After sharing their expectations, contributions, and fears, they started to discuss what a Supportive Classroom is like. The teachers shared their opinions based on their experience from the school routine. One of the most interesting topic for them was the relevance of Social Emotional Learning in creating a supportive classroom and the importance of teaching our students about Emotional Intelligence, a concept developed in great details by D. Goleman. We explored the 5 pillars of EI: self-awareness, self-control, self-motivation, social skills and empathy. During the practical exercises, they created awareness maps, worked as “emotional investigators” to feel other person emotions and feelings, and practiced their empathic communication.
Later on, the group moved to the topic of Group Dynamics, another essential detail to look after when strengthening Classroom Management skills. There were discussed supportive classroom settings with the funniest membership and collaborative activities, which were evaluated as helpful and valuable both for school and everyday life. Besides that, exercises about growth mindset was a big part of practical language activities. Then, the group explored several Differentiating Instruction methods: our participants spent the day reflecting how to make their lessons more interesting, cooperation with pupils more productive and how to create a motivating environment for everyone by analyzing 4 elements of teaching: content, product, process and environment.
Then it was time to practice different ICT tools, an essential support to a Flipped Classroom approach. They had the opportunity to test one tool for video lessons, one tool for studying and revising concepts and one final tool to share interesting resources in a more engaging way. One the last day, we delved in Conflict Management conversations, specifically how to approach the conflict and communicate during the conflict. Teachers concluded the part by putting to test their conflict management skills taking part in a role play. To celebrate the ending of our week together, the group made a summarizing collage which presented everything they learnt during this active and effective week of training.