My kids attended a traditional type of education system.
It is a teacher-centered approach wherein the teacher is equipped with all the necessary knowledge needed to be imparted to the students. The teacher is the focus of attention so students are expected to listen and grasp the concepts imparted by the teacher. Exams are given usually after the topic has been discussed. This is to assess if the students understand the concepts being communicated.
My kids school, being a traditional setting has the following feature:
1:20 teacher to student ratio.
Not bad comparing to schools having bigger teacher-student ratio. But isn’t it amazing how teachers able to handle 20 students talking at same time or misbehaving at the same time. Most importantly on how to impart new concepts to a 20 students of varied capacity to absorbing new topics discussed.
Focused on academic excellence.
Heard good news that students from this school excels in universities and state colleges. Their curriculum is so advance that they are using books of higher grade level and — stressful!
Focused on character development
Personality traits of the students are observed. They are focused on improving self-discipline, independence, responsibility, work ethics, respect and faith. They have “buddy-buddy” system which everyone is responsible for his/her buddy thus developing care for each other — this hopefully avoids bullying.
Lots of assignment. Students are given assignment during school break. According to the school, this is their way of the students remember the lessons even during school break.
Motivated by grades
Like any traditional school, students are assessed based on their grades so competition between students is expected. Students are rated based on Academic and Personality.
The school’s first trimester period was completed thus we were informed that the report card distribution will be last weekend.
I requested the husband to picked-up the report card.
Minutes after, he came home disappointed that the eldest did not make it to the honors list. He was even more upset that the youngest rated low in academics and worst had a C in Discipline, one of the trait observed by teachers to rate student personality.
He was upset.
C in Discipline.
C for Satisfactory.
One wrong move means we fall to the next level below.
One wrong move and he will get an F for Failure.
One wrong move and surely he’ll be evicted from that impressive school.
The struggle is real.
My son just turn 5yo last month.
He was just 4 when their class my asked to write their names 5 times or write the alphabet letters both big and small 3 times in a Grade 1 sheet of paper.
He had to remember blue-to-blue and red-to-blue rules, and oh, they had to be careful and avoid lapses.
Then he had to learn know how to read 3-letter words, differentiate when to use a or an, knows when use He, She and It, learn proper use of grammatical gender, or identify a phrase from sentence.
The feedback we received from his teachers was that my son talks a lot or keeps roaming within the classroom. He just love to talk. They even had to transfer his seatmate because instead of listening to the teacher, they talk. When reprimanded, he will stop for a while and then talk again.
So how do we discipline him from being too talkative?
Or is the difficulty paying attention a misbehaving trait?
When I was in Kindergarten, I only remembered classroom activities like singing and dancing nursery songs, the recess time and washing our cups and saucers, the nap time (we literally sleep on our mats) or the story-telling time and talk.
The eldest spend her preschool years in a different school which has one-in-one teacher-student session. In this way each child is being supervised and monitored.
Or could gender be a factor — do girls behave better than boys?
Having a C in his report card makes us, his parents, realize the need to allocate ample time every day (after work) to guide and supervise him.
I get it that he needs to cope up with the fast pace class discussion and had to adjust to conform to the norms of the school’s system so we should be there for him to let him understand it but I also hope that teachers need also to adjust and find different approach to cater all students especially to those hyperactive talkative ones. I believe kids are given a chance to express themselves, so rather than suppress these potentials I’m hoping for support from teachers too.
Before this day end, a big shout-out to all teachers.
Thank you for planting the seeds that lasts a lifetime.
Happy Teachers Day