Values driven education [what we should be teaching]
Often, a values driven education is frequently lacking with subject teachers focusing their content exclusively on completing learning outcomes.
Whilst this makes life each for the teachers, I believe that the if we can contextualize what we teach incorporating social issues into the curriculum, this not only enriches the lives of the students but also encourages them to think about their lives in the bigger scheme of things.
This may also make the lessons more interesting motivating them to think and drive their own education.
Values driven education: A bad example
As an educator, I am sad that the leadership have to tell Singaporeans to steal lunches as a way to survive.
Why is it that we have to exhibit indecent behavior to get ahead?
It is no wonder that the Oxley Rd saga has played out in such a manner.
And who the public is saying good things about is very telling when one looks at the big picture.
Values driven education: What I do in class
I always believed that even if you want to get ahead of competition, you do what is right. Not by sabotaging the competition so that you can get ahead.
You win your competition’s heart. Not by stabbing them at their heart. You find a way to co-exist. Not by annihilating your competition. I believe in synergy. Where 1+1=3.
And this I try to inculcate in my classroom.
When new students come in, it is not every man/woman for himself/herself.
We do it together.
We fight that fight together, as the BYang.tribe.
If somebody is lagging because of a fall, we promise to stay our ground (jump to 12:56min) and hold each other’s hand.
Why I do this
Because, the camaraderie makes it a little less difficult since the journey through A levels is tough.
And as a single person fighting the fight, it often feels very daunting.
To make matters worse, some see no hope nor any way out and they give up branding themselves as a failure or worse yet commit suicide.
I hope with whatever little power I have to make a difference and steer my students current and future away from this path.
On the other hand, I have also seen tremendous benefits of this camaraderie.
I recall back in my teaching days having walked to the school canteen and seeing in the corner of my eye a student who has a strong academic ability guiding one of the weaker student over some school work.
At the end of the exams that year and unbeknownst to me I have awarded one of the highest marks I have ever given to a script. And the script belongs to the student who was coaching. Tthe weaker student managed to do well too.
You see, the student who was willing to give up her time was well rewarded afterwards. Because teaching someone actually makes the person a better student.
And since then, I make sure every time a new batch of students come in, we build camaraderie. We take care of the each other.
Because the school system is constantly streaming and leaving students behind with their dreams broken and their hopes dashed, the responsibility is on us tutors to pick up the broken dreams and mend it.
Pick up the burnt out hopes and light it back up. We are frequently the last line before some of these minds are lost forever.
That’s an incredible opportunity to do good and that should be the motivation for becoming a tutor.