Last month Melanie Jones and Giulietta Pezzaniti traveled to Ghana, Zimbabwe, and Kenya, to facilitate teacher trainings at ICRI offices. They successfully trained more than 120 teachers on ending violence against children in the classroom and on helping children flourish while learning. They worked towards the mission of Speak to Children, a non-profit organization founded by Melanie, which is to provide children with a foundation that supports academic success.
In Ghana, Zimbabwe, and Kenya, Melanie and Giulietta helped teachers open up and connect with themselves and others; knowledge which they could use to better interact with and eventually pass on to their students. Teachers were given a different lens on how to discipline children and alternative ways to discipline children without the use of violence. Teachers learned how they would personally and professionally benefit from these trainings, increasing their enthusiasm and commitment to the programs. The larger vision and goal of these trainings was to trade the discipline of the stick for non-violent discipline methods, and to eliminate inappropriate and/or violent discipline, and more in general, to improve the quality of early childhood education that these teachers will be providing to their students.
Melanie said that some of the highlights of their trip included watching teachers slowly open up and become excited about the program, and seeing them realize how they were going to be able to implement the program in their own lives and in their classrooms. They also enjoyed training the teachers and then watching the teachers go into their own classrooms to teach it to their students. Watching teachers from all around Africa become excited about her program was something that Melanie said she used to only be able to dream about, but through the help of ICRI and with Melanie's excellent Speak To Children program we've been able to bring her message to countries throughout Africa.
If you want to read more in depth about Melanie and Giulietta’s trip, check out their blog, at outrageousgoodness.blogspot.com.