April 2013 - Issue 1
THE MASTER EDITION Franchisees • Managers • Tutors
CONFERENCE 2013 Now and Beyond - Leaders of the Future
CONTENTS 3 A word from Johan 4 Getting down to Business 5 Project MeerKAT 6 Work Smarter, not Harder
8 The Spier Space Programme 9 Our Own Star Studded Evening 12 And the winner is . . .
13 The Power of Collaboration 14 Reaching for the Stars 16 Interdimentional Marketing 18 Celebrating failure Editor: Design & Layout:
Tamsin Haley Trish Van Driessche
7 10 5
Our National Conference for 2013 is done and dusted. May I again thank all who helped make the weekend what it was – presenters, participants, guests and attendees. It was an enjoyable and greatly informative event. Education in South Africa is a topic which is constantly in the news and is always being hotly debated on many different forums. The teaching and learning of mathematics and physical science are especially at the forefront of these discussions. We are receiving feedback from our centres that their newly enrolled Grade 10 learners are especially weak, and that their level of capability seems to be deteriorating every year. With this being the case, it is becoming increasingly difficult to improve the abilities of these learners to a standard that is acceptable. This is of great concern since this is just the beginning of their senior years in high school. One message came through like a golden thread at our conference, and was brought up by speaker after speaker: we can not make miracles happen if we do not have the time available to do our magic. I would again like to urge you not to make false promises to parents. The Grade 10 Mathematics Curriculum in particular is massive, and it is very large step up from Grade 9. Do not enrol learners for two or three hours per week if they are already struggling. This is unfair to the learners, their parents and to your fellow franchisees. If you do not have sufficient time to work with these learners – to get them up to a reasonable level – you should rather not enrol them at all. Good luck with your endeavours in 2013. Make us proud…
MASTER MATHS BURSARY SCHEME I would again like to thank you for the excellent spirit in which you have accepted the proposal for our new bursary scheme. Although the methodology is very clear from the documentation which we provided, we did not discuss the practical implications in much detail. I would like to make use of this opportunity to elaborate a little on this. I would suggest that we go about it in the following way: In 2013 - award bursaries to one Grade 10, one Grade 11 and one Grade 12 learner in mathematics. Although you will not have had a lot of time available with this year’s Grade 12’s – I am confident that you will be successful. Your success will be dependant on the fact that you choose candidates with potential and the willingness to work. This will enable us to make an immediate difference at Grade 12 level – even though their results may not be as good as if you had had them from Grade 10. In 2014, you can again select one Grade 10 learner. You will again have one learner at each of these three levels. We can now expect even better results from the 2014 Grade 12 class. We have the infrastructure and the ability to make a huge difference in the education of mathematics and physical science. We also know that our services are out of the reach of the learners from disadvantaged communities in South Africa. Having a formal bursary scheme, enables us to go a long way towards helping our communities and making our services more widely available. In the long run we will also build up a solid record of the successes that we have achieved (which can even be audited to show this) with such minimal resources. It is what we need to encourage the likes of Anglo and Sanlam to join with us, to help expand this scheme to a bigger, more sustainable level. They are very willing to invest in the disadvantaged communities, especially for maths and science, but they want to see results! Just imagine the magnitude of what this project can achieve if we can get the financial backing of the big corporates!!
Getting down to business. . . A basic model of how to run a centre by Adrie Schoeman
Every Franchisee/Manager in a Master Maths and Science centre carries the title of Operations Manager. A business is an operation and there are certain basic components that make up an operation. Unless we understand this, we will never be able to run a successful operation/business. In fact, we may not realise this, but we are Operations Managers on various levels. Think of your own household. Without basic operational procedures there would be absolute chaos. Your mother was probably the first Operations Manager you met!
Inputs Franchisee agreement Finances Premises Furniture & Equipment Staff Product
(positive and negative) Learners Parents Tutors Teachers Principles Managers 4
The goal of our workshop on the 9th of February was firstly to remind ourselves of these basic principles that exist in a well managed Master Maths and Science business, then to get an understanding of how the various components affect the ultimate goals and outputs of our business. We started off by explaining this process with a very simplified box-diagram of the systems/processes of a business. We took a look at a wine producing business, Zevenwacht, as an example. Although this is a production business, the basic principles do not differ from a service related industry. The inputs may be slightly different, but at the end of the day the systems or processes (and how well we follow them) will have a vital influence on our outputs. We discussed the inputs needed in our business; then saw how the inputs were applied in systems/processes, where value is added. Finally, there are outputs that aim to satisfy the customersâ€™ and owners needs. Like any other business, if these components are not working properly, there will be consequences for the business as a whole. We, as business owners, need to understand how these systems and processes work so that we know where to look if our outputs are not satisfying our needs. If a process or system is not working as it should, you as an owner must make changes! Understanding these basic principles means we know what to do, when to do it, as well as who will do it. The systems or processes we have in Master Maths and Science are your best friends â€“ they will help us to maintain good standards and focus your efforts on reaching our outputs and goals. The reference for this article comes from GrĂźtter, A. 2012, Module 10: Operations strategy and lean thinking. Get Smarter Management Studies.
