What is the Time in MyanmarTime in Myanmar?
It was a very, very particular time in Myanmar's story.
Aware that English is the global isation of globalization, more Europeans are beginning to dominate it, and the British Council is central to this. This may come as a shock to some, but the British Council has been in Myanmar for exactly 70 years and, if anything, is now more than everolved.
It is a journey of formation and more formation to introduce the Myanmar population to the English language area. The focus is on special programmes in line with the aspirations of the National League for Démocracy which has made training a public aspiration goal for advancement and democratisation.
British Council works with undergraduates, faculty, research scientists, senior management and political decision-makers. Part of its missions are a kernel training group, librarians and an examination board. More than 170 employees work directly for or assist this educational company. The Yangon Teaching Centre, where currently 2350 seven to seventy year old pupils are registered, is a starting point.
This center allows the parent to bring their kids to complete their study of Anglophone at home and to improve their communication abilities, especially speaking Anglophone. This method makes sure that the kids have fun studying and build self-confidence through child-friendly extracurriculars such as storytelling, song, games and common expression. It offers classes for elementary and middle schools as well as young people ( (16-18 years) at all grades (beginners to advanced).
Classes are designed to meet the needs and interests of the child and improve the child's grammatical and linguistic knowledge through "active" study. Grown-ups also take the centre's teaching programs to improve their communication abilities inese. Teachers' general recognition of the capability to work in England is a core qualification. Covering the same performance area ( "beginner to advanced"), our classes encourage the use of modern text and collaboration to improve oral and writing comprehension.
Commenting on her expectation of the English language skills of the Myanmar population in a few years, Ginny said: "It would be very hard to set a timecale. It takes a great deal of work to give many Myanmar municipalities the opportunity to attend schools. It would take a long time, I think.
"However, from my experiences of working and educating in Malaysia, Thailand and Myanmar, Myanmar students are one jump ahead of the other two. And I think the students here have a very powerful listening for speech. For those who have the opportunity, the time and the investments in self-improvement, we can be very upbeat.
Though I don't give lessons myself anymore, my instructors tell me that all Myanmar schoolchildren are really smart, unbelievably passionate, work very harshly, do their assignments and visit every hour, although it is an additional challange for their working or studying lives. British Council Director of Education, Myat Lay Tint, said the English-speaking staff is receiving enquiries to provide trainings for policy-makers so that they can better understand each other at an global scale.
A further access to the British Council is its welcome to all. There is another starting point if you are an English instructor. Our work in'English for Education Systems' enables us to provide further education for educators and hold seminars - some in our Learning Center and others outside. They have a number of classes to help educators broaden their repertory of instruction.
It is the goal of these technologies and methodologies to get the student to communicate fluently in English at different grades and to give them the necessary self-confidence. Said that these classes are for English language instructors in the Yangon and Mandalay region and that they have been taking place for four or five years now.
At the end the teacher receives a degree from Cambridge University, which is recognized by many independent colleges. A number of professors come from state colleges, others from the business world. "We made a very intense start in teaching English as a Foreign Language[TEFL] last year, which is a Cambridge qualification," said Ginny.
Bi-annually, the British Council holds a two-day conference of British lecturers in Yangon in September and Mandalay in January, attracting top level lecturers and moderators who agree with their views on class. Each year, more than 800 Myanmar's senior and junior Myanmar educators fill the workshop, which presents cutting-edge educational and discussion topics such as learner motivation, development of communication literacy, assessment of learner advancement in the British langua -ge and development of dissent.
"We' re bringing in some awesome English-speaking lecturers from around the world to help us pass on their knowledge to the class. In Myanmar we like to work - we don't ship many of our instructors abroad. This will enable us to educate more instructors more effectively and in a more sustainable way," said Lynne.
The Joint Educa-tion Conferen- tion, the largest meeting for professors and instructors from the informal and informal educational sector in the whole state, is another important initiative co-sponsored by the British Council and a number of educational organizations in partnerships with the state. It took place every year in November at Yankin Educational College in Yangon under the motto "Relating Learn toReality.
Another EfECT programme, co-financed by DFID and the British Council, has worked in collaboration with the British Voluntary Service Overseas, an organization of native-speaking volunteer and high quality schoolteachers.
It aims to enhance what the British Council refers to as "Core Skills", sometimes also called Deep Coaching Qualifications or 21 Century Aptitudes. Building these capabilities will help youngsters to become imaginative individuals who are able to think creatively, make efficient choices and resolve real-world issues. It focuses on six key competencies: discerning thought and solution, digitally literate competence, students' management and career advancement, creativeness and fantasy, cooperation and communications, and civic responsibility.
"It is another programme co-financed by DFID and the British Council. It is a comprehensive programme that will educate 45,000 instructors in almost 40 nationalities. We are pleased that Myanmar's educators and school community will be able to participate in this programme for the first time this year," said Lynne.
"Our expertise in the field of global learning has been used to make sure that the programme fits the culture and pedagogical contexts of the countries and that the teacher can help their pupils to build these abilities as an integrated part of their class work. "Over the next few month, in collaboration with the Ministry of Educa-tion, we will extend the 21 Century Skilled to five states and territories and involve one hundred state, ethnical and monumental schooling.
"The first skill is to think critically and solve problems. The Connecting Classrooms help educators understanding what it is to think critically and how it can be learned in actual teaching settings in Myanmar. We offer a workshop to help the teacher build the necessary abilities to do this efficiently. As digital technology changes the face of the earth, it's good to know what's out there when it comes to learning.
Pupils use the web and educators need to know how to use these tools to improve student literacy. However, the web is not only a repository of information, it is also dangerous - pupils also need instructions from their teacher and parent on how to use the web in a safe and effective way.
That is what e-skills are about. British Council higher educational twinning is another starting point. Lynne describes this collaboration as follows: "We have established collaborative relationships between UK and Myanmar higher educational institutions where scientists, student and academic directors can work together in research and learning. There are already some powerful alliances and we are educating Myanmar scientists to take advantage of the increasing possibilities for collaboration on the global scene.
It is really important for the development of a powerful higher educational system for the coming years and is a high level of importance for us.