The Jeppe Grade 7 Maths Academy programme came to an end recently with a prize giving ceremony in the Payne Hall at which the efforts of the participants was recognised.
The programme is an iniative by staff member Mr George Dor, assisted by Mr Gabriel Janse van Rensburg, and it involved eight weeks of intensive maths tuition for 45-odd boys from primary schools in the areas around the school, and some from further afield.
“There was something similar in existence a few years ago,” Mr Dor explained, “so we decided to get it going again, as a marketing exercise for the school, but also to make a contribution to maths edication in general.”
Mr Ronald White, the school’s recruitment officer, identified the schools to invite and in the end 20 of them participated, sending their brightest prospects to the academy. “It ran on Saturday mornings for an hour and a half, although the boys spent many hours working at home as well,” Mr Dor said. “It wasn’t based on the grade 7 syllabus, we looked at how mathematics applies to the real world, at new ways of looking at problems and at problem-solving using maths. We tried to explode the myth that there is only one way of looking at a maths problem.”
There were some amazing young mathematicians on the programme and they produced some amazing work,” Mr Dor said. “We did a baseline evaluation of the boys, set at grade level, at the beginning of the course and in the end they all entered the Wits University schools maths competition. Everyone passed that and we are waiting to see who will go through to later rounds.”
Some of these protégés are expected to come to Jeppe next and we are excited at the prospect of welcoming them to our ranks.