Evaluate the outputs to generate feedback
Processes Legalities around staff Training of staff Admin processes Tutoring processes Marketing & advertising processes Interaction with Head Office Use systems/processes to satisfy customer needs
Make changes as needed to improve your inputs and processes
Enter the inputs into the systems/processes
Outputs Better results Satisfied customer Successful profitable business Personal success Integration of learner into the programme
The aim of SKA and the KAT-7 initiative
Dr Nadeem Ozeer, from Project MeerKAT, enlightened Master Maths delegates at their recent conference about the significance of MeerKAT as part of the greater Square Kilometer Array (SKA) project. His discussion covered the work that is taking place in the Karoo, as well as a brief history of the development and use of radio telescopes. With the SKA, astronomers are aiming to build the largest radio telescope in the world. Radio astronomy is a key tool for us to understand how the universe functions and even how it was formed. Radio telescopes work by measuring the electromagnetic radiation emitted from stellar bodies. This offers several advantages over optical telescopes: they can be used during the day, when dusty or cloudy, in fact as long as there is power and people they can be active. They are far cheaper to produce and operate and they can even detect radiation from objects that are obscured by other objects - which optical telescopes can not.
Dr Nadeem Oozer
While 40% of the SKA will be based in Australia and 60% in Africa, with South Africa getting the lionâ€™s share of this, significant investments are being made throughout Africa. This involves transforming old satellite dishes into radio telescopes, to encourage the development of radio astronomy throughout the continent. Community development is very important to the SKA team, who often work with learners from the communities around the array, where they explain the aims of the project and what they hope to achieve. They try to instill a love of mathematics and science in the learners through simple experiments such as building a basic radio. This amazing project has already resulted in huge infrastructure and skills investments in South Africa. Now itâ€™s up to us to ensure that the next generation of radio astronomers, sitting in our Master Maths centres, are instilled with a love and passion for mathematics and science, so that they can further the work already accomplished at the SKA.
Work Smarter, not Harder A look at how we use the tools of Master Maths
by Paul de Villiers
A Franchisee’s experience of our business is sometimes limited to their centre, or the area in which they operate. For the past year the Operations Department at Head Office has been visting many different centres around the country to see how they function. These visits identified pockets of excellence, but also identified areas where improvements could be made. During our visits we observed best practices, and noted how they are used to run a successful centre. Against this backdrop, we want to investigate how we can “work smarter and not harder”. A good business aims to fulfil a need that consumers might have. Consumers on the other hand, must decide which needs to satisfy. It is the consumer’s power of choice that forces businesses to produce high quality products and services. If a business is able to do this, the consumer may feel that this business can fulfil their needs. The outputs of a business are influenced by the quality of the inputs, and the effectiveness of the systems employed. Inputs can be seen as tools and these tools are designed to perform specific tasks. Think of a circular saw. This is clearly a very powerful tool, which improves productivity greatly, but is also dangerous if used incorrectly. So tools can help us to work smarter and not harder, if used correctly.
Tool Number 1 - The Master Maths System Businesses work in essentially the same way, where good products are designed to fulfil a need. To get the best out of any product, we have to use it according to the instructions laid out by its manufacturer. As Franchisees we are using a product, developed by the Franchisor, that has been designed to do a specific job. So how should it be used? An interview with Peter Prentice and Heidi Schoute-Vanneck was conducted to help Franchisees get insight into the design and intended use of the Master Maths and Master Science products. The following came out of the interview: The main principles behind the design of our system are to make the learner active in the learning process and to help develop a learner who can think independently. It was designed to teach the content of the South African curriculum to the learner, with reinforcement throughout the process. To accomplish all these principles, the programme consists of different components, put together in a very specific way, ensuring that our learners can achieve success. Some of these components include: the teaching Modules (our primary teaching tool), the printed notes and worksheets (which reinforce concepts through written work), Module summaries (for fast track revision), and the “How to” questions (which reinforce and check understanding of the Module). The Master Maths programme also has additional revision programmes and the grade plan/record sheet. When asked “what would happen if a franchisee only used some components?”, Peter Prentice said it would be like driving a car with flat tires. You may be able to drive the car, but you won’t get very far. Other questions asked were: “Can the system be used without a tutor?” Simply put, no. The tutor is there to provide extra clarification and a more mature perspective on whether the teaching goal has been achieved. If the goal has not been achieved, the tutor’s role is to facilitate the process of correcting the learner’s understanding. What is the tutor’s role in the Master Maths system? Their role is to encourage and reinforce the learner’s understanding of the subject, with an attitude that is positive and enthusiastic. Franchisees were encouraged to use the Master Maths system in accordance with the designer’s instructions, to achieve the best results.
