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Play your part on International Earth Day

Today is International Earth Day and the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly given us all pause of thought. How can we make a difference to the Earth that is our only home? What can we do to help restore her? All members of the JumpStart team strive to contribute to sustainability efforts as much as possible. For the last year the world has rushed to online communication and education. This changed our lives beyond our wildest dreams, saving many air flights and other transportation costs. Undoubtedly, a positive benefit, but did you know that online technology has an environmental impact? This Euro News article emphasises the need for a holistic approach when evaluating our environmental impact. It features the Purdue University study that estimates that one videoconferencing hour “emits between 150 and 1000 grams of carbon dioxide. It also uses up to 12 litres of water and an area of land around the size of an […]

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Innovation & resilience at home

JumpStart recognised for Nedbank Private Wealth Innovation Awards

JumpStart’s organisational resilience and innovation was recognised this week by the Nedbank Private Wealth Innovation Awards naming us one of five finalists in both categories. The awards recognise organisations that adapted to thrive in the face of difficulties, inspiring others with their response to a shock, like the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other things, the adjudicators assessed our preparedness for crises, our response to the pandemic, as well as our learnings that can benefit other organisations. Our response to the crisis General Manager, Callen Hodgskiss, reflected on JumpStart’s approach: “Because our programmes takes place in the schools, we had to find a way to make home learning possible – especially as very few learners had any learning materials at home. Contacting them proved challenging! The first step was to reach out to peers and colleagues. NASCEE really helped with this. “It rapidly became clear that in hard lockdown, many learners would be difficult to reach. We […]

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Opening doors with Avela Tshatshu

Future teacher, Avela Tshatshu, is opening doors – for the young learners in her care and for her own career aspirations. Becoming a JumpStart tutor was a turning point that propelled her career in a direction she never previously imagined. The use of the JumpTrak app to mark and monitor the children in her classes awoke Avela’s curiosity. She wanted to learn more about apps, how they work and how they are developed and designed. She is fascinated by the JumpStart robotics and coding programmes that are being taught at intermediate phase in some schools. A fire has been lit inside Avela and her thirst for knowledge burns brightly. This talented youth tutor is passionate about teaching maths, consistent in her approach and brings compassion to the classes she teaches. Based at Isaac Mhlambi Primary School in Sasolburg, her primary focus is on the Grade 3 learners, but she works with earlier grades too.  Colleagues’ […]

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Hands up for education on Human Rights Day

On Human Rights Day we commemorate those who gave their lives for a democratic South Africa, and reflect on some of the challenges that educators, learners and parents face. We acknowledge the tutors, teachers and our programme staff who count amongst the so many who work to ensure that quality learning takes place in mathematics. Goal 4 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Agenda The JumpStart Foundation participates in the goal of promoting “education for all”, which is part of the Sustainable Development Goal 4. The Goal aims to: “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote life-long learning opportunities for all“.  Our work helps to ensure that all children in our programme are numerically competent by the time they complete Grade 3. This achievement improves the likelihood of their completing their secondary education, and empowers learners to contribute to the progress of the country as they experience meaningful work. What the experts say In a […]

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International Day of Mathematics with robotics and coding

Whether you call it Pi Day or International Day of Mathematics, maths fundis around the world let their hair down in celebration. In the third month, on the fourteenth day, and at the fifteenth hour the numbers align as 3.1415! Some folk celebrate quite literally, by eating “pies”. Pi (as represented by the lower-case Greek letter π) is one of the most well-known mathematical constants. It is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter – hence the choice of a nice round pie. Those with a tooth for maths can dig right in! Here in South Africa, the JumpStart Robotics & Coding team examines instead the circular wheel of a robot used to teach a love of mathematics. From Pi Day to International Day of Mathematics Back in 1988 the American physicist, Larry Shaw, organised a celebratory event at the San Francisco Exploratorium on this day, which also happens to be Albert Einstein’s […]

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