MY MOST CHALLENGING EXPERIENCE
It is with great pleasure that i re-cap one of my most challenging experiences. This was during my years of teaching Mathematics in a challenging environment like ZAMANI COLLEGE KADUNA.
Following its trend in educational development of both staff and students, the college got its application to run the NCUK (Northern Consortium of UK Universities) foundation programme in 2010, with each of the following modules (Engineering, Sciences, Social Sciences and Business).
Interestingly, I trebled as both Mathematics teacher, and ICT Officer and Centre’s Academic Contact. The Mathematics module had a computer component, which required the use of Mathematical software like Derive 6, Maples, Mathematica or Mathlab. The simplest to use being Derive 6.
Just before the advent of NCUK programme, the physics department, being the most experienced in terms of exposure (represented the school in international competitions like IYPT, yearly). As a result of this, Mr Ekwenta deploy the use of multimedia in teaching. And owing to my desire to improve on my teaching methodology, I was troubled because i couldn’t use ICT and multimedia effectively. I resorted to sneaking around Mr Ekwenta regularly to see how i could deploy ICT and multimedia in teaching mathematics.
When as a result of NCUK, more responsibilities were vested on my shoulders, first to do online registration of the centre and then students followed with other registration requirements, including staff CV, coursework etc. Most importantly, the computer component in mathematics.
We scaled through these stages since we had other centres (OXBRIDGE COLLEGE LAGOS) in Nigeria running NCUK programmmes, through collaborated efforts.
However, the next academic year came with a bigger challenge. Our partners insisted that we use MS Excel to achieve the same task above. For many months I asked questions on how Excel could be used to solve simultaneous equations, calculus, quadratic equation, and motion related concepts in Physics. I had no one to turn to. Months passed by. I even got a reprimand from the office for failing to use what I don’t know anything about to teach.
Finally, a biology teacher i confided in put me through in Excel on what he had previously learned, just a few days back. This was the turning point. And so that Friday, after the close of work, I headed back home, recharged my Modem, surfed the internet more than I had previously surfed, and with God on my side, got materials that enabled me set the coursework. By Monday I had my coursework ready to be sent to UK for approval. It not only got approved, but earned me some level of recognition.