Numeracy and literacy levels among learners from Texnybet Junior Secondary School in KwaZulu-Natal have improved from below 40% in previous years to more than 90% in 2014, according to this year’s Annual National Assessment results.
Texnybet teacher, Ms Mzizi was all smiles as she showed the ANA results to the World Vision’s National Director, Paula Barnard and other WVSA leaders who had visited her school to witness the drastic change in learner’s performance as a result of the organisation’s intervention.
Last year saw World Vision engaging Rhodes University for the training of more than 100 foundation phase teachers on numeracy and literacy. This came after research found that South African teachers do not have the skills needed to teach mathematics. The research conducted by Stellenbosch University found that the education system had failed to put together the appropriate teacher in-service training that would increase the content knowledge of the critical subjects in young minds.
Ms Mzizi is the only foundation phase educator from her school who attended the training. It was this training that exposed her to teaching techniques she had never learned in her 15 years as an educator. “I learned appropriate activities to introduce learners to basic mathematical understanding and ideas on interesting practice activities and resources that educators can use to help learners understand the subject better. When I came back from the training, I trained my colleagues on these techniques and today we are reaping the fruit,” said Ms Mzizi.
As a child-focused organisation with a responsibility to ensure quality education for children, World Vision decided to intervene to improve this situation.
“As a former teacher myself I know the critical role primary school educators play in the development of young and tender brains. They shape children’s worldview – something that can determine the children’s future success or failure in school, work and personal lives. The way in which primary school educators introduce children to mathematics, language, science, and social studies, is the most critical,” says World Vision SA’s National Director, Paula Barnard.