Ferdos Hajian



Ferdos was born in a deprived village in the north of Iran. He did not enjoy his schooling for a variety of reasons, including a dangerous journey to school, physical punishments, and discrimination between poor and rich students. Nevertheless, he was encouraged to become a teacher and entered teacher training college at age 18. Determined to make his students’ education different to his own, he taught his first primary school assignment in a way that combined songs and games, promoted peace, explored nature, and removed onerous homework.

His method, ‘Township of Alphabet’, was broadcast on local TV and was welcomed by the public. This led to Ferdos becoming involved in teacher training. Several thousand teachers and principals have attended his classes. Subsequently, Ferdos studied Theatre in Tehran, while teaching primary school in the mornings and also training teachers. He has received several national and international awards including the Jan Amos Comenius Diploma of Honor award from UNESCO. He became a writer of educational textbooks, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Architecture, President of Azad University of Tehran Markaz, and senior manager of Literature and Art department of the International Center for Dialogue among Civilisations, while still teaching at primary schools part-time. He remains the headteacher of several poor primary schools.

If awarded the prize, Ferdos would establish a centre for supporting children and women victims of war and violence, establish a school of peace culture and global citizenship, and create a non-profit university of teacher training.






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