Tool Number 2 - Selling of hours The Zevenwacht video, used in Adrie’s presentation, showed that it takes time to mature a good wine. Too little time and the wine doesn’t taste nice, too much time and it doesn’t get to the market on schedule. Either way the final product is impacted, along with the consumer’s experience with this business. We also need time with the learners enrolled in our centres, in order to produce results. The number of available hours you have with a learner has a dramatic impact on the results you can achieve. Selling enough hours helps you to obtain the time needed with each learner, in order to produce the desired results. It has become evident that many centres do not sell enough hours, and then find themselves in a position where it is extremely difficult to help their clients achieve results. We all understand that time is needed to get through the syllabus. We have seen that the basic comprehension learners have of maths is weaker (at time of enrolment) than it was in the past. Learners require more time to get them back to a desired level of performance. Why then is it so difficult to sell the hours that these learners need? Franchisees may fall into the trap of making decisions for our clients. We recognize that our service is desperately needed, and accordingly try to make our service available to everyone. We need to remember that this is not possible. It is dangerous to undercharge for our service. Eskom is an example of what happens when an organization gets their pricing wrong. They charged too little for electricity, which resulted in them not being able to build reserves for their future expansion. ‘There is no such thing as a free lunch’. Discounting fees is like using future income to help subsidize current learners. You could well be left without the ability to expand and improve your business due to a lack of resources. Another reason why we don’t sell enough hours is because we are limited by our own frame of reference. We might have the perception that the area we live in is a poor community, and we feel guilty for charging the amounts that we do. But other businesses, such as fast food outlets, still operate very effectively in these so called ‘poor communities’. They do not discount their prices to suit the consumer. The consumer is left with the choice of whether or not to purchase items at these stores. There is a very important question we should ask ourselves: do we have a short-term or long-term view of the lifespan of our centres? Having a long-term view will mean doing what is necessary now in order to ensure the viability of our business into the future. If we only focus on day to day issues, we might lose track of what we need to achieve in the long run. Mike from Cleary Park successfully implemented a change in selling hours at his centre last year. Mike explained that by simply selling more hours to current clients, he managed to grow his turnover by nearly 50% in 2012 and his clients’ results improved. Initially he was very sceptical, but was later amazed by how easily these clients (whose children needed it) were convinced to enrol for more hours. Mike said he was motivated to continue trying to increase his average fee per learner. You can achieve this too. Just keep our main objective in mind – to produce results.
Tool Number 3 - Staff The kind of staff employed at a centre differs from centre to centre – part-time staff only, just full-time staff or a combination of the two options. At the end of Paul’s talk, delegates were given an opportunity to debate the suitability of different staff members. Where did you stand on the debate? We hope this got you thinking about the use of staff in your business. There is one aspect that is critical to your business: YOU, the Franchisee. You control all the aspects of your own business, the inputs, the systems and inevitably, the outputs. If a parent is unhappy, you will be the person most likely to hear about it. It is the Franchisee, who ultimately drives the results the business will deliver.
Characteristics of a good tutor • Professionalism (preparation and planning included)
• Sound maths and science knowledge • Commitment and passion • Reliability and consistency • Knowledge of the maths and science modules in the Master Maths and Science system
• Punctuality The future
• Friendliness and communication skills
Your business is an asset. By not applying the tools correctly you will erode the future value of your business. Spending future income now, by discounting your fees, is devaluing your business… Your Franchisor is going to continue giving the lead, the question is: are you as an Franchisee going to follow that lead? Are you going to work smarter and not harder?
• Willingness to learn
WELCOME TO THE FUTURE!
