my thoughts on education
Ahhh one of my favourtire subjects.
When my son started school last year one of the things the principal said has been embedded in my brain.Primary Education is the forgotten child of Education.Year after year we sit with bated breath waiting for the 12th Grade(Matric) results. We never see how well the lower grades do.Yet without this very foundation those Matric marks would not be achieved.
It’s with a good foundation that students go on to be better students in higher grades.
I had the choice to put my son in a Grade R (0) in a formal schooling environment but made the decision not to and I am so very happy with my decision.
Children need to be children for as long as possible and not in a rigid school type environment.My son went to an awesome nursery school where the Grade R is of such high standards that any school will welcome them in Grade One.
If I look back at my own Foundation Phase I can see that too much emphasis was spent wanting me to be right-handed and not allow me to be what God naturally wanted me to be….a lefty.My 2nd Grade was all about having me write with my right hand instead of with my left.My 3rd Grade had me put in the nightmare of a teacher (Ms Lief or Leaf – this woman was so horrid why she ever became a teacher was beyond me and to this day Id still like to give her a backhand or several.She would shake you like a rattle – grab you by the shoulders and shake you back and forth with such force.She tore the earring of a little girl from grabbing pulling her ear so hard – the more I talk of this woman the more I feel she should be found.She should send an open letter to all her old students with a massive apology)She told my mom I had special needs, they had me tested and made to feel like I was stupid.I actually have an above average IQ but I was always so bloody lazy (I’m making up for that now).
Our principal said that primary school is not just the teacher and the student.Its not a place you drop off your child in Grade One shake hands with the educator and pick your kids up in the 7th Grade when they off to High School.I fully agree with him 100%
Primary School Education is triangular – Student – Teacher – Parent.
When your child’s teacher calls you in because she feels there is an issue that needs addressing I find it terrible that parents get all defensive. If a child needs a few Occupational Therapy appointments or speech therapy appointments this int because the teacher doesn’t have time to sit and address the issue (step back and think for a bit….how did she come to this conclusion? She didn’t thumb suck it, she actually spent time with your child often enough to finally take the decision to address the issue with you.)Occupational Therapy or Speech Therapy are not for “Special Needs Kids” they are for every child.
I often hear people say…..Good Gosh we didn’t have any therapy when we were at school and we turned out just fine.Yes perhaps you did turn out fine but perhaps you would have gotten to the “destination” a lot easier had it been for these tools provided.
Bottom line.When your children are in Grades R ,1,2,3 which we call the Foundation Phase take the time to really be part of their education, take the time to read to them and have them read to you, take the time to do daily maths with them (when cutting your pizza , if I cut it in the middle how many pieces do I have (2) and what is this called? Half, etc.There is so much that you can do with out it coming from a text-book or in the form of a worksheet. Remember children learn through play.