Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the second edition of the Global Teachers' Forum,Qudwa 2017,is set to tackle the biggest challenges facing educators. Starting today (7 October), the two-day global forum at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi is anticipated to convene more than 900 teachers, policy makers and educational entrepreneurs from over 80 countries.

Qudwa 2017 is organisedby the Education Affairs Office of the Crown Prince Court of Abu Dhabi, in collaboration with local and international strategic partners.In the UAE, these include the Ministry of Education,Department of Education and Knowledge in Abu Dhabi (ADEK), Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai, Sharjah Education Council and the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ACTVET).

Internationally, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the Varkey Foundation are both strategic partners. Qudwa 2017 knowledge partners including Arc Skills, Edraak - an initiative of the Queen Rania Foundation (QRF),Google for Education,Microsoft, McKinsey and Company, and Teach for All have jointlycontributed toshaping the conversation around the forum’s theme ‘Teaching for Tomorrow’.Media partners include CNN International, Sky News Arabia, and Abu Dhabi Television.

Qudwa 2017 will commence with an opening addressby His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and Chairman of the Education and Human Resources Council.

Ask, Share, Advance

The forum sessions are divided into three main tracks: Ask, Share and Advance.

The Ask Track

Teacher Talks, Meet the Mentor

The ‘Ask’ track includes teacher-led ‘Teacher Talk’ sessions in collaboration with the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Leading teachers and experts from around the world will address topics such as the integration of active learning strategies in the classroom,the impact of effective Alternative Education (AE) methods on teaching innovation and how to create more inclusive learning environments for students with special needs. The evolving role of technology in the classroom will also be addressed in these talks including the gamification of teaching,social media as a platform for future learning, and the information and communication technology (ICT) skills that are vital for future student success.

‘Meet the Mentor’ sessions will feature leading global figures who have had a positive impact on their societies. From the UAE, Her Excellency Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of State for Tolerance; Her Excellency Noura Bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs, and Her Excellency Jameela bint Salem Al Muhairi, Minister of State for Public Education will headline the sessions. The Ministers of State will highlight the educational and regulatory policies that help empower teachers in the UAEand improve outcomes for students and society at large. Also from the UAE, Dino Varkey, Chief Executive Officer of GEMS Education,as well as Victor Saad, Vice President of SABIS® will share the spotlight as homegrown, global success stories in education.

UK-based, TED-Prize winner, Dr Sugata Mitra, will explore the positive role technology can play in education and the impact it has on revolutionising the way students learn.He will draw on the results of his global, real-life, educational experiments to make the connection between access to technology and student success. Cognitive Scientist and founder of New Dawn Technologies, Dr Scott Bolland is a strong believer in the power of artificial intelligence as a tool that can help personalise education and unlock human potential. His ‘Meet the Mentor’ session will explore the future of personalised learning.So-Young Kang, CEO and Co-founder of Singapore-based Gnowbe will share her experiences as a disruptor and educator to embed values and develop character in students. She will also share her views on how digital technology is expanding experiential learning. New York Times bestselling author, Daniel Lerner applies emerging research in the field of passion to address the impact of passion on teacher and student happiness.

The Share Track

Inspirational Stories, Coffeehouse Sessions, Building Bridges

Under the‘Share’ track, sessions titled ‘Inspirational Stories’ will see speakers sharing extraordinary experiences from their own lives that have helped shape their philosophies as educators. Founder of Pencils of Promise and MissionU, Adam Braun, who turned US$25 into 300 schools, will use his personal journey to highlight strategies teachers can use to instill purpose in their work with students.Turning learning challenges into teaching opportunities will be the focus of a talk by internationally renowned educator, Aggeliki Pappa, who is also the founder of I love Dyslexia,a specialized, innovative global educational organisation focusing on holistic EFL teaching to students with dyslexia and learning differences.

‘Coffeehouse Sessions’ allowed teachers to shape the agenda of Qudwa by voting on discussion topics. Participants proposed and voted for the ones they would like to be featured at the forum via the Qudwa mobile app. Some of the selected topics include innovation in teaching methods, teacher well-being, and character education.

Networking sessions titled ‘Building Bridges’ will serve as a platform to connect attendees during the forum.

The Advance Track

Hack-a-Thon, Teacher Lab, Expert Masterclass

The ‘Advance’ track will feature a Qudwa 2017 teacher ‘Hack-a-Thon’. Participants will use the Gnowbe mobile app for educators to create engaging classroom experiences and then vote for the best one.

‘Teacher Lab’ sessions willfocus on practical solutions to the education challenges of the 21st century. Hands-on tools for teaching entrepreneurial skills in the class room will be shared by Nik Kafka, CEO and founder of Teach A Man To Fish.Jason Chan and Jerald Lam from the Awaken Group, Singapore will lead a professional development-focused session that guides teachers in using a strengths-based approach to teaching.

Learning consultant, Marwa Kassem and Nesma Farahat, Education Programme Manager of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education will share active learning techniques in digital education that support the character building of students. For her part, Nesma Farahat will highlight a recently launched digital portal for Emarati high school students called the Young Thinkers Program that focuses on all aspects of college readiness.

Basel Ajlani, Learning Consultant at Microsoft will present the latest Microsoft programmes that enable students to succeed and help teachers develop their careers through online courses that support classroom lessons.Mithun Kamath, CEO of Arc Skills will address how the gamification of learning can help sustain student motivation and engagement to develop 21stcentury skills.

Also focusing on digital learning tools, Heather Staker, President of Ready to Blend will share strategies to personalise learning and deepen student engagement with online learning tools.

In ‘Expert Masterclass’ sessions,artist and Young Global Leader ofthe World Economic Forum, Drue Kataoka will deliver an ‘Expert Masterclass’ on why creativity is the most valuable human skill of tomorrow and how teachers can set up creative classrooms. Elizabeth Green, Co-founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, Chalkbeat, will explore the common habits of effective teachers and how choosing the right digital tools can set them up for success in the classroom.


About Qudwa

Qudwa 2017 is a global forum with teachers at its heart. Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the event runs from 7 to 8 October 2017 at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi.

With the aim of achieving greater recognition for the teaching profession, Qudwa convenes more than 900 local and international education professionals to share insights and best practices for empowering teachers and inspiring students. Participation is by invitation only.

Designed by teachers for teachers, the forum explores the topic of Teaching for Tomorrow through interactive sessions, discussions, and workshops with education experts, leaders, and trailblazers from around the world.

Qudwa 2017 is jointly organised by the Education Affairs Office of the Crown Prince Court of Abu Dhabi, the UAE Ministry of Education, and the Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK) in cooperation with leading local and global organisations. Local partners include the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) in Dubai, the Sharjah Education Council, and the Abu Dhabi Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (ACTVET). Among the forum’s international partners are the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Varkey Foundation, Teach For All, Google for Education, Edraak – an initiative of the Queen Rania Foundation (QRF), McKinsey & Company, Microsoft and Arc Skills.


Source: APCO Worldwide