ASA Trains 70 SHS Mathematics Teachers at Bolgatanga in Upper East Region

Without Mathematics, there is little you can do. Everything around you is numbers: everything around you is Mathematics(Shakuntala Devi). Conversely, there are many students who have difficulty appreciating mathematics and its related subjects. A good number of students shy away from subjects that relate to Mathematics.

In 2017, the African Science Academy (ASA) introduced the Math Masterclass- a program designed to develop the capacity of Senior High School (SHS) mathematics teachers, equipping them to better support their students by using innovative, inclusive and differentiated pedagogical approaches to teach specific aspects of mathematics. The ASA Math Masterclass which began as a 3-day event was streamlined to a one-day practical and insightful seminar designed to improve teachers’ scope of knowledge on technology in mathematics, theories and research on how to actively engage learners in innovative ways that foster collaboration and critical thinking. 

Tullow Oil has, since the inception of the initiative, been the benevolent sponsor of the Math Masterclass. Starting with a cohort of 20 mathematics teachers, the African Science Academy has since progressively increased the opportunity for the number of participating teachers to seventy (70) in this edition. With facilitation support from expert trainers at the Ghana Society for Education Technology (GSET) alongside staff of ASA, the masterclass has impacted over 520 SHS Mathematics Educators and 52,000 students nationwide.

The 8th edition of the Math Masterclass was held on Wednesday, 23rd November 2022 at the Blue Sky Hotel Conference Room at Bolgatanga in the Upper East region of Ghana. With support from the regional directorate of the Ghana Education Service (GES), a total of seventy (70) teachers: two(2) teachers selected across all 35 SHSs within the region with special consideration for female maths teachers. In attendance was the Executive Director of the African Gifted Foundation, Ms. Yasameen Al-jboury, the Headteacher of the Africa Science Academy, Ms. Gifty Ghansah; Mr. Miracule D. Gavor, a doctoral Mathematics Education Technology Researcher at the UCL Knowledge Lab, Mr. Stephen Nukporfe, a professional associate and facilitator at GSET; Ms Mollydean Zong, the Regional Training Officer of GES and the GES STEM Coordinator, Ms Faustina Agetara.

The discussions centred on assessment in the classroom, which is an important step in the teaching and learning process. The participants learned that assessment should be integrated in the learning process and not just done at the end of the lesson. They discussed the types, strategies, purposes and reasons for inculcating assessment in the learning process in order to achieve the aim of helping the students understand and improve in their learning of mathematics. 

To sum up, participants were introduced to tech tools and platforms for teaching and learning of Mathematics such as Symbolab, Desmos, WolframAlpha, Khanacademy and Geogebra to support teachers and students. Symbolab was thoroughly discussed and the participants were guided through using the application on their smartphones. The teachers discovered the essence and importance of integrating technology in the mathematics classroom.

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