Taking the fear out of Maths – Vidya Ramdas has been teaching for 16 years
DPI, Guyana, Friday, October 5, 2018
Teaching is one of the most complicated jobs today, it demands a broad knowledge of subject matter, enthusiasm, a love for learning, knowledge of the discipline, classroom management, being a second parent to many and the desire to make a difference in the lives of young people. Even more complicated for some is the subject of Mathematics, which if it were not a requirement for most jobs would have been dropped entirely from their list of subjects.
Vidya Ramdas, who has been in the teaching profession for the past 16 years, is a veteran Mathematics Teacher. The 34-year-old is a rare find in a subject area dominated by males and is making headways helping students to understand mathematics and to develop their ability to formulate and solve problems in a wide variety of situations.
The trick, she says, is thinking way outside the box and making learning maths fun so that the love for the subject area can develop from within, much like she did growing up.
Her passion for Math started at the tender age of three when she would do sums on old cigarette packs in her father’s shop as was given to her by a regular customer who happened to be a Popular Math Teacher.
She recalls, being given “matchsticks” to count and simple additions to do. As she grew older, and with teachers such as Shawn Mc Bean, Michael Hackette and Kemuel Gafar, her passion was fully realized and there was no turning back. As time would tell the rest is history.
She explained that teaching was essentially not a natural choice as she did not choose it but rather it chose her.
The quiet and articulate young woman who teaches at the Central Corentyne Secondary School (CCSS), Bush Lot Village Corentyne Berbice said she was inspired to remain in the profession after she realized she has the opportunity to profoundly impact the lives of her students.
“I can make a difference with visible results; however small it may be. Teaching is not an easy job. Teaching Mathematics to students who don’t even like the subject test your emotional resolve, taxes your intellect and certainty humbles you. But there is no greater feeling than when you gain their trust and they are motivated to come every day to your classroom to learn what they once feared and despise”.
An important part of teaching for her is making learning fun and inspiring students to reach their full potential. The mother of two young boys and of Rose Hall Town added inspiring students is integral to ensuring their success.
“It is a wonderful feeling when students can understand and apply concepts. But it is personally fulfilling when former students tell me that they want to pursue a career in the field or study Mathematics”.
Apart from teaching at the Central Corentyne Secondary Secondary School, Vidya lectures part-time at the Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE), Tain. She is also a School-Based Assessment Monitor, a National Grade Six (NGSA) and Caribbean Secondary Entrance Certificate (CSEC) Marker, and provides part-time service to the University of Guyana Berbice Campus among many others.
Story and Image: Nafeeza Sakur