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NGO donates Science teaching manuals to GES

BY: Yaa Kuffour Senyah
Dr Heather Beem (middle), CEO of PEN, presenting the manuals to Emmanuel Ocquaye (right), a representative of the Science Education Unit, GES. Looking on is Dr Elsie Effah-Kaufmann ( left), Associate Professor, University of Ghana
Dr Heather Beem (middle), CEO of PEN, presenting the manuals to Emmanuel Ocquaye (right), a representative of the Science Education Unit, GES. Looking on is Dr Elsie Effah-Kaufmann ( left), Associate Professor, University of Ghana

An educational non-governmental organisation, Practical Education Network (PEN), has donated 1,400 science teacher resource manuals to the Ghana Education Service (GES) in Accra for practical teaching and learning.

The manuals provide guidelines and instructions for teachers in line with the new basic school science curriculum to make the teaching of science interesting and practical for learners.

The resource materials consisted of 700 manuals for lower primary levels and 700 manuals for upper primary levels.

The donation followed the training of over 1,000 science teachers across the country by PEN to incorporate local materials such as straws, batteries, corks, among others, into classroom activities to make the subjects more practical and enjoyable for learners.

Donation

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of PEN, Dr Heather Beem, said the materials constituted an effort to change the theory-based teaching method in Science to a practical system by educating teachers to engage their students in practical lessons using materials around them.

She said the manuals would expose teachers to readily available local materials by equipping them to conduct experiments and apply what they taught their students.

Dr Beem urged the GES to distribute the manuals to teachers so that they built on their knowledge to impact their students.

The National Integrated Science Coordinator, Science Education Unit of the GES, Emmanuel Omang Ocquaye, lauded the organisation for the effort intended to bring change into the subjects and the educational system.

He pledged the Unit’s support and partnership to PEN and gave an assurance that the manuals presented would be distributed and used effectively across the country.

PEN Resource Centre

As part of its activities to support the development of the educational sector in the country, the non-profit organisation inaugurated the PEN Resource Centre on its office premises in North Legon - Accra.

The facility is a space that showcases hands-on science activities with local materials.

It was established with the support of the Rotary Club of Colorado Springs in the United States.

The Centre seeks to give experiential learning to students, teachers and its stakeholders who make use of the facility.

An Associate Professor of the University of Ghana and the Quiz Mistress of the National Maths and Science Quiz, Dr Elsie Effah-Kaufmann, inaugurated the Centre, and said the Centre had changed the story of practical teaching, recounting her experience as a student who had no form of application or hands-on experience.

“By making these experiences available and accessible to our students, you are changing our lives and changing what the future looks like for Ghana and Africa because hopefully some of these students would now begin to believe in the power of Science to transform our society,” she stated.

She charged the GES to make it worthwhile to do hands-on activities by putting in place a reward system to motivate and attract students and teachers to the practical aspect of teaching and learning.