Basic Education minister Angie Motshekga has announced that her department is developing a coding and robotics curricula to be included from grades R-9.
This will provide learners with the skills and compentencies to prepare them for the fourth Industrial Revolution and the fast-cdhanging world of work.
Coding is due to be piloted from 2020 in 1,000 schools across five provinces. The coding curriculum will help to develop problem solving, critical thinking, creativity and teamwork.
Motshekga has revealed that the University of South Africa (UNISA) has partnered with the Department of Basic Education (DBE) by making available their 24 ICT Laboratories throughout the country for the training of 72,000 teachers in coding.
She added that Google, Teen Geeks and other businesses through are supporting the DBE to develop a coding platform that utilises Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to customise teaching and learning.
Motshekga said that the robotics curriculum will have a strong foundation in engineering and will enable learners to build and operate robots through programming code.
“This robotics curriculum will provide hands-on, creative ways to encourage students to design, experiment, build and invent” she said.
Learners will start with cardboard construction activities and by Grade 9, will be building computers from scratch. “This will not only develop STEM skills, but also contribute to effectively developing children’s creativity, critical thinking, design thinking, and digital skills. This will ensure that South Africa develops learners who are makers and inventors who will contribute to building an innovative culture in South Africa.”
This article has been edited from the original: https://businesstech.co.za/news/government/304940/big-change-for-matrics-in-south-africa/