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Army Public School DHAI II

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Army Public School DHAI II
DHAI Army Public School is a Girls School based in Islamabad, Pakistan. We teach learners aged between 12 and 18 years old. The school has been working with Skills Builder Partnership for two years. We have had a focus on developing transferable skills for many years and have completed classroom presentations, sport events, group projects Seminars for learners, and Council body members guiding and leading the students in different events an maintaining the discipline (leadership).
Overall impact
The Global Accelerator programme has had an impact on our whole school. It has impacted our teachers through the online training sessions that were held. These introduced our teachers to the Universal Framework and the Skills Builder approach. All of our staff engaged with these training sessions. The training from Skills Builder helped us innovate our ways of thinking around skills development and also helped enhance our students’ different skills. Our teachers started focusing more on leadership skills in the students. We also started focusing more on the practical aspect of education, teaching students through different activities and class discussions rather than just theoretical teaching.
Keep it simple
We built the language around the essential skills by focusing on them during student assemblies. Students were introduced to the focus skills of the term through assemblies, building their understanding and also helping our teachers to build their own. We supported this by discussing the skills in depth with teachers during our weekly meetings. All teachers attend these staff meetings and helped us to check understanding and use of the skills in the classroom. We also changed expectations of teachers in building skills by getting them to focus on individual work of students in applying the skills.
Start early, keep going
Students in age groups ranging from 12 to 18 took part in the Skills Builder programme. Teachers are supported to make lesson plans for each class, including all the syllabus and all the activities, discussions, questions etc. We have had a focus as a school to teach skills as part of every syllabus and make sure it is suitable for each age group.
Measure it
Formative assessments are used and students are assessed in groups as well as individually in order to measure the full extent of their skills development. Data is collected by the majority of teachers in the school and shared with the Skills Leader. This helps give teachers ideas on which skills the students are lacking in and what they can do to help improve them. Teachers receive support from the Skills Leader to identify particular areas to focus and teach in relation to the skills.
Focus tightly
Once the formative assessments have been completed, they help teachers understand what skills the students are lacking in and they can come up with different ways to help improve them. The Skills Leader supports the majority of the teachers to use the Skills Builder Handbook and workbooks to plan sessions. From these resources, many teachers have focused and explicit teaching of the skills as well. Training has been provided to support with this. We also use timetables to properly divide the time for learning, so that essential skills have a structured and reliable time to be taught.
Keep practising
By relating the skills to the broader curriculum, the skills are not restricted to one area and can rather be expanded to other areas as well. Most teachers are encouraged to reinforce the skills in their wider teaching with students, thinking about how the skills are developed through their subject and in holistic activities. As a school, we remind teachers to reinforce the language of the skills across the whole school.
Bring it to life
We included more classroom activities, project based learning, and presentations in our existing lesson plans for the whole school, so essential skills have many opportunities to be applied. This year, essential skills have been developed through projects like Model UN, Flood Relief Donation Campaigns and Sports Week. Some of these projects also include the local community, so we can help them to understand the Skills Builder skills too.
What's next
We want to focus more on making sure our students always aim high. Our students are mostly restricted because of the curriculum and time and are unable to think outside the box when it comes to their aims. So that is one thing we hope to change. Other than that, we want to work further on enhancing the creativity of our students, which will also help them think outside the box.