UEW and Ohio University Academics Host Dissemination Workshop
A Lecturer in the School of Creative Arts (SCA), University of Education, Winneba (UEW), Prof. Cosmas W. K. Mereku and his counterpart from Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, USA, Prof. Paschal Yao Younge, have organised a dissemination workshop at the SCA Conference Room.
The goal of the workshop was to allow the researchers to share findings from their 40-day research project on the topic "African Children's Games: Musicality and Creativity in their Natural State" with targeted public stakeholders.
These stakeholders comprised the Ministry of Education (MoE), Ghana Education Service (GES), National Council for Curriculum Assessment (NaCCA), Transforming Teaching, Education and Learning (T-TEL), and the Faculty of Educational Studies, UEW.
The researchers, who were awarded the 2019 Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Programme (CADFP), gathered video and audio recordings of several indigenous children's games, play songs, nursery rhymes, lullabies, and story-telling songs from Volta, Greater Accra, and Central Regions of Ghana to co-develop an electronic-book for the implementation of the curriculum for the Early Grade and Lower Primary levels of the new pre-tertiary educational Common Core Programme (CCP) being operationalised by NaCCA.
A total of 57 games, songs and rhymes consisting of 25 Akan, 24 Ewe, four English, two Ga and two Onomatopoeic songs were collected. Out of the 57, 25 were selected to be incorporated into the Curriculum Guide for Early Grade Educators titled “Ghanaian Children’s Games: The Artistic and Educational Playground”.
The researchers recommended that NaCCA adopts the Curriculum Guide for Early Grade Educators. They further advised that the Institute for Educational Research and Innovation Studies (IERIS), UEW, runs workshops for kindergarten and lower primary teachers across the country to sensitise them on how creative arts practices could help bring out the applicability of STEM subjects while also enhancing learning in other academic subjects.
To assist the researchers on the project, the SCA assembled a research team that included Prof. Zelma Badu-Younge, Mr. Stephen Ayesu Nyanteh, Ms. Patience Nukpezah, Mr. Stephen Osei-Akyiaw, and Mr. Nicholas Opoku.
Prof. Andy Ofori-Birikorang, the Ag. Vice-Chancellor of UEW, in his address to stakeholders, recalled the inspiration for singing "good old day play songs" during group meetings at Ohio in his university days. He expressed delight that the concept of creativity in children's play was being applied to research.
Prof. Damien Kofi Mereku, a seasoned mathematics educator at UEW's Department of Mathematics Education, delivered the keynote address. He emphasised the importance of educators appreciating the Millennium and Sustainable Development Goals and working to integrate and achieve them in their educational efforts to improve society.
Prof. Younge spoke on “overview of the 40-day collaborative research” while Prof. C. W. K. Mereku presented on “accomplishment of the collaborative research". The Director of IERIS, Prof. Samuel Hayford summed up how the Institute could collaborate to sustain the project.
The dissemination workshop also hosted on zoom for the CADFP Team-USA and the Institute of International Education (IIE), was attended by the Effutu Municipal Director of Education, Mrs. Mabel Judith Micah, Mr. Justice G. Adjerakor (representative of UEW Early Childhood Education Department), Headteachers of Uncle Rich Preparatory School, St. Paul Preparatory School, UNIPRA North and South schools among others.