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Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers

by Teach For Bulgaria/Zaedno v chas
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Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers
Support Teach For Bulgaria Teachers

Dear supporter,

I would like to share with you a story about Denitsa and her students from "Paisii Hilendarski" secondary school, who participated in a national speech and debate tournament in English for students 8-12 grade, called BEST. "Paisii Hilendarski" secondary school is the first school from the Srednogorie region, Bulgaria who participate in this event. 11 students worked hard to prepare for the tournament and as a result one duo of students reached quarter-finals, one duo reached semi-finals and 1 child won a medal in poetry.

Denitsa says: “Our team was founded only a year ago and we are very proud of our students' commitment and achievements.”

By participating in this competition, the students form "Paisii Hilendarski" school mastered a number of skills, such as performing in front of an audience, reading literacy, influential speaking, teamwork, constructive competitiveness and networking. During the preparation, they helped each other to work as a team and during the tournament, they worked intensively with students from other schools and performed in front of judges.

Without your support, this would not be possible. Thank you!

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“I decided that if I was going to grow professionally somewhere, I wanted it to be where I could contribute the most.”, shares Ivana, a participant in the Teach For Bulgaria program, currently teaching English in Vetren.

In the past few years many aspiring people, who study or work abroad, have decided to transition and continue their life and career paths in Bulgaria. Such is the case with many Teach For Bulgaria participants, who have decided to pursue professional development in Bulgaria after years of international experience. To many of them, teaching is a way to apply their experience and skills to help students, who can benefit from their support the most. Teaching, on the other hand, is also a way for them to grow professionally and develop leadership skills by working in a new and challenging environment.

Ivana is a 22-year-old professional, who spent three years in London, studying Art History at University College London. She also worked for an organization, called Bulgarian Careers Fair, where she managed their blog and the social media of the organization. Even though she enjoyed London, Ivana was certain that they “were not compatible for a long-term relationship". "I wanted to build a life and start a family in Bulgaria some day and I knew that I had to contribute in order to enjoy my life here,” Ivana adds.

Ivana found a way to contribute by becoming a teacher. She teaches English at Primary School “St. Cyril and St. Methodius” in the town of Vetren. “I decided that this was something useful I could do for myself right after university,” she shares. “My job as a teacher is a way to grow, to leave the social bubble I used to live in, and to do something good for someone else.”

In her first days at school Ivana discovered one of the advantages of living in Bulgaria. “I was surprised how easy it was to make things happen here – when we invite guests in our classes, for example, it can happen very quickly and we don’t need to plan it two months in advance.” She also shares that it is easier for her to achieve work-life balance here. “I expected to be happier, calmer, and to fit in better here and that’s exactly what happened,” Ivana concludes.

Ivana is one of many inspirational Teach For Bulgaria participants, who devote their time to improving the educational outcomes for students in Bulgaria.

Your generous support allows us to attract, train and support aspiring professionals like Ivana to become teachers in high-need schools in the short-term and long-term leaders and change agents in Bulgaria.

Should you want to support TFB teachers by becoming a role model in their classrooms, or a mentor – do not hesitate to reach out to us and express your interest.

You can find additional information about TFB’s on our website and Facebook page.

Ivana
Ivana
TFB Cohort 2017
TFB Cohort 2017

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let the classes begin
let the classes begin

Dear Teach For Bulgaria supporters,

On September 15, 59 Teach For Bulgaria participants, who successfully completed their training over the summer months, began teaching. They joined 108 second-year teachers and for 2017/2018 academic year, Teach For Bulgaria participants will be teaching in 80 partner-schools in 12 regions of the country.

TFB continues its ongoing efforts to increase its reach by including new regions and for the first time in 2017, the organization partners with schools in Pleven and Veliko Tarnovo.

So far, 163 people have graduated from the program, the majority of whom continue to be professionally engaged in education through work in schools, NGO organizations, social entrepreneurship and though participation in policy making.

Another key highlight from the past months was the annual Conference Education 2017, which took place on November 10 in Sofia. The conference was organized by Teach For Bulgaria, Education Bulgaria 2030 and the Representation of the European Commission in Bulgaria. Its main focus this year was on recruiting, selecting and retaining effective teachers. International and local experts took part in the discussions and the event was attended by more than 400 people. The Bulgarian Minister of Education, who opened the conference, stressed on the importance of investing in teachers and ensuring that the institutions are working effectively. He also added that it is essential to ensure access to quality education for all children. 

Prior to the conference, the Ministry of Education requested from TFB to prepare a White Paper, outlining TFB’s learnings and recommendations for policies and best practices regarding the recruitment, selection, training and retention of highly motivated and effective new teachers. TFB's Chief Officer for Public Partnerships engaged a team of 11 TFB teachers and alumni, some members of our Executive Board and 4 TFB team members in the writing and editing of the document. The report was well-received by the Minister and his staff with a stated commitment to use some of the best practices described as they shape their updated policy on new teacher recruitment, training and retention. You can review the document in the attachments below.

We would like to once again thank you for your support, which allows us to support motivated people to become teachers and develop best practices to share with our extended community, including public and private institutions.

If you would like to learn more about our latest work –please visit Teach For Bulgaria’s official website below.

In the classroom
In the classroom
are we making progress?
are we making progress?
Cohort 2017
Cohort 2017
Panelists at Conference Education 2017
Panelists at Conference Education 2017
Conference Education 2017
Conference Education 2017

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While waiting for team #8 to arrive.
While waiting for team #8 to arrive.

