Earlier this month we said goodbye and thank you to Scott and Laurie Smith who have now returned home to the United States after managing the Maths Lab at Ukhanyo School since 2015. The project has been a fantastic success, as evidenced by the remarkable national systemic test results achieved by the school this year. For a full report on this achievement please see our earlier blog HERE.
Scott and Laurie – with Ukhanyo School mathematics teaching assistant Thula.
Scott explained to us how the project has revolutionised the way Maths is being taught at the school. “Instead of children listening to the teacher talking for an hour, which is the normal practice, in their respective classes they do practical maths on the tables; the teacher does very little talking and goes around assisting groups.”
The project has helped the Ukhanyo teachers to incorporate novel teaching methods into their classes. It has also shown how to accommodate learners that progress at different rates so that both high achieving and struggling children can be stimulated in the same class.
The project attracted the attention of the local media and was featured in GroundUp in its early stages. It was also welcomed by Jessica Shelver, of the Western Cape Education Department, who said “This is an outstanding initiative”.
Scott and Laurie, who were primary school teachers in the USA prior to joining Masicorp, have run the project for three years and are confident that the teachers they have worked with will continue to deliver high quality Maths lessons to the pupils. The Maths Lab remains a priority among the many educational projects Masicorp offers the community.
We gathered at the Masicorp office to say a final thank you to Scott and Laurie and look forward to staying in touch with them to discuss the legacy they have left to mathematics teaching at Ukhanyo School.