On 1st of November, honoured guests (including representatives from the University of Botswana, the Botswana Training Authority and Tlokweng Teachers Training College), excited students, their friends and family and members of the Flying Mission family gathered at Open Baptist Church – Blue Tree in Gaborone to celebrate the achievements of the Flying Mission Care Ministries Early Childhood Development (ECD) teacher training graduating class of 2013.
This training programme, which provides Early Childhood Development (ECD) training (Certificate – Level 3) to pre-school teachers in Botswana using the ‘Little Seeds‘ curriculum, was registered and accredited in February 2011 by BOTA (Botswana Training Authority). Its clients include pre-school teachers from non-profit day care centres (most serving a high proportion of orphans and vulnerable children) and commercial day care centres (which helps to keep costs down for the non-profit day care centres). This important training equips and empowers the students to be more effective in their pre-school roles, to mentor and model good practice to colleagues, and to build better developmental foundations in the children they serve (physical, cognitive and spiritual).
The ECD training program enrols between 10-20 trainees for a period of 18 months. There are two programmes, one during the school holidays (2 week workshop sessions each school holiday) and another in the afternoons (3 days per week). 16 students were graduated at this event and will now either continue onto further study in the area of childcare, or be returning to their day care settings to put into practice what they have been learning.
One of the graduates, a pre-school owner, said of the programme; “Who would have thought that with a Bachelor of Science Degree and a Diploma in Education I would need a course like this one? When I started running my pre-school in Mogoditshane I realised that I could not handle the ‘little ones’ without this kind of training. I am thankful that it has equipped me and it has given me all the skills I need. I now know how children learn, I know how to work with them and I know how to tell them stories. I know so much.”
The programme was praised by the honoured guests for the high quality training it provides; several expressed that the level of training offered in the ECD programme is above that of Certificate level.
As one speaker reminded us, all Christians and teachers should be in the business of building lives and also the nation; and it is clear that through its ECD training programme, Flying Mission Care Ministries is doing just that.
For more information visit the ECD Face Book page: https://www.facebook.com/flyingmissionECD