Mr. Dotse firmly believes that STEM is interesting involves lots of practical demonstrations which makes it enjoyable for students. He recalls that after he taught a class to use cylindrical objects to construct building foundations, some of his students asked for extra materials so they could carry on with these experiments on their own at home. Also, he recalls that after a practical session on electrical motors, one student came back the next day with a miniature electric motor he had made based on what he had learnt in class. Mr. Dotse describes these two events as his most inspiring experiences as an educator. It’s no coincidence that during the JUNEOS challenge his students’ experiment involved electrical motor.
But how did Mr Dotse become a teacher? Initially, he had wanted to be a pharmacist. His desire to become a teacher came later, but not without some resistance from his family, who did not agree with his career choice. In order to please his family, he studied Telecommunications Engineering at a polytechnic. However, he didn’t let his dream of becoming a teacher escape. He eventually persuaded his entire family of the benefits of being a teacher and then went ahead to pursue a degree in Education at the University of Education, Winneba. He has since been teaching for the past nine years, and this is the work he intends doing for the rest of his life. Currently, he has about 150 students. His efforts have been recognized in his district, and in 2013 and 2017, he won an award as the best ICT teacher runner up and winner respectively. Speaking about his profession, Mr Dotse has this to say: “What really motivates me is seeing the students I have taught becoming great and successful people in the society.”
Edem’s main aim as a STEM educator is to impart knowledge to his students and help them progress in all aspects of their science education. In his teaching model, he achieves this aim by drawing on past learning experiences and knowledge he has acquired from the various workshops he has attended. He is therefore able to give his students the foundation they require so they can build on it when they reach Senior High School.
Mr. Dotse learnt about the JUNEOS challenge from the Regional Science Coordinator. His immediate thought was to figure out an experiment which was not only unique and captivating but would also reflect what they learnt in class. Eventually, he settled on the transformation of energy. The experiment conducted by his students involved using electrical motors to demonstrate this concept. The JUNEOS challenge has generated a lot of interest among the students and the school science club membership has increased since then.
As a child, Edem admired Professor Miriam Ewurama Addy, former host of the National Maths and Science Quiz, which was and remains his favorite TV show. When it comes to music, which he enjoys, Mr. Dotse names Stonebwoy as a favourite due to his versatility.
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