• Have a good teaching method • Good personal hygiene and grooming • Organised and proactive • Attentive and perceptive 7
The Spier Space Programme The beginning of a great weekend 8 February signalled the beginning of the 2013 Master Maths and Master Science National Conference. Franchisees from all over South Africa, and several from beyond our borders, descended upon Spier Wine Farm, just outside Stellenbosch, for the weekend. Their objective? To celebrate the great successes that have been achieved over the last two years, to learn from each other, and to be exposed to new and innovative ideas. Thank you to everyone who was present at the National Conference, for participating throughout, and for making our â€œSpaceâ€? themed weekend an enormous success. The number of centres in Southern Africa has increased dramatically, but whether old or new, our centres make sure that the Master Maths name is held high at all times. We are still able to add to our competitive advantage after thirty-six years in business, and will continue to do this for the next 360 years at least! It was fantastic to start the conference off on Friday night with a braai. We took the opportunity to see old friends, make many new ones and to have a ball of a time! Laughter and chatting could be heard over the hotel lawns and vineyards.
The stu n lawns & ning rolling resta the Spie urant of r Hotel
Diann (Boks e Downing bur by the g) relaxing hotel pool
Christina Beyers (Vanderbijlpark) looks happy to be at the conference
The ladies posing for a picture: Justine Bester (Mondeor), Anita Kotze (Lambton), Shivonn Cunha (Glenanda) and Melanie Bedworth (Meyersdal)
Peter Prentice (Head Office) & Pieter Henning (Somerset West) having a good catch up session
us sm ) a r f a E hclif sun ss Te (Nort the ing joy en
Big thanks to Carol Marneweck for the use of some of her photos!
Our Own Star-Studded evening Dressed up and with somewhere to go, everyone was ready to celebrate the past two years’ wonderful achievements
Paul & Kim de Villiers (Witbank) having a relaxing evening after Paul’s workshop in the afternoon.
Looking beautiful! Sylvia Mukwevho (Makhado) and Zanele Masuku (Manzini) are dressed for success.
Maths and Science standing back to back! Pieter Henning & Stephan de Villiers (Somerset West)
These ladies are enjoying each others company. Tessa Erasmus (Northcliff) and Amanda de Villiers (Kempton Park) having fun with the photo props.
From Left: Bettie van Straten (Silver Lakes), Hermine Loots (Rustenburg), and Sorita Groenewald (Silver Lakes).
The Rössing & Phalaborwa foundation men strike a pose.
Celeste Seeger (Arcadia) & Helen Kriek (Moreletapark) having some fun. Adrie awarded Marius Nel (Worcester) the “Best Dressed” title of the evening. Seems Anelma du Plooy (George), Theonette Carstens (Head Office) and Chantal Goodlet (Bloemfontein) agree!
Kobus Meyer (Bredasdorp) and Rika Potgieter (Clanwilliam) taking a photo opportunity together.
Our gala evening took place on the Saturday evening of the conference. The venue was stunningly done up, and had a definite space theme! The tables were wonderfully bright, and the flower arrangements on the tabless in the shape of balls, truly looked like they could be floating in space. Our entertainment for the evening was two-fold. First up was our MC, Larry Soffer the mentalist, who showed us some amazing magic. This included the trick of transferring Johan’s jacket to Larry’s lovely assistant’s shoulders, while she was tied up.
The second half of our entertainment was provided by Night & Day, the dynamic duo who would have loved to have kept us all dancing late into the night. The main focus of the gala evening was the awards ceremony. A huge congratulations to everyone who walked away with a certificate, and to our three top franchises of the year.
Ebrahim & Razina Salie (Athlone, Mitchells Plain, Pinelands & Claremont) pose for a beautiful shot.
Powel Mohapi & Senate Letsie (Maseru) look the business in those hats!
It’s all big smiles with Edumisa Mtoli (Mthatha) and Lynn Glover (East London) in the photo booth!
Neil Parker (Florida) stopped for a picture with all the ladies.
Accompanying him is Lee-Ann Chain (Kensington), Kaitlin David (Rosebank), Colleen Hogan (Rosebank) & Soraya Hoosain (Chatsworth) André Oosthuizen (Aliwal North) giving us a quick reminder that we are at the Spier Conference Venue. Seen here with Debbie & Jan du Plessis (Jeffreys Bay) & Annel Oosthuizen (Oranje Meisiesskool).
This picture was a contender for the “How many people we can fit in a photo” category.
Edison & Rutendo Nyamayaro (Bela-Bela) representing well for the Limpopo Franchises.
Namibia showing everyone their fun side.
From Left: André & Iona van der Merwe (Windhoek), Anja Volkmann (Swakopmund) & Elthea van Rooyen (Walvis Bay).
