There is no alternative to quality education but extra care in Mathematics, at the primary level. Most of the primary students in rural areas fear learning Mathematics as they do not find it enjoyable.
“It has been observed that students who start secondary education without proficiency in mathematics at the primary level, fail to do well at the secondary level. And children are weak in mathematics if they do not get interest at an early stage. Their fallout rates are much higher than those of others,” Educationalist Emdadul Haque told Bangladesh Post.
In this regard, the government has taken an initiative to make mathematics classes easy and enjoyable from the primary level.
To overcome the fear of Mathematics, the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education has decided to make mathematics classes enjoyable in 65,000 primary schools across the country.
According to the new decision, the easy and enjoyable way of mathematics learning method will be applied to all students of primary schools under a sub-component programme of Primary Education Development Programme (PEDP)-4. In the first phase of the programme, Class one and Class two school children will get the facilities from January next year while students of Class Three, Four and Five will get easy and enjoyable mathematics learning facilities from 2021.
For this, about one lakh and 30 thousand teachers will be given eight-day training through training programme in two phases. And a 100-person core trainer pool is being formed in this regard. More than 3,000 teacher trainer pools will be formed, taking six trainers from each upazila of the country, sources said.
According to sources, these trainers will train the maths teachers at the school on mathematics Olympiad techniques. Later, trained teachers will make mathematics classes interesting and easy by applying the theoretical implications of their learned knowledge.”
Confirming this, Md. Akram-al-Hossain, secretary of the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education, told Bangladesh Post, “We have taken up a big programme to reduce the fear of mathematics among primary students. From next year, primary school teachers will make their math classes easy and enjoyable by applying the technique of ‘Math Olympiad’. We will begin it from the class one and class two students.”
The secretary also said, “A mathematical Olympiad was organized under a pilot project to test the potential for year-long pre-feasibility enhancement. We have taken initiative to bring all the students of all schools across the country under the Mathematics Olympiad because of the successful pilot project. For this, a master trainer pool has been set up to train the teachers in two stages. After the training in December, our teachers will teach mathematics in an ‘enjoyable’ way from the next year.”
It has known that one-year pre-primary education and five-year primary education are currently conducted in the country. Mathematics is taught as a prerequisite for this education but recent surveys and studies have shown that most of the primary students are not able to achieve the required skills in mathematics.
According to the National Student Assessment of 2011, 2013 and 2015, about 50 percent, 57 percent and 41 percent of students respectively of class three and 33 percent, 25 percent and 10 percent of students respectively of class five were able to achieve required skill in mathematics.
According to the statistics of 2015, about 59 percent students of class three and 90 percent students of class five failed to achieve the required skill in Mathematics. And the majority of these weak students fall and cannot do well in achieving secondary education.