The Ministry of Education has recently concluded its e-training sessions of 182 judges from different school across the UAE, through the MS Teams online platform, to qualify them to participate in the 5th edition of the Arab Reading Challenge.
The training sessions focused on three basic elements including the importance of arbitration within the school, qualities of the reading student, and criteria of arbitration.
The ministry held two e-training sessions for two groups of judges last Wednesday and Thursday, led by Dr. Fawzi Al-Aak, an Arabic language specialist at the ministry’s curriculum department. While the first session included judges from Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Qaiwain, Ras Al Khaimah, and Fujairah, the second session included judges from Abu Dhabi, Al Ain and Al Dhafra.
Each school will nominate three students from its four age groups that include students from grades 1 to 3, grades 4 to 6, grades 7 to 9, and grades 10 to 12.
Commenting on the completion of the e-training sessions, Dr. Amna Al Dahak Al Shamsi, Assistant Under-Secretary of the Care and Activities Sector at the Ministry of Education said, “We are delighted to have organised the training sessions for the UAE schools’ judges participating in the 5th edition of the Arab Reading Challenge, as part of the initiative launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. It succeeded in bringing together millions of school students from 52 countries worldwide, to participate in a constructive project with outputs representing additions to the cognitive and scientific levels of Arabic speaking students or non-Arabic speaking students learning the language, and who are aware of the importance of reading in developing their personalities and enriching their knowledge in many aspects of life. This initiative represents a vital complement to the educational process around the world.”
She added, “The ministry is dedicated to continuing its activities and initiative even with the transition to distance learning, by investing in its multiple smart learning platforms. The implementation of the e-training sessions came to reflect the ministry’s commitment to contribute to initiatives with educational outreach. The challenge also allowed students, considering the current circumstances, to stay home and spend more time in completing their reading passports, and increasing their reading rates of books and stories with the support of their parents.”
The Arab Reading Challenge, which is held in the United Arab Emirates each year, attracted 21 million students for its 5th edition, with an increase of 55 percent compared to the number of participants in the previous edition that recorded participation of 13.5 million students from 49 countries.
The Arab Reading Challenge initiative embodies the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, and is aimed at instilling a passion for reading and learning in the hearts of young people.
The strategic goals of the initiative focus on raising awareness of the Arabic reading reality and upgrading it globally, deepening the sense of belonging to a shared future, spreading the values of tolerance, moderation and acceptance of the other, influencing a generation of distinguished and innovative people, and providing an integrated model for projects with a similar nature across the Arab world, in addition to contributing to the movement of authorship, translation, printing and publishing in order to further, enrich Arab libraries and enriching the cultural environment among students.
All elimination stages are subject to the direct supervision of the Arab Reading Challenge Committees, which also supervise the work of the judges who choose the winners from each cycle from the participating schools based on accurate criteria where students must read 50 different books on a variety of topics for each. Those who do not speak Arabic and People of Determination are allowed to read 25 books appropriate to their abilities.
The challenge includes several elimination stages to choose champions. These stages range from different grades, cycles, schools and educational areas, leading to the selection of the champions at the country level, either in Arab or non-Arab participating countries.
Distinguished champions and the distinguished school are chosen from each participating country based on strict, unified criteria that guarantee a comprehensive evaluation of the various aspects and data before selecting the winners.
The total number of participants in all five editions of the Arab Reading Challenge reached to more than 54 million students, who filled 50.5 million passports to summarise the books they read, while 96,000 schools are participating in the fifth edition of the challenge compared to 67,000 in the previous edition of the challenge, with an increase of 43 percent.