Kingsford Mradah loved to watch Animal Kingdom when he was younger, and loved the programme so much that he decided to become a medical or veterinary doctor. Even though he did not achieve that dream, he didn’t give up. He pursued another dream — teaching. This worked out for him, and he is now a teacher at the Assorku Essuma DA JHS where he teaches about two hundred and twenty students.
When he was a student, he found it difficult to understand some topics in Science because he had not been properly introduced to them in junior high school. This is one of the things that informs his teaching. He wants to teach the young generation science in such a way that “they will not face the same challenges I faced back in JHS and SHS.”
Explaining what he likes best about teaching STEM, Kingsford says that since science is about natural phenomena, by using various teaching and learning materials he is able to make the subject practical and interesting to his students. This makes understanding the world both simple and interesting to his students. It also helps him to clear misconceptions among his students which in turn helps them build their interest in the subject. Mr. Mradah says he benefits significantly from being a STEM educator because it broadens his horizons and allows him to enhance his knowledge.
Since Mr. Mradah started teaching five years ago, his happiest moment occurred when one of his former students, a young girl who was very serious with her studies, gained a scholarship to a category A senior high school. It showed him that if he trained his students well, they would grow to become great scientists in future wherever they find themselves.
Kingsford was informed of the JUNEOS Challenge by the district science coordinator who happens to be his past teacher. He brainstormed with his students and they settled on an experimental demonstration using only local materials.
As a teacher, the JUNEOS Challenge has made Kingsford realize that he has to use the common materials available in his surroundings to help students understand scientific concepts. He has also realized that there are many opportunities ahead so he and his students can excel if they take advantage of these opportunities. He advises his colleagues to make science lessons practical for students so they can disprove the notion that science is difficult.
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Article by Kofi Konadu Berko.
Kofi Konadu Berko is passionate about education and youth development. He holds a B.A in Adult Education and Human Resource Studies from the University Of Ghana. His works have been published in the historic Afroyoung Adult anthology titled Waterbirds On the Lakeshore, Adabraka: Stories From the Center Of the World, Tampered Press and the Kalahari Review. He blogs at obolokofi.wordpress.com