FOCUS ON PARENTING AT ZIPPY’S TEACHER TRAINING
MONDAY, 28 SEPTEMBER 2015: PORT OF SPAIN, TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO – The successful Zippy’s Friends Teacher Training Programme that was launched last year in 20 schools throughout Trinidad and Tobago returned on Saturday, September 26 at the Marriott Hotel with over 40 teachers in attendance to learn more about the new Parenting component of the programme.
Since inception, the programme has made great strides in the participating schools, as remarked by Mrs. Usha Sawh-Narine, one of the teachers from Lendore Hindu. Mrs. Sawh-Narine stated, “Zippy’s Friends is being fully integrated in our school’s curriculum and the Teacher Training is very important, as we also use these lessons outside of Zippy’s Time, seeing remarkable results in our classrooms.”
The newly-added Parenting component is of particular relevance, as “It helps build bridges to reinforce what the teachers do at school with what the parents do at home”, commented Mrs. Sonji Harris who led the session on Saturday.
Mrs. Harris stressed the importance of an alliance between parents and teachers, as “They both have joint expectations for the students’ development.”
Attending the session was the President of the National Primary Schools Principals Association, Mr. Cogland Griffith, who commended the School Leadership Center and the Digicel Foundation for implementing Zippy’s Friends. He said that the programme is fully endorsed by the Association since they are seeing that the benefits will improve schools and student development in the long term. He remarked that the programme is preventative and not corrective, which makes it even more extraordinary.
Last year’s Teacher of the Year award went to Ms. Cheryl James from Arima West Government Primary School, who was rewarded for her hard work and dedication in July. Ms. James was nominated along with 4 other teachers - Mr. Stephen Joseph, Maracas SDA Primary School; Mrs. Tricia David-Francis, Gaines Normal AME School; Mrs. Taramatee Batchoolal, Couva South Government Primary School and Mrs. Safiya Mohammed-Ragoonath, Libertville TML Primary School- who received a token of appreciation from Digicel Foundation’s Project Officer, Cindyann Currency, last Saturday.
Zippy’s Friends is an Emotional Literacy Programme that is specifically designed for children ages 5-8 and is geared towards empowering them to successfully deal with stressful situations that they may encounter on a daily basis, covering topics such as Feelings, Communication, Making and Breaking Relationships, Conflict Resolution, Dealing with Change and Loss and Coping.