African Maths Initiative

Sharing Initiatives in Maths Education

Computers for learning at Mbagathi Primary School

On 24 September 2014 AMI was at Mbagathi Primary School showing students and teachers how they can get the best use out of their computers for learning. AMI was invited to the school by one of the maths teachers. She was excited that the school had received funding to purchase a set of desktop and laptop computers and was eager to use them in her teaching, but, having never used computer for teaching before, she wanted some guidance.

1957625_726152364105738_5096213494980688631_oWe were happy to receive this request and with help of the teacher we arranged to meet a group of students to run a session using the school's laptops. During the 1 hour session we introduced the students to GeoGebra - free and dynamic mathematical software used to teach geometry, algebra and statistics. The students were given a brief introduction of the GeoGebra display, but for most of the session, students allowed to explore the software on their own. We challenged them to create basic shapes such as triangles, rectangles and circles.

They were then told to use the "polygon" tool to construct as many shapes as possible. By exploring the polygon tool and constructions on their own, as a class they were able to create their own definition of a polygon. This was despite telling us at the start of the lesson that they didn't know what a polygon was!

Although this was the students first ever time using GeoGebra, it was remarkable how quickly they learnt how the programs worked with a few prompts from the facilitators. By the end of the session, some students were even using tools they were never introduced to!

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After the session, we spent some time discussing with a few of the school's teachers. We also installed GeoGebra and other free, educational software on the school's desktop computers so that students can continue to do such activities in the school.

The following people were involved in this event

This is an event of the initiative

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