Winning a science competition sounds very challenging for an English teacher. Lutfunnisa Khanom, English teacher of Jamal Khan Kusum Kumari City Corporation Girls’ High School, Chittagong overcame all challenges and won the Commonwealth Science competition. She visited Singapore to receive the prize on June 2017 and expressed her excitement in this way, "I got the email and came to know that my group was announced as winner but I did not realise that we won the first prize. It was beyond my expectation."
Lutfunnisa’s journey with Connecting Classrooms started with registering on Schools Online in last January. She was new in using internet, but had an urge to do something through this platform. Her ideas and plans got a shape after receiving Core Skills training under the Connecting Classrooms programme. She started utilising the resources and forums of Schools Online and found a new way of attracting her students to study through different project activities. She applied the learning from 'Creativity and Imagination' training module and started using the techniques of deep learning. She created an example of interactive and effective classes in her schools. She received support from the head teacher of her schools and also from some of her colleagues who actively participated in her project works.
During busy times of engagement in different projects conducted through Schools Online, she noticed the news of Commonwealth Science competition and determined to take part. But the process was not easy at all and at some point she was puzzled to find ways to do it. After applying for the competition, she was put in a group with three other teachers from England, Ghana and Nigeria. They were supposed to complete same research in all four countries and share the outcome on the forum.
The group named 'Fleming' where Lutfunnisa was working decided to work on infectious diseases. Her students were very enthusiastic to help her in data collection and analysis. They could relate the field work with their curriculum and done the whole work with great interest. They got the message of global citizenship while working on the same topic with other countries.
After coming back from Singapore, Lutfunnisa received a very warm welcome from her school and took it as inspiration to work even harder to continue her journey with Connecting Classrooms. Connecting Classrooms is a global education programme run by the British Council in partnership with the Department for International Development (DFID). It offers a free learning journey which helps teachers to improve their classroom practice and develop their ideas with like-minded teachers internationally.