This week I would like to introduce readers to Teselia Tembo. Teselia has been working for Impact Network since 2012 and for the past two years has been the Teacher Supervisor for Zone A. Teselia is a very smart, hard-working woman that loves teaching.
Can you tell us about when you first joined Impact Network?
I joined Impact Network in 2012 as a regular teacher at Chivuse Primary School. The teacher in charge at Chivuse actually spoke to the management team and told them how impressed he was with my teaching. After just one month my students in grade 1 were able to read and write!
What were some of the challenges you faced when you became a Teacher Supervisor?
We conduct monthly trainings for our teachers and as a Teacher Supervisor I usually give a presentation on the day of the training. At first I thought this was very hard, and I did not know how to come up with the topics for the presentation. I learned that when I observe the teachers, I can look for issues that they struggle with and try to make a presentation from this. I usually visit the Resource Centre in Katete to find more information on the topic, so my presentation will be better. For example, on the last training I did a presentation on “Classroom Behavior”.
How many classes do you supervise per day?
I try to visit all the schools every week, and at every school I have to observe all the teachers. I usually visit one school per day and observe five or six different teachers.
How do you get around to visit all the schools?
When I first started the job someone would drop me off at the school in the morning and pick me up in the afternoon, but it affected my work and sometimes I would arrive late. So the team decided to purchase a scooter for me. I learned to drive it in only two days! With the scooter I feel more independent because I can get around easily. For example, during the weekends I can visit my family that live in a different village.
Was it hard to learn how to use tablets and laptops?
No, the tablet was easy to learn because I received iSchool training. However, I found the laptop more challenging. Laptops are very expensive in Zambia and I did not have much practice typing. When I first started to type I was very slow - one sentence could take several minutes. Even so, the management team encouraged me to practice and I also received much help from the interns. Now I feel confident using a laptop - I can even type while I observe teachers!
What are you looking for when you observe teachers?
When I observe the teachers I look for several things. I look at the lesson plan, the methodology and objectives of the lesson. After the lesson I give feedback to the teachers so that they can improve their teaching. I always try to show the teachers respect and start with the positive feedback and I give them a chance to find solutions.
What do you like to do during your free time?
I live in Joel village, but I have very busy days at work so I do not have much free time. I enjoy spending time with my baby girl, Hannah, who is 4 months old, and my daughter, Esther, who attends grade 4 at Joel.