We all know how the saying goes: “When life gives you Quest Forward Learning, you become a Mentor.” Francis Lusabe began with Opportunity Education as a quest designer for the Tanzanian curriculum. This experience influenced him to adopt Quest Forward Learning in his classroom at Mtakuja Secondary School teaching biology and chemistry. After previously teaching for four years in a traditional setting, Francis had to adopt new practices to go from giver of information to facilitator of learning. “My mindset has greatly shifted from the way I used to perceive learners as ‘empty’ scholars who need to be spoon fed to a new perspective and experience that learning has to induce and nurture the natural curiosity of a student.”
With the introduction of a new curriculum design, tablets, artifacts, and student collaboration, Francis’s approach to instructing students was changed forever. Rather than focusing on only providing his students with the academic information, Francis now strives to lead a classroom that will encourage and nurture the natural curiosity of the learners. Over the past two years, Francis has watched his students grow with Quest Forward Learning. The Mtakuja students have gained confidence in themselves, excelled in communication skills, achieved subject mastery, and fostered interpersonal relationships with their peers and mentors. “Quest Forward Learning has revamped my social relationship with my students due to frequent collaborative working throughout the quest. Learners are more free to share their challenges and successes they encounter inside or outside the classroom.”
One of Francis’s favorite memories is when a struggling student gave an excellent presentation with a unique approach, which enabled her to stand out as a leader amongst her peers for the first time. It’s student successes like this that drive Francis’s love and appreciation for aiding his students as they strive to reach their dreams. Even when challenges such as loss of power and inability to access the quests in the apparise in the classroom, Francis continues to use the Quest Forward Learning methodology and technology to scaffold activities and set goals to tackle the topic of the intended quest in an offline mode. He truly believes that Quest Forward Learning is an “educational game changer” and can be easily adapted at any school.
Like his students, Francis has also experienced positive personal change in his intrinsic motivation for teaching by applying the essential habits (Learn more about the Quest Forward Learning’s six essential habits here). With Quest Forward Learning, he continues to grow as a mentor and gain confidences in building the essential skills and habits students needed to achieve their goals and create value in their communities. Francis stays motivated by communicating and collaborating with his mentors, Daniel Mlambo and Fred Mollel, who encourage him to overcome challenges and guide him on how to better lead his students. His advice for other Quest Forward mentors, experienced and new, is: “shift your mindset, become flexible, and growth and triumph is assured.”
Note: Francis Lusabe is the Second Master Mentor at Mtakuja Secondary School and a Biology and Chemistry Mentor in Moshi, Tanzania (Check out where it's located here). Mtakuja Secondary School has about 250 students, 120 of which use Quest Forward Learning full time.