ATER is a young teacher association with over 40 members since it was granted legal status on December 6, 2011.
Our mission is to “To advance teacher-driven professional development in English language teaching and learning for teachers of English in Rwanda”is achieved through:
Assistance in helping groups of teachers to establish communities of practice where teachers have space to share and learn from each other.
A wide range of workshops, seminars, and talks focusing on ELT and skills development.
Funding support through ELT projects, including research, so that deserving teachers can get involved and develop new skill sets as well as gain more experience.
Links with ELT professionals both in Rwanda and abroad, especially through affiliation to international Teacher Association.
Regular sharing of scholarship information, job opportunities, conference and workshop opportunities, including access to study opportunities abroad for a few deserving teachers.
To date, ATER has been able to inspire more than 200 English teachers in Rwanda that are currently in advanced stages of playing a larger role in their development. ATER hopes to double this number by the end of the year 2016. There is research evidence to suggest that teacher development has moved beyond simple in-service workshops and has expanded into a more robust system of continuing education. In order to improve their English skills, become more effective in their teaching roles, as well as advance their careers, teachers should seek out professional development opportunities which are ongoing and aligned with their needs, student needs, and standards. ATER uses the approach of appreciative enquiry focusing utilizing available resources and local support to engage teachers in the process of owning the continuous education process. Last but not least, ATER is a “meeting point” where members discuss issues of interest, socialize, and expand opportunities not only for members but also English teachers in general.
Some of the areas of continuous education include, but not limited to:
Ways to encourage/Promote use/practice English targeting students, teachers and school leadership.
Strategies/techniques to help teachers and students develop English skills for specific purposes.
Effective ELT methods, especially focusing on teaching pronunciation, skills, and critical thinking.
Starting, developing, and sustaining English teacher networks with a purpose to share and support each other.