When interviewed in 2013 on the CNN production of “Girl Rising”, director Richard Robbins commented, “… Unlike a lot of big global problems that we face in the world, whether it’s global warming or religious conflict or the AIDS epidemic, we actually know what the solution is to this problem. We know how to educate girls. Most of us know what a good school looks like, a good teacher looks like. So, this is change we can really create in the world.”
For ten years, the world has educated itself to the challenges and impossible odds that girls must overcome to attend school. In 2013, UNESCO reported that there are 31 million girls of primary school age out of school. Of these, 17 million are expected never to enter school. UNESCO states that when all children have access to a quality education rooted in human rights and gender equality, it creates a ripple effect of opportunity that influences generations to come.
Today, organizations work tirelessly to achieve the third millennium United Nations development goal of 2015 to eliminate gender disparity in primary and secondary education. We build wells flowing with fresh water so girls do not have to rise early to fetch water. We prosecute evil to protect girls from being raped as they walk to school.
We are aware of the problems and we are working toward the solution – to make the world an equal and safe place for girls to receive an education. So, when, against all odds, a girl finds her way to school, she must find herself alongside a teacher who can articulate what the students will be able to do. An effective teacher must have a weekly plan with a daily schedule that includes well-written lesson plans. Anything less is unacceptable.
Teaching Training Together is on the wings, prepared to train teachers with sustainable teacher training seminars. In the second of our twelve modules, Planning a School Day, participants learn how to write lesson plan objectives to answer the question: What will the student be able to do at the end of the lesson? The answer to this question requires proper planning, knowledge of outcomes, and a grasp of the level of understanding of each student. TTT condenses a semester’s worth of undergraduate work into a priceless bit of learning that can significantly impact the productivity and value of a teacher and student’s school day.
Parents, teachers, school leaders and even children know what a good teacher looks like. As we fight against the evil in this world that would disqualify a child, girl or boy, from the opportunity to be a learner, TTT commits to teach fundamental theory and practical application of the basics of effective teaching to underserved teachers.
May each of us pause to imagine one young girl courageously walking to school.
Beth is the President of Teaching Training Together, an organization based in Burlington, Massachusetts, that provides professional development seminars to underserved teachers and school leaders in developing nations.