If Africa is to gain its rightful place in the global knowledge economy and secure its economic future, significant focus must be put on increasing the quality of math and science teaching. Essential to this focus is a holistic and comprehensive approach that takes into account service delivery, partnerships with existing educational systems and the strengthening of the policy environment that supports teachers and STEM education. An effective teacher training initiative is one of the best ways to effect positive and lasting behavioural change that will contribute to an increased uptake in mathematics and sciences at a national level.
In 2016, the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) launched its teacher training pilot program, The Teachers Training Program (TTP), in Cameroon in order to raise the quality of mathematics and science education at the secondary level by providing teacher training and professional development courses, promoting best practices and distributing high-quality classroom resources to in-service and pre-service teachers.
These efforts to improve STEM teaching will increase the transition of students to tertiary STEM education.
We believe by teaching Mathematics differently, in a more engaging and practical way, it will pique students’ interests in this subject and subsequently the STEM subjects because Mathematics is considered the backbone and foundation of all sciences. This will therefore increase the pipeline of students, especially girls, in this field. With many students in this field, a country’s prosperity is more imminent
AIMS TTP is here to:
- improve the quality of the teaching and learning of mathematics in Cameroon;
- increase the number of qualified teachers (Female) in mathematics in Cameroon;
- increase the Number of students (girls) going for STEM education in Cameroon;
- propose different career opportunities to STEM qualified students;
- vulgarize, demystify and show the importance of mathematics
Launched in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, the AIMS Teacher Training Program was developed to improve learning outcomes in mathematics for secondary school students. Through professional development, training workshops, high-quality classroom resources, and technology-driven Smart Classrooms, TTP is empowering teachers to improve their pedagogy and increase the transition to tertiary STEM education. Since December 2017, the program has trained over 1956 (348 women) in-service secondary school teachers in 38 workshops, 944 pre-service teachers in 12 workshops since May 2017 and sensitised 666 Principals and Delegates in 8 workshops since 2018. The Program has also launched three four-in-one state-of-the-art laboratories at the Yaoundé and Maroua Higher Teacher Training Colleges and the University of Buea.
Based on a Cascade Training Model, we reinforce the pedagogic expertise of all mathematics lecturers in the 3 Higher Teacher Training Colleges (HTTC) (Yaoundé, Bambili and Maroua), the Higher Technical Teacher Training College (HTTTC) of Kumba, and of Pedagogic Inspectors for Mathematics.
Those trained constitute the group of master trainers, who will in turn train the In-service Mathematics teachers.
89 Master Trainers have already been trained.
The In-Service Teacher Training Workshop:
The training has three distinct phases:
Pre-Workshop Learning: Four weeks of structured, peer-assisted learning of pre-requisite materials, moderated by the Master Trainers. The goal of the pre-workshop learning is to ensure that all the participants are exposed to the same ideas and foundational theories in preparation for the practical workshop.
Face-to-Face Workshop: an intensive, 6- day face-to-face training event with sessions facilitated by teams of Master Trainers. Master Trainers are a team of Pedagogic Inspectors and University Lecturers already trained in the TTP methodology, and who are now working to train all the pre- and in-service secondary school mathematics teachers.
Classroom Follow-Up: Master Trainers continue to mentor and evaluate the teachers in their classrooms to encourage implementation of the TTP Methodology regarding lesson preparation, lesson delivery, and classroom practices.
The teachers were trained on 25 Training Units (TU) from the following five (5) Modules as per the TTP curriculum for in-service teachers.
- Leadership and Responsibility.
- Planning of Pedagogic Activities.
- Teaching and Learning of Mathematics
- Mathematical Thinking and Problem Solving.
- Professional Insertion (Communities of Practice for maths teachers).
The Pre-Service Teacher Training Workshop
This seminar is designed to complement the knowledge and skills of pre-service teachers so that they go to the field with their mind set for change, and be agents of change in the philosophy of TTP which is summarized as “Learning and Teaching Mathematics Differently”.
The seminar spans over a 3-day workshop co-organized by AIMS TTP, the Ministry of Secondary Education (MINESEC) and the concerned HTTCs, for all the final year Pre-service teachers at each of the three HTTCs (Bamenda, Maroua and Yaoundé).
- This workshop is facilitated by assigned Master Trainers and TTP staff on nine (09) training units extracted from four (4) training modules of the TTP curriculum:
Module 1: Planning of Pedagogical Activities
– Exploitation of pedagogic documents
– Qualities of a good mathematics lesson
Module 2: Teaching and Learning of Mathematics,
– Lesson Preparation and Delivery,
– Conception and use of activities in the Mathematics lesson,
– Gender Responsive Pedagogy and inclusive education in the mathematics classroom.
Module 3: Mathematical Thinking and Problem Solving
– Mathematical thinking and problem solving
Module 4: Professional Insertion
– The management of Mathematics as a subject
– Community of Teachers
– Different school councils
Principal Sensitization Workshop
The purpose of this workshop is to educate the Principals and delegates on the necessary support to be given to mathematics teachers.
This workshop is a one day face-to-face practical workshop with practical activities designed to bridge theory with reality, facilitated by assigned Facilitators and TTP staff.
The workshop sessions are facilitated by selected Facilitators and are organized, moderated, and supervised by TTP staff. The seminar focused on the following four (4) Modules:
- AIMS in brief.
- Pedagogic and administrative duties of teachers, principals and inspectors.
- Use of pedagogic documents
- The importance of Mathematics