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No such thing as a 'stupid' question

 

posted by Focused on July 23, 2009 @ 7:08 pm in EDUCATION

 

             Learning a subject can be a challenging task for students, let alone primary school students. Teaching also has its challenges as teachers need to find all types of ways to ensure that their students understand what is being taught. Constant two-way communication between both parties is necessary. Nothing is more crucial to the assimilation of information than the asking of questions by students.

 

         Asking questions allows the student to obtain the clarifications he or she needs to cement the knowledge being acquired. From the teacher's point of view, student questions enable the teacher to have an indication of the direction in which the class is going. The process is simple but it must always take place.

 

            Unfortunately, communication between students and teachers can easily be derailed if students are made to feel that their questions are stupid. Whether this happens by accident or not, the whole educational experience is distorted. Students who are reluctant to ask questions are less likely to consolidate their knowledge base. If students do not ask questions freely, teachers cannot identify the areas of the curriculum that need re-emphasizing  nor can they identify students who need extra help (at an early stage). This can result in students repeating grades or , simply, writing education off completely.

 

        Inadvertent student marginalisation can have a disastrous effect on individuals and, consequently, on society. Classroom size is a contributing factor to the issue. The more students there are in a class, the less individual attention they will receive.

 

       The aforementioned issues should not be left out of the debate on improving performance in education in Jamaica or in any other country. Teachers face the pressure of remaining on pace to cover the entire syllabus. However, a class will be more productive as a whole if more students participate. The conventional education format needs to be re-evaluated.  Reducing class size is a step. Let us not forget that Albert Einstein was once labeled as a dunce by his teachers. What if that mind had gone to waste?

 

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Tags : Education, classroom participation, teaching method, new teaching methods, learning techniques
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