The community engagement and service gives students the opportunity to use their capabilities by attending various voluntary activities, awareness programs in a group or with other institutes.
Office of Co-curricular Activates (OCA) and BRAC Universality is very much engaged in this services so that our students become responsible citizen of the country. Every semester students activity in various clubs through their initiatives perform various events with this aim. Office of Co-curricular activities supports them to these movements.
BRAC Institute of Languages (BIL), as a part of its commitment to the betterment of society and ensuring social justice, has successfully completed a FREE English Language Course entirely run by MA in TESOL students. The participants of the course were children of employees of BRAC and BRAC University, whose monthly salary is not more than ৳20,000/-.
As a part of Teaching Practicum 01 course (TSL 507) of MA in TESOL Programme, students need to practice classroom teaching at diverse levels to make them competent as language teachers and practitioners. Teaching Practicum Course is a functional approach to teaching and this course creates spaces where fundamental language teaching skills are expressed through organizing and utilizing students’ learning experiences. Furthermore, it provides students with first-hand experience of implementing course concepts, language theories, teaching methods, approaches, and techniques in real life settings.
Usually, students of such professional courses utilize Lab Schools for class observations and practice teaching tasks of practicum course on which they are required to write reflective reports. Parallelling Lab Schools, BIL initiated this unique opportunity for the TESOL students by inviting students of outreach community. This internship-like experience allows the TESOL students to gain valuable educational experiences, apply the language teaching skills in real settings, investigate the gaps between theories and practices, and contextualize theories with the classroom settings.
In order to ensure that the TESOL students get the maximum benefit of exposure, BIL has created a space for them to practice teaching by inviting participation from school and college students affiliated with BRACU and BRAC families. Based on the needs assessment carried out for the invited students, two groups were made, namely beginner level (Grade six to eight) and elementary level (SSC to HSC). TESOL students were also put into various groups to teach their target students. The course teacher of Syllabus Design designed the syllabus for the participants, whereas the course teacher of Teaching Practicum 01 guided the TESOL students on preparing and using materials for hands-on practice.
As the classroom teaching approach was functional, interactive and participatory, the invited students received exposure to various innovative and effective classroom experiences. It was noticed that they became extremely enthusiastic and motivated and were eager to continue the course. This exercise in providing the platform for teaching practice in authentic setting has proved to be another feather in the cap of the MA in TESOL programme of BIL.
Sixth grade students of the Chittagong Grammar School, Dhaka (CGSD) participated in Arch.KIDS: an outreach program of the Department of Architecture, BRAC University on February 11, 2016. The program initiated with the idea of creating awareness among the future generation about our environment and the built environment. The latest session Reuse Recycle Reinvent had an intention to focus on the waste children generate in their everyday life as a city dweller, and make them aware about recycling and reusing the materials they usually throw away in innovative ways.
Prior to the workshop, the children of CGSD received a recycled paper bag sponsored by Jatra, to collect dry waste for three days. On Monday morning 28 students arrived in the department with bags full of paper, boxes, plastic bottles, chocolate wrappers, metal cans. Volunteers, students and young lecturers of the department waiting to welcome them weighted each of the bags and all together there were 10 kg of waste. All of those were piled up in the floor and the perfectly decorated space suddenly became messy….yet the mess looked promising with so many bright minds around.
Dr. Huraera Jabeen, a facilitator of Arch.KIDS and the Assistant Professor of the department welcomed the children to take up a challenge of rethinking waste as a resource and find some innovative ideas using the materials they collected only in three days. Assistant Professor Sheikh Rubaiya Sultana, another facilitator of the workshop, discussed on the amount of waste we, as a city dweller, generate each day; how long each type of material take to decompose to emphasize why we need to reduce, reuse and recycle thinking about the environment.
Children gathered in groups of four, discussed and brain stormed to find ideas looking on to their pile of waste. It took some lively discussions and arguments to arrive at a suggestion that will use different materials from the waste, reuse and recycled to make something functional as well as with aesthetic value. Then the next fun part began, actually making it up. With the help of the volunteers children were cutting materials, attaching with glue, painting for an hour. In the meantime, one or two members from each group were going around negotiating exchange of materials; peeping into the studio class rooms to look for reusable materials left by architecture students.
The final ideas were brilliant: a floating market made out of plastic bottles that will help vendors to continue their business during natural disasters such as flooding or water-logging; a multi-tasking table made out of bottle and egg-crates one can take even in a swimming pool to keep a glass of drink floating while relaxing; a shelf-real made out of cereal box and plastic bottles strengthened with paper to use as a shelf to keep books and files; and ofcourse a desk organizer to arrange pencils, pens and many tiny things while keeping everyone’s mom happy.
Professor Shaheda Rahman, Chairperson of the department enjoyed their presentation of ideas before giving away the certificates. The Arch.KIDS left with inspiration to rethink waste as resources to save the environment.
February 11th, 2016
November 28th, 2015