakistani English language teachers have participated in master’s level e-Teacher courses sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Office of English Language Programs.
“This e-course on critical thinking has been a gateway to empower me in rethinking and redesigning my teaching pedagogy and the way I give instructions,” said Saima Abedi, an English teacher for the U.S.-funded English Access Microscholarship Program, implemented by the Evolution educational organization in Karachi. “I can be an ambassador of change.”
More information about the U.S. Department of State’s Office of English Language Programs, including information about online courses and webinars for teachers of English, can be found at AmericanEnglish.state.gov.