Teachers from Qatar schools have been trained on how to support the emotional and social wellbeing of their students
In recent years, there has been an increasing focus within education on emotional and social wellbeing, particularly among vulnerable and marginalized school children.
And this emphasis has been reflected during Doha Learning Days Festival, Qatar’s first experiential learning festival – which is organized by WISE, a Qatar Foundation initiative – through a workshop presented by Qatar Foundation International.
It focused on training teachers from schools across Qatar on how to foster foundational social and emotional skills in their students, through establishing resilience curricula and learning environments that involve students in designing their own learning experience.
The concepts and examples discussed in the workshop were drawn from Canada’s teaching models. Teachers who participated were given insight into ways of applying the same concepts in their schools through interactive activities, in order to equip their students to become critical thinkers, globally-aware citizens, and problem-solvers.
Jennifer Adams, the former director of education in a large school district in Ottawa, Canada, who delivered the workshop to teachers, said: “We look at social, emotional, and resiliency skills, and how we – as school principals, educators, and teachers – can help students develop the skills that will help them be successful throughout life and in their careers.
“What we want is to get teachers to talk about concepts like equity, and how to make sure that all students are learning resiliency. In this workshop, we introduced the concept of wellbeing in a Canadian context, as we have many students there that struggle from mental health issues, and we are trying to be purposeful in helping students gain the skills to overcome these challenges.”
Teachers participating in the workshop were given the opportunity to link the examples from Canadian education to how their schools in Qatar operate, and Clare Gloklin, a teacher at Newton International School West Bay, said: “It’s good to meet teachers from different schools, get different ideas on teaching strategies, and also understand how things work in different countries such as in Canada”.
Arwa Asaad, a primary teacher at Al Bayan Preparatory School, said: “We were introduced to the skills that students need to be taught in classes, and we worked with a group of teachers from different schools to identify our ideas about the skills that we want to teach our students”.
Running until November 19, Doha Learning Days is taking place at Education City’s Ceremonial Court and Green Spine. Over its six days, the festival will be hosting educational and experiential workshops that are free of charge and open to everyone.
For the full Doha Learning Days program, and to register for specific sessions, please visit: www.wise-qatar.org/wise-2019/doha-learning-days/