Better facilities; productive learning; satisfactory results
– Brickdam Secondary School improving their learning environment to boost performance
DPI, Guyana, Thursday, September 12, 2019
Students and teachers of the Brickdam Secondary School are now boasting of the improvement to their Science Laboratory, following the relocation of the institution from Brickdam to East La Penitence.
The new laboratory is equipped with microscopes, Petri dishes, stools and several other science supplies and items which are utilised during classes.
Dedicated Science Teacher, Ansel Wilson, told the Department of Public Information (DPI) that compared to the previous Science Laboratory, the new room has adequate space which provides more opportunities for learning. He said the subject requires theoretical and experimental/practical lessons; both of which are successfully conducted in the same workroom.
Wilson highlighted that with the current lab, teachers can accommodate more students. This is in contrast to the previous workroom where, according to the science instructor, fewer practicals were completed and classwork had to be reduced, due to the lack of equipment and testing materials. “We could have only done the experiments that were necessary; however, now we have more chemicals to conduct a lot more analysis. Also, this class environment is way healthier. It is not as stuffy as the previous one, and they are several workstations – providing the pupils with enough space to function.”
The teacher believes that children are better able to function once the environment is conducive to learning; and with the new workroom, the performance of students and his teaching methods have improved tremendously.
According to the educator, his former Science students are a testimony of how improvement equipment and work environment can lead to better production, which in turn leads to satisfactory results. Wilson explained that the students excelled – obtaining Grades Ones and Twos.
“This very laboratory serves for Biology, Physics and Chemistry and we can conduct our activities right here… if for some reason, a student was absent from one of the classes or makes a mistake during their practical, we can repeat that the lesson.”
During a visit by the DPI team, the Grade 10 students were engaged in their class experiment – testing the occurrence of diffusion in liquid. According to the teacher, the method of teaching science has elevated to another level in Guyana. “What we are doing now is not only teaching students to get involved in pure science, but there has been an implementation of STEM… So, now it’s not the old way of thinking. Engineering among many other fields are attached to science,” he disclosed.
A fifth form student, Robin McKenzie, said “the first lab did not have as many tables and the teachers and students were more clustered back then. There is more space now to work and to put our equipment… I believe the quality of work would be better because there are more seating arrangements.”
Previously, the Ministry of Education, in keeping with the government’s push for the development of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM), had commissioned several science laboratories in several secondary schools throughout Guyana.
Among the institutions benefitting from the development were the Canje Secondary School, Vryman’s Erven Secondary School and the Berbice Educational Institute (BEI) in the East Berbice-Corentyne Region, all at the cost of $45M. Additionally, another laboratory was established at Woodley Park Secondary, at the cost of $14M.
Several other secondary schools are expected to be outfitted with similar facilities.