Meet GH4STEM 100 Top Teacher: JOHN OWUSU, Kumasi #GH4STEM

For Mr. John Owusu, who teaches STEM at Manna International School in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, his interest in STEM is inborn. As early as he can remember, he has had an interest in science and has been inspired by Dr. Frimpong Boateng, the Ghanaian physician and cardiothoracic surgeon who established the National Cardiothoracic Center.

After reading Chemistry at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, John took to teaching and has remained in the profession ever since. He has more than two years of professional teaching experience and teaches close to three hundred students at junior high school. He also has a few senior high school students. Although he has taught a considerable number of students, John always tries to establish a good and lasting relationship with each student. He is motivated by the feedback he gets from the parents of his students and draws inspiration from the many new things he learns while reading and researching. 

John got to know about the JUNEOS Challenge through his younger brother. He was inspired to pick it up and get his students involved, and he was happy with their excitement about the project. Their project was inspired by the lack of clean water in some rural areas and focused on the use of charcoal for water purification.

The JUNEOS Challenge made John appreciate the great potential of his students when given the platform to exhibit their skills and make use of acquired knowledge. He also learnt that he needed to be more creative when teaching STEM. He has also come to understand the critical importance of practical demonstrations in teaching. John feels that he has been challenged to improvise rather than complain about inadequate resources for experiments and practical studies. 

After participating in the entire process, John has also realised the importance of being a part of STEM-related organizations, and is happy to have found out that such organizations are open to all STEM educators and not only those in government schools. With this, one anticipates that John will shortly join one of these STEM organizations.

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Article by Elizabeth Johnson.

Elizabeth Johnson works as a researcher and project manager with Dr Monk and volunteers the rest of her time with the Writers Project of Ghana where she takes up various roles such as radio show production, social media management and administrator for their annual literary festival. She is a published writer who writes both fiction and nonfiction and has won awards for her work.