Going the Distance

Several teachers from Africa left the sights and sounds of the ivory coast and headed to our area in search of the perfect lesson plan. These teachers are hoping to gain a greater understanding of several core classes to help their students do well academically.

Lorraine Kruse is one of nine teachers visiting from Namibia, Africa. She and her colleagues are spending six weeks in Florida classrooms learning how math and science teachers prepare students to do well in those courses.

"Namibia is a young country and we have been independent for just 14 years. The students there struggle a lot with math and science as such the performance of students are usually poor in those areas," says Lorraine.

Kruse says American children have a lot of resources at their fingertips. In fact, computer labs are readily accessible, giving them an advantage most countries do not have.

These teachers say it's a privilege most American students don't seem to appreciate.

Ivy Munsu, a math and science teacher, says, "Learners take education for granted, They don't want to learn. It’s like they are being forced to come to school, so I think teachers and parents have to play a role to encourage learners to come to school."

Munsu and her colleagues are like students themselves, listening intently and writing down everything they believe will help their students excel.

Willibald Shoopala, also a math teacher, says, "I'm looking at the ways things are being presented here, At least I know how it will bring improvement in my classes. Sometimes I realize we are harsh to our students. We have to be learner friendly."

Valuable lessons he plans on sharing with colleagues and students back home.

Next week these teachers will head to Jefferson and Leon Counties observing math and science teachers.