Collaboration between NWU and Vanderbijlpark Rotary Club to bolster mathematics education

Belinda Bantham -- Tue, 08/06/2019 - 14:39

Collaboration between NWU and Vanderbijlpark Rotary Club to bolster mathematics education

STEM, or Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics, is not merely a list of important subjects, but rather a cross-disciplinary educational integrative philosophy.  

This philosophy will not only make students competitive in the 21st-century global economy but would also contribute immensely to the sustainable economic development of the country.

With this in mind, and with an unyielding commitment towards benefitting society through knowledge, the North-West University (NWU) and the Rotary Club of Vanderbijlpark will host a three-day maths workshop with international experts, Marian Fletcher (Pretoria) and Swati Dave (Boston, USA).

The workshop will take place from 8 to 10 August 2019, and represents the first-ever VEDIC Mathematics workshop to be hosted by the School of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education, made possible by a sponsorship from the Vanderbijlpark Rotary Club.

The importance of a solid mathematics foundation

According to Dr Magda Kloppers, deputy director of the School of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education on the campus in Vanderbijlpark, the importance of a good mathematics foundation cannot be underplayed.

She explains that mathematics bolster analytical and creative thinking while at the same time enhancing reasoning skills, making it the cornerstone of modern-day problem-solving.

“For many students, mathematics is boring, abstract and difficult to understand, however, it is a subject that is part and parcel of our daily lives,” says Dr Kloppers. She adds that through initiatives such as the upcoming mathematics workshop, the university aims to empower students to achieve their full potential.

Dr Kloppers explains that as teaching professionals it is important to inspire and equip the next generation of maths educators to enable them to transcend the pages of mathematical textbooks and enable youngsters, especially within the South African context, to become practical problem solvers and critical thinkers.

“A good maths educator will not only help his or her students to succeed in the classroom but will also empower them to become productive members of our democratic society.”