The Springs team enjoying the gala dinner. From Left: Bianca van Aswegen, Grant & Selene de Villiers.
Jani van der Pol (Sandringham) and the ladies from Vanderbijlpark, Christina Beyers & Odette Venter are getting rather spacy!
Some of the Western Cape Franchisees enjoying a photo opportunity. From Left: Yolanda van Niekerk (Wellington), Hannes Anderson (Kuilsriver) and Liezel Retief (Parow).
Reshoketswe Phala (Secunda) looking stunning with her award. Jacob Thobejane (Phalaborwa) showing her his support. Hereâ€™s a photo that shows off some great smiles! From Left: Yvonne Thiebault (Ladysmith), Marici Hendrikse (Newcastle) and Barbara Southey (Kloof).
The Vanderbijlpark ladies, Christina Beyers and Odette Venter, going to town in the booth.
Gregg & Judy Connellan (Durban) are looking chuffed with their award.
That, and they really got into the space theme!
Elizabeth Simoncelli (Benoni) and Dianne Downing (Boksburg) all dressed for the gala dinner.
And the winner is . . .
A big congratulations to all of our winners for our Franchisee awards this year. It is fantastic to see everyone’s hard work paying off!
Grand Prize Winner Kathu
Category A Franchisee of the year Sandringham
In recognition of excellence
Lesley-Ann Wienand SANDRINGHAM
Represented here by: Jani van der Pol
Edenvale Claremont Witbank Sandringham Somerset West Westville Glenanda
Margie Thomson Razina & Ebrahim Salie Paul & Kim de Villiers Lesley-Ann Wienand Adrie Schoeman Melissa Wang Shivonn Cunha & Carol Marneweck
Category B Franchisee of the year Kathu
In recognition of excellence Kathu Oranje Meisies Hoër Kroonstad Durban Mitchells Plain Northcliff
Karina Reitz KATHU
Karina Reitz Annel Oosthuizen & Carien James Rinie Dreyer Greg & Judy Connellan Ebrahim & Razina Salie Tessa Erasmus
Category C Franchisee of the year Witrivier
and Grand Prize Winner
In recognition of excellence Silver Lakes Meyerspark Bryanston Witrivier Fish Hoek Secunda Jeffrey’s Bay Kuruman
Betty van Straten & Sorita Groenewald Joan Jones Jerry Bouwer Louna Stevens Andrew & Tania Luck Reshoketswe Phala Jan & Debbie du Plessis Annette Ludwick
20 years of Service 20 years of service is no small achievement, and the commitment, time and effort that goes into keeping your centre running does not go unnoticed. Thank you for everything you have put into your centres. These Franchisees were presented with gift watches, to commemorate their years of dedication to Master Maths. Category
Louna Stevens WITRIVIER
Edgemead - Derek Farley • Durban - Judy Connellan King Williams Town - Michelle Schreiber Grahamstown - Tammy Johnson Athlone - Razina Salie • Athlone - Ebrahim Salie
The Power of Collaboration Master Maths embarked on a project with the University of the Free State in 2012. What was it all about, and how well has it done?
Hercules Dreyer, from the University of the Free State joined the conference weekend to share more details about the current project. This project, the School Change Project, involves some 18 schools in the vicinity of the University. Schools had to apply, and teachers committed themselves to attending workshops, if they wanted to be considered for participation. Only the poorest performing schools in the region, mostly from the Motheo district, were picked for intervention. The focus of this specific project is to increase mathematics pass rates at schools, as well as the number of university exemptions. The University facilitated workshops, mentoring both the teachers and management teams from the schools. Periodic visits to the schools were also performed to help motivate and guide both learners and teachers. A large area of focus was preparing Grade 12 learners for their final examination and results are looking very promising thus far. There were a few challenges with this project, the main one being poverty. The schools involved face many different problems, which range from having more teachers than classrooms (creating a logistics problem), to a shortage of chairs and desks. Another limitation is the lack of skills to enable learners to use technology, especially computers, to enhance their learning experience. This is where Master Maths comes in! We donated 20 laptops, with no cost for the Master Maths license, to these schools. We also assisted with the training process during January 2012, and each subsequent school vacation, to make sure that the teachers knew how to use our programme efficiently, and had guidance on which modules to use in the next term. Our system is being used at these schools in different ways. Some teachers are using the laptops to prepare their lessons at home, some use it both at home and in the classroom, and others use it extensively in the classroom. Grade 10 and 11 teachers are making the most intensive use of the computers. Laptops are also being used to train up first time grade 10 teachers, or the FET teacher with the least experience. The project has done well during its inaugural year. During 2013, the objective is to have 3 laptops at each of the schools participating in the project, and to make sure that each FET grade has a computer for their teachers to use. The project is currently planned for 3 years, but there is a possibility that it may be extended. There is a possibility for duplication in other areas of the Free State, as well as in some of the other provinces. We will see what the future holds!
