ABU DHABI, 7th October, 2017 (WAM) – Addressing an audience of more than 900 teachers and experts from 80 countries around the globe, H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, emphasised the importance of adapting teaching methods and curriculums to the demands of the 21st century.

In his keynote speech at the opening of the Qudwa 2017 Global Teachers’ Forum, His Highness said: “We are living in an era where old concepts are fading away and new ones are continuing to emerge on a daily basis. Only a few decades ago, we couldn’t have imagined that e-currency would likely replace paper currency, that text messages and emails would substitute traditional postal services. Unfortunately, it seems that curriculums have not kept pace with the times.”

Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan added: “As apps, search engines and smartphones continue to become more intertwined with our daily lives, traditional curriculums will no longer be relevant. It is therefore critical that we come together to promote a new concept of education, centred around recent transformations in society.

“The ability of students to learn has increased dramatically with a world of information today available at their fingertips via tablets, computers and smart phones. In order to remain relevant, teachers must act as mentors that provide students with the tools they need to become lifelong learners who are able to constantly reinvent themselves.”

In closing, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan said: “Today, I have come as a father would, to tell you that the world outside our school walls looks very different from the world we grew up in. We should work together to understand this generation and live up to the responsibilities entrusted to us as educationists of the 21st century.”

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, Qudwa 2017 runs from 7 to 8 October at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi. Under the theme ‘Teaching for Tomorrow’, the forum convenes more than 900 education professionals from 80 countries to discuss the latest global trends in empowering teachers and inspiring students.

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