The Numbers Lady Visits Antigua and Barbuda

A woman speaking to an audience
The Numbers Lady gives her presentation

The U.S. Embassy to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean, and the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States partnered with the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology in Antigua and Barbuda to host Dr. Rebecca Klemm, “The Numbers Lady,” from February 24-26. Dr. Klemm, a statistician by training, specializes in explaining mathematical concepts in everyday language. Her visit was part of the Embassy’s ongoing efforts to promote education in the STEM fields — science, technology, engineering, and math.

While in Antigua, Dr. Klemm met with the Minister of Education, Science, and Technology, the Honorable Michael Browne, who welcomed her to the island and thanked the U.S. Embassy for its continued partnership on educational programs. Dr. Klemm also met with other officials in the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology to discuss challenges and possible solutions facing math teachers on the island.

Dr. Klemm paid a visit to the Adele School for Special Children where she engaged in an interactive session with 25 students.  They played with Dr. Klemm’s unique inventions, such as geometry puzzles and a numbers ball. These activities not only challenged the students, but also brought numbers and math to life in an engaging and fun way.

In two separate sessions, Dr. Klemm also met with parents from the National Parent Teachers Association (NPTA) and a cross-section of the island’s primary school math and science teachers. In these sessions, she challenged participants to explore a new way of looking at and teaching mathematical concepts. The parents who attended the NPTA session shared challenges they were facing while helping their children with math homework. Meanwhile, the teachers and Dr. Klemm exchanged ideas on how to teach math and science, as she shared tips on making math more fun and observational.

The three-day visit to Antigua culminated in a free public event at the Multi-Purpose Center in St. John’s on February 26. More than 300 people, including many children of all ages, packed the hall to see The Numbers Lady and gain insight into making math easier to understand. Dr. Klemm took to the stage accompanied by her plush toys — numbers 0 through 9, known as “Team Ten” — to share her knowledge and expertise.

Distinguished members of the audience included Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology Rosa Greenaway, and Acting Director of Education Doristeen Etinoff.

Public Affairs Officer at the U.S. Embassy Yolonda Kerney said, “We are so pleased to have worked with the Ministry of Education, Science, and Technology on this educational program featuring Dr. Klemm.  They proved invaluable partners in executing the program, which saw several engagements with various groups in Antigua. The U.S. Embassy remains committed to promoting STEM education in the Eastern Caribbean and helping to create greater opportunities for the youth of the region through education.”