Junior School teacher awarded for literacy initiatives | Aga Khan Academies

Junior School teacher awarded for literacy initiatives

12 December 2022

KG3 Teacher Dulce Messano from the Aga Khan Academy Maputo was recognised as a "Champion Teacher" for the initiatives she implemented in the Early Years classrooms (EYC) to enhance the students' literacy skills. 

The award comes from LiteracyPlanet, an online English literacy learning platform, which honours educators from around the world who have created fun and innovative learning opportunities for their students. The educators are recognised as "Educator Wall of Fame winners" and placed into specific categories that best fit them. According to LiteracyPlant, Dulce was recognised as a "Champion Teacher", which is awarded to educators "...who have motivated students and sought the best ways to deliver fun, engaging and inspirational lessons either in the classroom or online. The teachers are there for their studnets no matter what."

"The initiatives that I, along with my team in the EYC, adopted focus on our approach to learning in the early years which is play-based," Dulce said. "We believe our learners are mostly empowered to inquire through play because this is their natural way to explore their environment. Our literacy activities incorporated a lot of sensory play and fun engaging games to inspire our learners to enhance their phonemic and phonological awareness, while developing their fine-motor skills. In our units of inquiry, we created opportunities for the students to engage in dramatic play, where they could transfer and apply the acquired knowledge in writing and reading. We also taught them goal settings, where students set short and long term goals and they work on them every morning independent and autonomously. To help with this, we made individualised follow-up books to record the progress and learning needs with the participation of each student."

Upon receiving the award, Dulce was grateful for the Academy and the support she's received.

"Being one of the winners makes me very honoured and I owe it to PYP Coordinator Emma Wheatley at the Academy, whom I respect and admire and I consider a mentor for my professional path," Dulce said. "Because of her and the professional development sessions often conducted by her, I learn and share significant knowledge to increasingly raise the quality of teaching at the Academy, encouraging the formation of our future leaders who are responsible, integrated, communicators and who have ownership throughout their learning."