The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Sharon Haba, has challenged all stakeholders in the education sector to embrace innovation, for the sector to contribute meaningfully toward national development.
She said this at the launch of a fair for innovations in education, in the Northern Province, where teachers, youth groups, members of the community and leaders in the education sector exhibit their various innovations to promote education.
The fair started on Friday in Musanze with an exhibition of the 40 best innovations in the province.
“The quality of education has always been questionable and answers have been sought from policymakers, teachers and students. We are striving to improve it and I hope these innovations will bring part of the solution,” she said.
Eric Mushimiyimana, an English teacher at Groupe Scolaire Musasa in Burera District, said a tactic dubbed; “Play song to teach English” has helped to improve learners’ listening and reading skills in his school.
“I play a song and project its lyrics. Here students simultaneously learn how a word is spelt and the phonology.
This is a way I found interesting that makes learners acquire listening, reading, and writing skills in a quick and interesting way,” he said.
Jean d’Amour Manirakiza, who teaches entrepreneurship at the same school, said that it is better to focus on practicals rather than theory since learners do not easily forget what they practiced, which he says informed his introduction of a piggery for his class.
“As a teacher of entrepreneurship, I wanted my learners to have hands-on experience. I bought piglets for them, we made a draw and those who won the lottery got three pigs each. When the pigs produce, they pass on piglets to their classmates. This has helped them to understand the meaning of entrepreneurship in a practical way,” he explained.
Aimé Bosenibamwe, the Governor of the Northern Province, said innovations in education will help Rwanda to achieve her Vision 2020 goals.
“The government wants to build a stronger nation and education is key to this. We hope the innovations exhibited here and others to be exhibited in other fairs will contribute toward improving the quality of education,” he said.
New ideas being showcased in the fairs include using locally available materials to make learning tools, child centered teaching methods, interactive ICTs for classrooms, eco-schools, adapted classrooms that support children with special needs, among others.
After Musanze, the education fair will be held in Nyanza on March 30, Nyagatare on May 29, Karongi on June 26 and Kigali on July 9, according to a calendar from the ministry.