Reaching for the Stars It has been a year since Master Science was launched, but what has changed in that time?
by Heidi Schoute-Vanneck This is the first gathering of Franchisees since the launch of the new Master Science program in 2011. Thus, it is appropriate to emphasise some of the points made then, and to clarify some of the issues which have risen since.
Rounding in Calculations: Rounding in calculations is a topic which needs to be reiterated; the statement to "round numerical answers to 2 decimal places" appears in the instructions of past final exam papers. There is nothing in the current CAPS curriculum which contradicts this, so it is assumed to apply to the new curriculum too. This means that unless told otherwise, when there are more than 3 decimal places showing on your calculator, your answer should be rounded to 2 decimal places; "trailing" zeros should not be added. A second point of frustration for the learners has been when they get slightly different numerical values, usually due to rounding within calculations. Here are some tips to minimise frustration: • don't do long calculations in sections – use the memory function found on your calculator (esp. with Coulomb's Law and Newton's Law of Gravitation equations).
• don't round off intermediate calculations – use the given value on your calculator (e.g. if given
mass of solute and volume of solution and asked to calculate concentration don't round off the value of the number of moles).
• give final answer to 2 decimal places, unless told otherwise. CAPS Curriculum: The new "CAPS" curriculum, which has been in use for 2012 for Grade 10 learners, comes into effect for Grade 11 learners in 2013. It is an exponential improvement on the previous ("NCS") curriculum, none the less there are a few uncertainties surrounding it, and both tutors and learners are going to need to be flexible until we have confirmation from Department of Basic Education on a few points. Three queries surround the Periodic Table. The first is the accuracy of the relative atomic masses. The CAPS document stipulates "to at least 1 decimal place", the Periodic Table they provide has some values to 1 decimal place and some to 2 decimal places; from a teaching point of view this is insignificant, but to change every calculation on the system would be a massive drain of time from the further development of the program. For this reason we have kept the old Periodic Table values for now (integer values except for chlorine & copper), until we see what will be used in the exemplar paper. The other 2 are that the Periodic Table apparently won't include electronegativity values, but will show the classification of elements into the metals, metalloids and non-metals groups. There are several altered forms of equations, and symbol changes apparently coming into effect; until we have a datasheet we cannot be sure which form these will take.
Examples of symbol changes . . .
µk = F=
fk becomes fk = µkN N
Gm1m2 Gm1m2 becomes F = 2 d2 r
Fg = mg becomes W = mg (but also W = F∆xcosθ (G12), i.e. “W” is apparently used to mean both “weight” AND “work”; I consider this extremely unlikely)
nisinθi = nr sinθr becomes n1sinθ1 = n2sinθ 2 14
There have been significant content changes with some topics being moved between the grades, and others removed completely from the curriculum. The table below summarises the changes to the Grade 11 curriculum.
Waves, sound & light
longit. waves, ultrasound, pitch & loudness
moved to G10
moved to G12
moved to G10
Huygens’ Principle & single slit diffraction
added from G12
Elec & Mag Coulomb’s Law
electric potential energy (including lightning)
moved to G12
% yield & % purity
added into G11 modules
added from G10
motion of charged particle in
networks of combinations of and ⊥ resistors
moved to G12
no significant changes
move to G12
The only modules in the update which are new to the system are SI070, which follows logically from SI020, and will be quick to assimilate and SI076 which is completely new work and will need to be done thoroughly by your tutors before being given to learners. Final Exam 2013: This year's Grade 12 exam will be based on the "old" curriculum; i.e. this year's Grade 12s will need access to last years Grade 11 material. All the modules are still available on the system, although some have been split; notes and worksheets can be found in General stationery (science)\Printed material\G12 English\G11 2012 books (similarly for Afrikaans). (Subsequent to the conference, Bevan has agreed to print the old Grade 11 books only by request, see memo 2013/05MG for details.) Physical Science Textbooks: If you need a textbook to supplement the one your learners use at school, I recommend the Study & Master series or the Everything Science series (from the Shuttleworth Foundation). The Everything Science website (www.everythingscience.co.za) is outstanding and provides access to both the old and the new curriculum books in both electronic and hardcopy formats. Feedback: Feedback on the errors found in modules and printed materials, and on teaching topics which are unclear or differ from what learners are being taught in class, is essential to providing a top quality product, and making it relevant and interesting to our learners. Thank you to everyone who has communicated these issues to me, please continue to send your suggestions by email. Exam Memos: At the end of this year I will need Science tutors to answer selected questions from the final exam papers. This is an essential part of the learning curve which will allow you and your tutors to check that you are advocating correct methodology in written answers, and to improve your understanding of how examiners think. A memo with more information will follow.
