The Pearson ELT Teacher Award was launched to celebrate dedicated and innovative teachers around the world. Read on to find out more about the winner for the Africa & Middle East region, Imane Nejjar from Morocco.

Imane believes that good teachers take the needs of the learner into consideration and work with them to overcome any challenges. Sometimes, there are challenges for both learners and teachers, and this was the case for Imane. Large class sizes meant that she needed to find a way of managing them, while also catering to the physical and intellectual needs of individuals.

Imane implemented an innovative two-fold solution. “I have been using Kagan Structures to organise my large classes into lots of smaller groups,” she says. “And I have shown them how to work in a collaborative and fun way.”

Kagan Structures are instructional strategies designed to promote cooperation and communication in the classroom, boost students’ confidence and retain their interest in classroom interaction.

Imane also created an e-classroom that she called “Schoology”. “I have used this platform for further discussion of the topics that are raised in class, and to provide my students with the extra practice of taught lessons,” says Imane. She also supplements her students’ learning by providing extra audio, video and PPT materials.

Imane Nejjar2

Imane’s innovation pays dividends

The benefits of the dual use of Kagan Structures and the e-classroom have been clear to Imane. She says: “The solution has really helped me to reach every single student in my large class and has meant I can create a warm and learner-friendly environment for my students.”

It has also had a positive effect on Imane’s teaching. “It has made teaching a very enjoyable and successful experience for me,” she says.

What the judges thought

The judges of the Pearson ELT Teacher Award were looking for outstanding teachers who are dedicated to making a real difference and striving to help their learners in new ways every day.

By using Kagan Structures as the academic backbone for the online course, the judges felt that Imane had found an innovative and scalable way to deal with a pervasive problem: excessively large class sizes.

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