Teams are on the starting line, the jury — at their places, the competition instructions are now being given. For the fifth-graders from the villages of Byala Slatina, Galiche, Harlets and Tarnava the end of the school year is not simply about grades, but it is rather about a very special event — a “Language Culture Competition”, which assesses the students’ knowledge in Bulgarian language as well as their teamwork skills. The aim, however, is not simply to crown the winner, but rather to motivate the children, help them believe in themselves and give them the opportunity to showcase the results of their year-long work.

The initiator of the competition is Ralitsa, a first-year Teach For Bulgaria participant, who teaches Bulgarian language and literature in the “Hristo Botev” School in the village of Tarnava, Vratsa Region. For her, the job of a teacher is more than simply teaching a certain subject in class. She has a degree in Bulgarian Language and History from the University of Rousse, followed by a Master‘s Degree in the University of Veliko Tarnovo. While she was doing her mandatory teaching practice, she realized she felt very comfortable in the classroom and so, she sought other professional opportunities as a teacher. However, while she was teaching in a village in the Rousse region, she witnessed firsthand the bitter reality that being a teacher does not end with the last school bell for the day.

“There was a fifth-grader in the school with the face of a child and the hands of an adult because he used to cut trees in order to earn money’’, Ralitsa remembers. She met poor children in the school, some with underdeveloped communication skills, having found themselves in hard family situations, going as far as domestic violence.

It was then that Ralitsa realized that being a teacher does not simply mean planning a lesson, but also spending quality time with the children and taking into account the environment they live in.

Ralitsa joined Teach For Bulgaria because she saw it as an opportunity to find support for her approach to motivate the students, learn from TFB’s best practices, develop her skills and be a part of the TFB community. She relocated from Rousse to the Vratsa Region in 2016, and starting this September, in addition to her teaching in the village of Tarnava, she will also be teaching in the school in Galiche.

We would like to once again thank you for your support, which allows us to support teachers like Ralitsa, influence the lives of children in need and develop best-practices to share with our extended community, including public and private institutions.

If you would like to learn more about our latest work –please visit Teach For Bulgaria’s official website below.

Ralitsa giving instructions to the teams.
Ralitsa giving instructions to the teams.
Everyone received an award for their efforts
Everyone received an award for their efforts

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At the end of the first "Gramotko" round
At the end of the first "Gramotko" round

Dear TFB supporters,

On May 18th in the village of Brestnica, students from 3-4th grade and their second-half-of day teacher Bilyana, organized and participated in a literacy competition, called “Gramotko”, alongside their peers from the nearby villages of Oreshene and Zlatna Panega.

Isa* (photo below), an 8-year-old girl from Oreshene, shares that for her, “Gramotko” was the first competition she had ever attended. She has two brothers, one older and one younger than her and hopes her parents take her on a trip to Greece for their next vacation. While waiting outside for the judges to announce the results, she tells me that she worked hard to do well on this competition. She also secretly whispers in my year that her math teacher, Svetla, helped them during their math classes by giving them problems and that her TFB teachers Svetla, miss Iggy and miss Deni, convinced her parents to let her visit the nearby village and take part in the competition.

Bilyana, Denislav, Denitsa, Svetlana, Iglika and Vesela are six TFB teachers, who teach in villages in the Lovech region and they work to provide opportunities for their students, to increase their motivation and broaden their horizons. Outside of the classroom, they collaborate and support each other in organizing events for their students, taking them on trips and sharing best-practices from the classroom.

The competition consisted of three rounds: reading, writing and mathematics and it aimed to provoke students to work in teams to solve the tasks at hand. The rules were simple: the problems were of varying difficulty, with the most difficult ones bringing the most points. At the start of each round each team had 5 minutes to decide on how to divide the tasks among each other, so that each person had at least one problem to solve. Teamwork was encouraged and there were no penalties for giving a friend a hand and helping him/her out.

As the judges came out of the “judging room” they carried prizes and awards for all teams.Some won 1st prize, others 4th, but each participant felt their preparation and efforts were acknowledged. 

Although 8-year-old Ivo* (photo below) from Oreshene felt a bit sad that the cup they won was smaller than what some of the other teams in the 1st place received, he shared that it was his first competition and he will work harder for the next one because he really wants to bring a bigger cup back to Oreshene.

Teach For Bulgaria works to provide access to quality education for every child in the country. In the 2016-2017 school year, our 165 teachers are reaching over 8000 students in 10 regions, studying in 89 partner-schools.

Your support allows us to attract more people like Bilyana, Denislav, Denitsa, Svetlana, Iglika and Vesela, who enter the lives of the underperforming children in Bulgaria and work towards expanding their horizons, giving them more opportunities to succeed and motivate them to continue to learn and grow.

You can find more information about TFB’s work on our website or Facebook page, which you can find in the links below.

*Names of the students have been changed to protect their identity.

8-year-old girl Isa* in the yard
8-year-old girl Isa* in the yard
Focused on the tasks at hand
Focused on the tasks at hand
Winners of a big cup
Winners of a big cup
Ivo* holds a small cup, but aims for a bigger one
Ivo* holds a small cup, but aims for a bigger one
YAY!
YAY!
as they were waiting for the results..
as they were waiting for the results..

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Organization Information

Teach For Bulgaria/Zaedno v chas

Location: Sofia, Bulgaria - Bulgaria
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @zaednovchas
Project Leader:
Anjela Deyanska
Sofia, Bulgaria
$70,795 raised of $100,000 goal
 
709 donations
$29,205 to go
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