Teachers Training Workshops

The teacher training workshops are an integral part of the identification process in rural and urban areas. In the past three years, NIAS-EGT Team has conducted over 30 teacher-training workshops for rural and urban teachers. The training sessions try to question the already existing conceptions of giftedness, where giftedness is often understood as a “good” behaved/achieving boy or a girl. This myth had to be removed through live examples. The session then walks the teacher through the 21 traits by their active participation. The teachers fill one nomination form in the session through consultation with peers and the teacher trainer.

Becoming a Teacher Trainer

The NIAS Gifted Education project is looking forward to involve teachers in teacher training. After attending a teacher training workshop, some participants express an interest in becoming teacher trainers themselves. We believe external trainers will strengthen our training team, expedite the process of introducing teachers to the concept of giftedness and the need for gifted education, and broaden the scope of identifying potentially gifted children. As a teacher, you are in an excellent position to communicate to your peers the crucial role teachers need to play in this national endeavour.

We have developed a module that external trainers can use in conducting workshops. The module contains all necessary material including the schedule of activities, presentation slides and scripts, written material, and guidelines for moderating group-discussion and plenary sessions. It was developed over the course of four workshops across South India and refined with the inputs of participants and the project review committee as well as our own evaluations. The module is currently being translated into regional languages, beginning with Kannada.

We are now looking to get external trainers involved in conducting teacher training workshops across the country. Our team is small and focussed on research; our ability to directly reach teachers across the country is limited. Our training module, which is a work in progress, reflects these limitations. A majority of participants in our workshops to date were from private schools, where the student body was from middle-class or elite backgrounds. It is, however, in government schools, rural schools, and other schools catering to less-advantaged child populations that we most urgently need to train teachers to identify and nurture gifted children.

This is where external trainers come into the picture. As a teacher, you have firsthand experience of the problems that arise when the needs of gifted children are not met. You are aware of the need for a gifted identification and education programme, and you have also experienced the constraints of the school system in implementing such a programme. You are well-placed to address these issues in a participative forum of your peers. Fluency in regional languages is an added advantage: participants benefit from a bilingual format where language barriers are removed.

Without a doubt, your experience in conducting workshops will provide us with valuable feedback on our module. Getting these inputs is important to us in our ongoing efforts to improve the teacher training module and standardise it for use by teachers from all types of school across the country.

What kind of commitment does becoming a teacher trainer involve?

Our team will perform all preliminary arrangements including setting updates, screening participants and contacting the local organiser to ensure all facilities are in place. All costs for the workshop including travel to and from the venue and local costs will be covered by NIAS or the local organiser. Our teacher workshops are usually conducted full-day on Fridays and Saturdays. As the trainer, you will need to arrive in the given city by Thursday morning, contact the organiser, and ensure that everything is in order. We will work with you before, during, and after each workshop to ensure smooth planning and to review your work.

How do you go about becoming a teacher trainer?

The first step is to attend one of our teacher training workshops. Check the Calendar for upcoming workshops in your area. You can register your interest in becoming a teacher trainer here or by speaking to our team after a workshop. We will then organise a workshop for teacher trainers – please check the Calendar for dates.

Role of a teacher in the education of a gifted child

Teachers are the building blocks of the NIAS-EGT. The teachers play a critical role in the first stage of identifying the potentially gifted children. The teacher plays a supportive role in providing socio-emotional support to the children who are gifted. Many of these children are unable to connect with thier own peer group and feel aliented. The teachers can provide resources to these children and connect them to potential mentors within thier sorroundings. Connecting these children to the programmes for the gifted and children is an important step in leading this child to reach his/her potential. More importantly, the teacher needs to refran from drawing judgement and labelling these children as trouble makers.