Lenz High Partners with Tutroom Foundation in Maths and Science Education

The 4th Industrial Revolution is fast approaching, with technologies like Artificial Intelligence, the “Cloud” and Blockchain becoming more and more integrated with everyday life. Both locally and globally, jobs are becoming much more reliant on Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) skills.

At the same time, South Africa is currently facing a grave STEM skills shortage. And the challenge starts in school. Not only are fewer South African students writing the final Maths exam in high school, but even students who do are not meeting the requirements to study STEM subjects at university. Engineering courses generally require distinctions to guarantee admission, and the number of South African students meeting these marks is below 5%.

The Tutroom Foundation was founded in 2017 with a goal to change these statistics. Tutroom Foundation is a South African Non-Profit Organisation offering a fresh approach to Maths and Science education for high school students. By using a combination of techniques to reimagine the learning experience like facilitated small group learning, revision through YouTube explainer videos, and instant, analytics-based feedback, Tutroom is helping more students gain entry to STEM degrees.

And this year, Tutroom is partnering with Lenz High. Beginning in March, all Grade 12 learners enrolled in Physical Sciences will have the opportunity to participate in Tutroom’s free programme. They will receive supplementary Maths and Science support twice a week, with content curated and aligned to the matric curriculum.

In Tutroom tutorials, Lenz High students will participate in interactive learning sessions guided by facilitators who have excelled in Maths and Science subjects. Once a week, students will watch educational YouTube explainer videos covering topics taught that week in class, providing a different and fun way to visualise difficult concepts. This will be complemented by notes packs on each topic, small group student discussions, and guided group discussions by Tutroom’s Facilitators.

However, the core of the Tutroom model is Practice, Practice, Practice! The second weekly Tutroom session purely focuses on practicing past paper questions. The setting is designed to mimic exam conditions, and students receive rapid feedback, gaining immediate access to their marked script. This allows students to revise when concepts are still fresh in their mind. Rather than running a top-down session, students who performed well on certain topics will practice teaching concepts to the rest of the class, leveraging the concept of “learning by doing.”

Throughout the course of the year, students will receive personalised feedback reports using data analytics tools. These reports will provide recommendations on where students should focus their studying based on both their strengths and weaknesses within the subject. This tailored study plan empowers students to structure their time and tackle their weaker areas. Tutroom’s model also relies on close collaboration with parents, who receive regular feedback on their child’s progress so that they can play an integral role in their child’s learning experience.

Aside from direct content work, Tutroom will bring in speakers throughout the year in STEM-related fields to get students excited about career possibilities.

The Tutroom Foundation relies on partnerships with corporate sponsors to enable its free services. Corporates can use their CSI funds to “adopt-a-school” for the year, and receive regular feedback on their students’ progress.

Beyond the immediate goal of gaining university entry, Tutroom hopes to provide students with lifelong study and collaborative learning techniques which they can carry into university and the workplace.

By Chelsea Markowitz