August 2, 2021

AIMSSEC Language and Communication SAMO 2 Online course

AIMSSEC, in its ongoing journey which seeks to build capacity of mathematics teachers through a series of in-service training courses, focusing on mathematics teachers from Intermediate Phase (IP), Senior Phase (SP) to Education and Training Phase (FET) in South Africa, with the CAPS document as the underpinning curriculum, has done it again. This time the focus was on SP and FET teachers. AIMSSEC believes in strengthening capacity while equipping mathematics teachers with the desired 21st century skills.

The Language and Communication SAMO 2 Online course (LC SAMO 2 Online) was geared towards developing mathematical understanding and knowledge acquisition through properly structured

mathematical language. The course brought to light the pivotal role instructional language plays

in achieving mathematical proficiency, observing all facets of Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK).

The Language and Communication to develop mathematical knowledge, understanding and skills for the 21st Century (LC SAMO 2) online course was offered to ninety-five mathematics teachers by AIMSSEC from 6 February 2021 till 30 May 2021 with the closing ceremony on 19 June 2021. The course format was a combination of home-study through Google Classroom, writing assignments and participation in four live Saturday sessions, on via Zoom. The LC SAMO 2 Course was based on a teaching strategy that involved students regularly in problem-solving and it was especially suitable for mathematics teachers from schools that enter learners for Old Mutual South African Mathematics Olympiad competitions. This professional development course was designed to support and help teachers to cope with the very difficult situation that the pandemic has caused, with some learners in school and some at home.

Of the ninety-five students registered for the LC SAMO 2 online course, twenty-five subsequently withdrew bringing the total down to seventy.

Low attendance during live broadcasts was a problem. However, opportunities were created for teachers to watch live recordings in their own time. Material was also made available by the presenters so as not to exclude teachers who may have missed the presentations. Links to the live webinar sessions were shared both on Google Classroom and on WhatsApp to enable the teachers to connect.

Summary of results

There were twenty-two distinctions, twenty-four merits and eighteen passes giving a total of sixty-four out of seventy who successfully completed the course.

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