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On 25 September 2014, 400 teachers from American International School Egypt’s (AISE) Main Campus and West Campus, as well as their colleagues from the Cairo English School (CES), came together for an exciting day of learning together at our Cairo Area Professional Development Conference.
The Esol Education Cairo schools started off their day hearing from our keynote speaker, Dr. Gayle Frame. Dr. Frame has 16 years of hands-on classroom experience, teaching elementary and middle school as well as remedial reading. She also was a building-level administrator for four years and spent 13 years as an assistant superintendent in a large, suburban district applying MAP assessments to guide instruction and goal setting. The conference theme was "Assessment for Learning" and Dr. Frame worked our teachers into a learning frenzy!
Next, the teachers enjoyed an hour-long "Job-Alike" session, sharing best practices with their colleagues. They all later commented how they really enjoyed the exchange of ideas, meeting colleagues at their own grade levels, and that they were “fascinated [to learn] how different our curriculums are between the campuses.”
Finally, teachers enjoyed choosing from 22 workshops covering a diverse range of topics from different grade levels and subjects. The workshop on the Reggio Emilia approach and technology training proved winners, as did the ones on Islamic culture, critical thinking and building the “perfect classroom.”
Many teachers commented they wished they had more time so they could pick additional workshops to attend. Max Schmeling, a teacher at AISE-Main wrote in to say, “I had a good time [at the conference] and it was very helpful to my job here… I thought the day was successful because of the variety of choices. Grade-level meetings are always beneficial, [and] I found that I had to make a decision between two or three sessions that I would have liked to attend. Nice work!”
Our Esol Education schools in Cairo have lived our mission to be lifelong learners and we wish them the best as they continue to have a super school year full of learning opportunities for both their students and teachers. Teachers learning from each other and sharing best practices is a powerful way to increase student achievement. We are all looking forward to the Esol Education Professional Development Conference in 2015, where all our schools will participate in shared learning experiences.