Maths300 in Cambodia

Lynne Ord
Ivanhoe Grammar School, Victoria

Through the International Baccalaureate Schools to Schools project, and in co-operation with four other partner schools, Ivanhoe Grammar teachers have been involved in Cambodia for several years. In 2008, Lynne and Dayle Van Zanten spent time working in province schools and teaching demonstration lessons for student teachers and classroom teachers. The aim of the project is to assist trainee teachers in preparing rich lessons and to move the education system away from text book teaching to engaged learning. Several of the problems used are the whole class investigation 'life' of a task as recorded in the equivalent Maths300 lesson.

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Heads & Legs, Task 14 and Maths300 Lesson 41
The children loved the activities. When we were sharing what they learned one student said that she learned to solve a problem using pictures; others learnt to graph for the first time. While the lessons were heavily modified to suit the nature of the schools and the design of the demonstration lessons they were still rich in the sense that the children were problem solving rather than rote learning sums.

We worked in four different schools in the Kandal Province of Cambodia - Prek Tapov, Krapeuha, Kampong Samnagn, Demonstration School and the Kandal Teacher Training College.

There is no electricity in any of the schools so the computer aspect certainly was not available or should I say sustainable once we left. However, the two teacher trainers, Soeun and Chanan, have access to the internet via internet cafes in Phnom Penh, so will be able to sustain the inspiration. The teacher trainers are starved of resources and Maths300 will be a way for them to access problem solving activities that will support the move from text book rote learning to investigative maths. They will access the web then use the lessons to train student teachers and mentor (class) teachers in their workshops.
Cat & Mouse, Task 223 and Maths300 Lesson 155

As I said, the children loved the activities and when a Year 3 student, who has been used to rote learning, says she learnt how to problem solve using pictures (after one lesson) you know the quality of the maths you are presenting. Thanks again to both yourself and Charles for developing these activities. I value them in my Year 6 class at Ivanhoe and they are now being valued in schools in Cambodia.

Billiard Ball Bounces, Maths300 Lesson 55.
Note the bilingual investigation guide.
(The colouring in is a bonus spatial exercise.)

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