Interdimentional Marketing Building a stronger brand
by Marius Myburg Modern communication channels have changed the way people interact. We cannot go five minutes without our phones buzzing due to a text message, email or instant message. We are so addicted to social media that we experience violent neck spasms if we do not browse through Facebook at least 54 times a day. We are drowning in information, and we love it! We crave it! And what is more, we want to share it all! From the pictures of our painted toenails, to what our adorable new puppy did and, of course the name of the company who never returned our call! As a result, this has changed the way we market our products and services. In the past, companies would convey a message to their target market via advertising channels, you would buy the product, and if you liked it, you would tell your friends and family. If you did not like it, you would tell a few people and use something else. This meant that companies could get away with murder. But luckily the tides have turned. Companies who offer true value will be rewarded, and those who do not, will not survive.
Brand Identity vs. Brand Image Modern communication empowers everyone to market any product or service to the whole country, or even the world. If you have something to say, you have a voice, be it Twitter, Facebook, websites, forums, radio talk shows, and so on. What is more, we place far more value in what our family and friends say about something than what a company states in their advertisements. How do we use this connected society phenomenon to our own advantage? How do we harness the unbelievable power of modern communication? We make sure, for instance, that when Master Maths clients tell their friends something about us, that it is the same message that we communicate through our websites and advertisements. To state this more formally, you want to bring your Brand Identity in line with your Brand Image. Let us look at those two terms: Brand Identity: Think of it as a company’s ID document. This is what we look like on paper. The brand image is created by all the marketing messages that a company sends out. This includes advertising messages, promises of a certain level of service, the promise that the product will work, and so forth. A company, for the most part, has complete control at the moment when the brand identity is communicated. Brand Image: Think of this as the impression you get when you meet someone for the first time. After you have met this person you might say to your friend: ‘he was nice’, or ‘he had terrible breath, I don’t want to talk to him again’. The brand image is the actual view the public has of your brand i.e. what they say to each other about your company. A company has no direct control at the moment when the brand image is communicated (you are not present when people are discussing your brand). Let us look at a hypothetical situation: a company can portray a fresh, wonderful brand identity by airing interesting television ads, publishing a beautiful website or promising that their product will last for 25 years. After receiving this message, people will rush out to buy the product. They might find that it does not look like the one in the ads, and it breaks after two weeks. In this case, the brand identity is completely different from the brand image. This company might make many sales in the beginning, but they almost certainly won’t last. So, how do you bring the brand identity in line with the brand image? You actively manage the most important brand contact points. These contact points are defined as anywhere that the public comes into contact with your brand. In a recent study we have isolated 87 important Master Maths contact points. There are too many to list here, but some examples are our websites, phone calls to centres, client meeting space in the centre, tutors, results etc. Just think of anywhere that someone might come into contact with the name Master Maths, and you will notice the list of contact points will suddenly become quite long. If a modern company wants to be successful they need a management plan for each of their important contact points. This plan should include a rating system, and a roadmap on how to improve each and every contact point to an acceptable level. Take phone call messages as a contact point. We can rate the current state of this contact point by calling every centre to check if they have a proper answering service. Then we put measures in place to ensure that all centres have an answering machine by the end of the year. When a contact point is at an acceptable level, every effort should be made to keep it there.
If you can manage to get you rating for all your contact points to a satisfactory level, there will be a very good chance that your brand identity will be the same as your brand image. For instance, our website states that clients can phone centres for information, and the fact that the centre called them back (after they left a message) completes this contact point. At this stage, your company is coming close to having that unassailable trump card: sustainable competitive advantage.
Sustainable competitive advantage Let us look at the definition: A sustainable competitive advantage is created by value-adding products, processes and services that cannot be matched by competitors, and maintaining that position as you grow (Business Insider). There are a few theories on how to achieve this elusive advantage, but the following one is favoured by academics. It states that it can be created by:
A strong brand. Instantly recognisable by the characteristics it portrays. McDonalds’ tastes the same and gives the same level of service from Japan to Peru.
Having a patent. More relevant to pharmaceutical or high tech companies.
