The female teachers teaching non-starter and drop-out Muslim girls in vertical group found teaching mathematics problematic.
Since the number of these bridge schools run by an NGO in Niwai block of Rajasthan is seven, and most teachers themselves have studied mathematics up to class X, a two-day residential training was held at the field office of the project holder NGO called Centre for Unfolding Learning Potentials in the second week of August.
The tool of 'number line' was used for training in to teach various number systems and mathematical operations, along with making charts and preparing worksheets. The intervention was meant to train teachers to understand concepts of mathematics by 'doing activities' with number-lines and filling observations in the worksheets to discern patterns.
Teachers created a good number of charts for display in classrooms to crate visual-rich classroom environment. Making own charts, explain charts and doing activities with charts and filling worksheets lead to understanding of mathematics by doing.
"A line with numbers placed in their correct position, which is useful for understanding mathematical operations different number systems and for showing relations between the numbers. It can work as a visual tool that relates numbers to positions and directions," stated the resource while explaining various number systems on the blackboard first followed by making charts and worksheets.
The female teachers found that with visual aid of number lines, they could understand mathematical concepts and operations which they had been using mechanically by following the rule method.
The intervention revealed that at upper primary level visuals and worksheets have the potential of making mathematics female friendly. Visual thinking and abstract thinking when combined properly in mathematics made the subject interesting for them.