Last year, Bibi Kolevi, one of Foundation First’s longest serving teacher support and development officers, received Ghana’s best kindergarten teacher of the year award in recognition of her consistently exemplary practice as a kindergarten teacher and her outstanding work as a kindergarten teacher educator.
It was noted by the judges of the award that Bibi uses a highly successful child-centred, activity-based approach, where learning takes place in both her classroom and outdoors. Her classroom is an inviting place where children engage in a variety of stimulating activities in different learning areas, including reading, shopping and construction centres, and follow clear routines and rules throughout the school day.
Bibi was recognized for having taken on a variety of roles over the years at her school, Amenano Model Kindergarten and Primary School in the Western Region of Ghana. Due to being an active member of Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Bibi was elected to be the local GNAT Basic School Coordinator. At her school, Bibi has spearheaded the purchase of graduation gowns, initiated a reading club, written and directed dramas and developed a poem for the school. She has also been Chairperson of the Disciplinary Committee and has been Cultural Coordinator and Graduation Coordinator.
Bibi has built up extensive teacher educator experience during her almost ten-year career and today she is a highly valued support and development officer for Foundation First Ghana. She has also been selected by her district education directorate to train fellow KG teachers, focusing on how to deliver Ghana’s new 2019 standards-based KG curriculum.
In all these roles, Bibi has made an outstanding contribution to preschool education by training, supporting and developing teachers, headteachers and Ghana Education Service (GES) officers in many districts across Ghana.
Bibi has been an exemplary mentor and coach for trainee teachers, practising teachers, head teachers and fellow teacher educators. She has also inspired countless parents and community members and is respected for delivering talks about sanitation and health to them and for helping them to understand the importance of education. As an inspirational early childhood advocate who is passionate about children, she routeinly visits churches, mosques and other congregations to communicate the importance of early childhood education.
Bibi, on receiving her award, said “I am inspired greatly by this award and even more motivated to serve as an exemplary role model to the teaching profession.” Godwin and Julia, Foundation First’s founders, thanked Bibi for all her efforts, summarising her as “irreplaceable as a trusted ambassador for Foundation First and for the importance of early childhood education, and as an inspiration to both young kindergarten teachers finishing their training and seasoned professionals learning new methods.”