28 Nov The old ways – are they the best?
Education has changed considerably since I was a pupil and even more so since my parents were at school; yet the debate rages on about what is the best method to help children to learn. Over the years there have been two main methods, ‘the teacher centered technique’ and ‘the child centered technique’. Firstly let’s remind ourselves of the two techniques, the first is when the teacher address/teachers the class, otherwise known as chalk and talk. The children often chant and recall facts with very little original input from the children. The second is child led learning – something that we see more often in schools nowadays. However, the question is which learning style allows children to feel at their happiest and which learning style they learn more in? A recent report, called ‘Achievement-Well-Being-Trade-off in Education’, has compared both learning styles and children’s happiness with interesting results.
The report compares children’s happiness and progress during an experiment that used both of the above methods. The evidence shows that the children were happier whilst in lessons that used the child centered method, yet they did not make as much progress as they did during the teacher centered technique. This is a very interesting result, especially from a teachers point of view. I have spent 10 years in the classroom trying to find the balance between ‘enjoyable lessons’ and exceptional progress. As a Governor, I know that this conversation is still on-going and that everyone has a different opinion on the matter.
Growing Young Minds
At Growing Young Minds we believe that learning should be enjoyable; however, it must be remembered that learning is the objective of any tuition. There is no point in paying for your children to attend a class where they have a great time but do not make progress, this is ultimately a waste of their time and your financial efforts. Personally I believe keeping something ‘fun’ yet educational is a very fine line; one I encourage all of our tutors to step carefully along. Sometimes we just need to use whatever method we think will work to ensure that each child is learning and reaching their full potential. Here at G.Y.M we are proud to have qualified teachers who adapt their lessons accordingly. We always reflect on each lesson to ensure that each child learns and reaches their individual goals.
As parents would you like schools to return to the old system of rote learning or do you think there is a place for having ‘fun’ in the classroom?