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Story Highlights

  • The annual Mathematics Expo has been beneficial in introducing creative methods of teaching the subject, which teachers have brought into the classroom.
  • Mr. Leslie, who was addressing a recent JIS Think Tank, said that the impact of the Mathematics Expo is usually evident long after the event.
  • He expressed satisfaction with the “uptake of ideas,” which he said, is clearly impacting teaching practice and classroom instruction.

The annual Mathematics Expo has been beneficial in introducing creative methods of teaching the subject, which teachers have brought into the classroom.

Mathematics Coordinator for Region 1, Davion Leslie, said there has been tremendous buy-in from teachers of the new teaching methods showcased at the expo over the years.

He said it is fascinating to see the extent to which the teachers will go to acquire the interesting, new teaching aids and tools.

“Once teachers see something that they like, they want to know if it is available for sale and they are prepared to make purchases on the spot. They want to know if they can make it. They take pictures of it and go back to their schools and try to reproduce it. They write down design ideas and ideas for instruction because it’s a part of what they want to bring into their classrooms,” he pointed out.

Mr. Leslie, who was addressing a recent JIS Think Tank, said that the impact of the Mathematics Expo is usually evident long after the event.

“As we interact with teachers outside of that booth experience in the days and months following…they remind us of demonstrations from the expo and it is a part of what they are bringing into their classrooms,” he said.

He added that in observing instruction, it is clear to his team that the majority of teachers are making an effort to improve their practice and that in instances where they are not doing as well as expected, “it is not for a lack of trying.”

He expressed satisfaction with the “uptake of ideas,” which he said, is clearly impacting teaching practice and classroom instruction.

President of the Mico University College, Dr. Asburn Pinnock, said the institution’s research arm is also looking at techniques to identify the reason for the apparent fear of Mathematics in Jamaica and to “try to make it a little more applicable so that persons can learn the subject as it relates to real-life situations”.

The National Mathematics Expo takes place today (March 10) at the University of the West Indies’ Mona campus.

The event facilitates engagement of teachers and students in display and demonstration booths that show the importance of Mathematics in all areas of life.