Having a monopoly. Very difficult to maintain in a free market economy. Many large companies have been lulled into thinking they will stay on top forever, only to find a competitor “out-branding” them (for instance Apple’s recent dominance over Nokia).
Minimizing switching. People are generally too busy or lazy to look for many product alternatives. Once they have found something that works they generally stick to it. Additionally once they found something to be easily accessible they will usually go with that choice. Getting consumers to change brands after they have been using it for some time is far more expensive than gaining non-aligned clients.
Successful business practices. Running of your business should be profitable in the long run. You must provide a true value added service for the market. In our case, good learner results ensures long term business prosperity.
Contact point Contact point Contact point
Sustainable Competitive Advantage
Having a good product helps, but it does not ensure a sustainable competitive advantage. Any product or service can be copied or improved on over time, it is only the additional aspects of the company that can help it prosper and survive unstable economic times. As you can see, by bringing our brand identity closer to our brand image we will create a strong image, minimise switching and implement successful business practices. Through managing our contact points we can create a sustainable competitive advantage.
Contact point Contact point Contact point
The Master Maths and Master Science Brands The strength of our brand, and the tendency for consumers to switch between services, is governed by the quality of the interaction between us and our (potential and current) clients i.e. all contact points with the brand. We cannot dream to reach a sustainable competitive advantage if our brand identity is not aligned to our brand image. Luckily you have a dedicated team at head office that will ensure that this happens. Our centres already give exceptional service, but there are many contact points that still need work and new contact points are appearing regularly. Optimising all these points is a mammoth task and will take many years to complete. However, with your help, we will reach our goal of sustainable competitive advantage and long term prosperity. At this point we will be an unstoppable force. Competitors can copy our system, but they will never be able to compete with our professionalism and quality of service. We are already at a superb level, but to be the best we need to be at 100%. Together we will establish Master Maths and Master Science as the mature, sustainable brand it rightfully should be.
Celebrating failure A different way of looking at teaching by Peter Prentice An oxymoron, in English, is a figure of speech that combines contradictory terms. The title above (Celebrating Failure), strange as it may seem, is another example of an oxymoron. A few oxymorons have become clichés, such as “bitter sweet” and “deafening silence”. People learn from their mistakes. This is another oxymoron, yet it is very relevant when it comes to learning mathematics, because there are many opportunities for mistakes to be made. The natural response when most people make mistakes, is to think that they are stupid or to give up. However, if one sees this as an opportunity to learn something, then it is in fact something to be welcomed. For example: Simplify 2a + 3a(5 – c) The learner gives the following answer: 5a(5 – c) = 25a – 5ac You could view this as an opportunity to remind the learner about BODMAS, but a much better concept to reinforce here is the important fact that you are only allowed to add like terms in mathematics. By emphasising the lessons that can be learnt from these mistakes; we can look at teaching from a different perspective. Yes, the content is important. But if the learners miss out on the fundamentals behind a subject, they will not learn anything. If you would like to watch the video that Peter used in his presentation, you can find it in our Facebook group, “Master Maths and Science Family”, or search for “Thoughts on Effective Teaching” on Youtube.
A different way of looking at the teaching method 1. Understanding
3. The power of failure
There are different levels of understanding.
Teach learners how to fail.
You can always understand something better.
Effective failing: ask “Why was I wrong?”, and learn from it
Understand simple things deeply. If someone really understands something, they should be able to explain the basic atomic structure of the concept. If learners can do this, “difficult” things aren't that difficult anymore.
2. The art of asking questions Questions create a different experience. It puts learners in an active listening mode. Helps them to make connections they otherwise would not have made.
If a learner is wrong ask “Why were they wrong?”: there was a thought process behind this. Success sometimes comes from continuous failure and the will not to give up.
4. The power of the flow of ideas Everything has an origin. Try to understand this origin and the ideas that flow from there. When you are faced with a new idea, it is not the end. Ask “What now?” to be able to move forward, and create new ideas from it. Every idea leads to some other idea and also came from an idea.
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world – Nelson Mandela The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet - Aristotle
Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence – Robert Frost Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire – William Butler Yeats
Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom – George Washington Carver
He who opens a school door, closes a prison – Victor Hugo
Bad times have scientific value. These are the occasions a good learner would not miss – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Science does not know its debt to imagination - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Do not worry about your difficulties in Mathematics. I can assure you mine are still greater – Albert Einstein The study of mathematics, like the Nile, begins in minuteness but ends in magnificence – Charles Caleb Colton
Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas – Albert Einstein
In mathematics the art of proposing a question must be held of higher value than solving it – Georg Cantor
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