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The Erongo Regional Directorate has partnered with the Walvis Bay Salt Refiners to provide teachers with the necessary knowledge and skills to develop the number sense and numeracy skills of grade 1, 2 and 3 learners.

A total of 27 junior primary teachers from Tamariskia Primary School, Swakopmund Primary School and Westside High School participated in a professional development course that took place over five two-day workshops between June and October this year.

With the ongoing teachers’ strike currently taking place nationwide, these teachers opted not to join their colleagues but instead chose to celebrate completing this course.

The workshop was facilitated by Magret Courtney-Clarke and introduced teachers to some theoretical background, affordable materials, models, teaching approaches and sequences.

“Teachers were tasked to apply what they have learnt in the classroom after each workshop. The focus of the programme was on understanding basic mathematical principles involving number and operations, on developing strategies to derive facts and solve problems and on developing quick and correct recall of basic facts such as addition and subtraction facts and multiplication tables,” said Courtney-Clarke.

The managing director of Walvis Bay Salt Refiners, André Snyman, said they realised that in order to improve the education system, constant development of teachers was necessary.

“Another reason we are involved in this initiative is because of the subject, mathematics. As an operating mine we cannot operate without engineers, chemists or accountants. None of these core skills would have been available if our employees did not receive the best possible education in mathematics,” he said.

The teachers each received a certificate for completing the course.