Tuesday 27th October 2020.
Singing in the Silence
It’s a quiet day at Qhubeka Public Primary School in Intabazwe, Harrismith. The school is closed for a mid-term break. There is no hustle and bustle of youngsters on the dusty playgrounds. There are no teacups jangling in the staffroom amidst the hum of socially distanced conversation. But wait, what’s that? The silence is broken with the sound of a small group of singing children.
Math Clubs are Go!
Deep in the heart of the school there are feet tapping to the rhythm of a familiar TIMCA refrain:
“Nine and One are Number Bonds, Eight and Two are Friends, Seven and Three, Six and Four, Five and Five are Twins…”The Number Bonds Song
TIMCA Math Club facilitators Randy Tshabalala and Sbu Mphuthi have been waiting for this day for many months. Delayed in their quest by the COVID-19 pandemic, they are finally busy with their first Math Club in Intabazwe. The two local residents started their TIMCA journey in February 2020.
Training is Key
Initial training in Intabazwe was followed by a trip to the Friendly City of Port Elizabeth. Trainers Untu Baart and Abongile Bobo took them through their paces. Days after their return home the country went into lockdown, and their hopes were dashed.
Thanks to Qhubeka PPS
Level One COVID-19 restrictions meant that the dream of starting Math Clubs in Intabazwe could once again start to be realised. This could not happen without the cooperation and support from Principal Attie Tshabalala and HOD Mr Mbhele from Qhubeka PPS. The willingness of the school to embrace the Math Club programme and to nominate their Grade 6 scholars for the initiative is highly appreciated.
The twenty-five Grade 6 scholars from Qhubeka PPS have been split into 3 clubs, and today they are all learning about the number bonds song, Fizz-Pop and that Maths is Fun. These scholars will be part of TIMCA’s pilot programme in Intabazwe, which will stretch over 5 weeks, ending in November.
Bright future for the community
In the year ahead, TIMCA will be driving forward with facilitator education and the development of more clubs in the Harrismith area. The goal is to have a minimum of 240 learners and 10 facilitators in Math Clubs in the area by the end of 2021. These clubs will be run in the community, by the community, for the community.
TIMCA would also like to acknowledge a number of people, without which this Math Club launch would not have been possible. Firstly, our donors, who have a passion for development, Sam Twala, Chairman of the Harrismith Water Hero’s and community leader, Attie Tshabalala, Principal of Qhubeka PPS, and Ané de Witt, Proprietor of Shady Pines Guest House in Harrismith.
Regular updates on the progress of the clubs will be posted on our Website, www.TIMCA.org.