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Learning Maths Outside the Classroom - Coco Teaches African Children

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 17 July 2008 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 21 October 2010 by ncetm_administrator

Places of Worship and CharitiesPlaces of Worship and Charities

Coco Teaches African Children

The aim is to teach children a mathematical game whilst raising awareness of the African culture in a fun and stimulating way. At the same time COCO aims to raise awareness of COCO’s work and raise vital funds.COCO (Comrades of Children Oversees) funds projects worldwide that have a lasting impact on the lives of children in desperate need of help. Many of COCO’s projects are based in Africa, concentrating on education and healthcare initiatives to help give children a positive future.

 Click here to view the video clip of School workshop

The morning/afternoon will be spent doing a Maths games workshop for children using African games e.g. ‘Dara’, ‘Tsoro Yematatu’ and ‘Butterfly’. These games involve strategic thinking and problem solving skills and the game boards are based on geometric shapes.

 Click here to see details of the games

Other mathematical skills may be incorporated into the game such as multiplication, addition and subtraction, in terms of counting the geometric shapes in each game and also in adding up point scores. Children will each have a score card and will also comment on their observations i.e. which strategy they felt helped them to win.

The game will also have cultural references to children in Africa throughout the game and will demonstrate the importance of games in learning.  The game uses chalk for the game boards and brightly coloured marker saucers for the counters. Schools may wish to continue playing the game in future and may even wish to have the boards painted onto the playground. As a follow up lesson children may also want to invent their own games and learn more about Africa.

Coco Nursery School

Nursery School Refurbishment with the Massai, Tanzania 
Olomayani ('Blessings') Nursery School, in the Maasai village of Eluwai in Monduli District, was started in 2006 through the initiative of a group of villagers. It was initially established under the shade of a large tree at the Women's Cultural Centre in the village. Through the efforts of the group - with additional donations from the village chairman and local NGOs, two classrooms and a small staff room were built. The building was a simple timber-frame construction plastered with mud, and had a tin roof. The classrooms had no windows or doors, and no furniture other than five wooden benches and two lockable metal trunks for storing stationery.

COCO funded the refurbishment of the school so that all 40 pupils aged between four and seven years, can receive a better quality education and learn English and Swahili in preparation for Primary School. The nursery provides the only educational opportunity for this age group in the area, other than the reception class at the state-run village primary school (over an hour's walk away). All of the pupils are from Maasai pastoralist families, and live in traditional mud huts with grass roofs. The community came together last month to purchase the materials and start the improvements. Further information about the progress of this project will follow in future reports.

For further information and to book your workshop please email COCO’s Fundraising Manager Laura Jackson at laura@coco.org.uk.

Registered Children’s Charity No. SC030428
Tel: 0191 261 7427  
14 Blandford Square Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4HZ


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