Dear Mathematics Teachers,
Greetings and best wishes on the occasion of the annual Teachers’ Day 2019, from the Mathematics Teachers’ Association (MTA), and me personally as its President.
As you may be aware MTA was founded at a meeting of the founding members held on 20 March 2018 at the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, Mumbai, with the objective of bringing together teachers, educators and mathematicians in a joint endeavour, with the aim to serve as an instrument to improve the standards of mathematics at various levels, generate interest in mathematics among students through various activities, nurture mathematical talent etc.
I am happy to report to you some of the major activities undertaken by the Association during the last year (for more details please visit the Association’s website https://www.mtai.org.in).
An Inaugural Conference of MTA was held during January 3-5, 2019, commencing on the 188th birth anniversary of Savitribai Phule, honouring the educational visionary who was one of the pioneers of universal education. The Conference, held at the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education, Mumbai, received a heartening response from mathematics teachers. The programme included several theme sessions on school and college mathematics and on classroom experiences. There were also two workshops, on Technology in Math education and Bridging school and college mathematics, and a panel discussion on Engaging every student in Mathematics: realising the vision of Savitribai Phule. The academic programme was supplemented by a cultural event, an engaging solo play by Sushama Deshpande, enacting the touching life story of Savitribai Phule.
A Bulletin of MTA, “Blackboard”, was launched under the editorship of Prof. B. Sury, with an Editorial Board constituted to assist him. The first issue of Blackboard was released at the inaugural conference; it has been made accessible on the webpage of MTA (Blackboard Issue 1). The issue contains a simplified expositions of award-winning advances inn mathematics (in the context of the Fields medals and other awards at the International Congress of Mathematicians-2018) on the one hand, and a variety of educational and interactive articles, involving exposition of history, book reviews, quizzes, puzzles, problems, humour, etc., on the other hand. The feedback received on the issue has been encouraging. The second issue of the Blackboard has been brought out recently and is under circulation.
MTA has been in charge of organizing, in collaboration with HBCSE, the PRMO (Pre-Regional Mathematical Olympiad) which is the first step in the sequential selection process towards participation in the International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO). The participation in PRMO by a large number of students has been a source of much cheer. It is also a pleasure to note in this context that this year witnessed a very successful performance by the Indian team at IMO, held at Bath, UK, in July 2019, winning 1 Gold and 4 Silver medals and an Honourable mention. Starting this year MTA will also be conducting the tests in India for the Iranian Geometry Olympiad (for details please visit https://www.mtai.org.in/iranian-geometry-olympiad/). These activities are currently being coordinated for MTA by Dr. S. Muralidharan.
On the last Teachers’ Day we initiated a drive for membership of the Association, aiming to bring about active participation of the wide community of mathematics teachers and mathematics enthusiasts, and in particular special concessional Life membership is on offer to teachers from schools and colleges, at a membership fee of Rs. 2000 (regular Life membership fee is Rs. 3000); please visit the webpage for further details. You are encouraged to join the endeavour, so that together we can build a movement for raising the mathematical standards in the country.
We look forward to carrying out many more creative and fruitful activities in future with your participation and suggestions.
Wishing you once again a very happy Teachers’ Day.
With best wishes,
Founding President, MTA