Meet 2019 Fellow Rida Rizvi, who joined the Fellowship after completing her MBA from NUST. Rida currently teaches Social Studies and English to Class 4 students at Islamabad Model School for Girls, Rajwal. The village is home to a large Christian community, which meant her classroom had a mix of Muslim and Christian students who refused to sit together or work together in groups. To address this culture of intolerance, Rida led a series of interactive activities on concepts of humanity, tolerance and beauty in diversity. She recently discovered that her Muslim students visited their Christians class fellows’ homes over Christmas, bringing them presents and helping them celebrate the holiday!
Rida’s interventions on religious tolerance and harmony are not isolated from the rest of the teaching. In fact, her classroom as a whole is a creative, safe space that encourages students to develop shared purpose. As you step into her class, it’s clear that every corner of the class is a new area to discover: the Feedback Corner, the Dream Board, the Resource Corner all have a different purpose but each is a reminder of the potential and responsibility of each student to pursue their educational and life goals. The Feedback Corner, for instance, is a space that allows her students to be involved in the lesson planning and much more. They are asked what they enjoyed in a lesson, what topics they hope to learn more about, and how they feel they can improve the classroom culture.
The corner was a big hit and students felt comfortable requesting more interactive learning activities like buzzer games and role playing because they felt that it helped them better retain content. It is rare for these young students to have the opportunity to openly share their ideas with an authority figure, but they now see that as their duty, knowing that there is someone eagerly listening to and incorporating those ideas.
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Visit
2019 Teaching Fellow Rida Rizvi