Home Schooling For Your Children

Home Schooling is the wave of the future; it is how America will survive, or fail.

To understanding how important it is for you to home school your child one need merely look at the way children are taught today. For the purposes of this article I will choose one, and only one item. Believe me, there are dozens of items like this one. The item I will discuss is how cheap your child’s work is, and how this makes your child view his work, and therefore himself, as unimportant.

Your child is given a task. Maybe it is to write a report, maybe it is a page of math. Halfway through the task the bell rings, and the child is made to go play.

Yes, made to go play. The intent here is not to complete the work, but to order the child about, and make him/her amenable to social control and behavior modification.

If you were at work, had an important job to do, would your boss make you go play? And, more important, would you let yourself be made to go play? Negative. You would put your nose to the grindstone and pound away at that job for one simple reason: it is important.

But day after day your child is interrupted, made to go be ‘frivolous,’ and this tells him/her that the job is not important.

And, most interesting, the teacher says it is important.

So what is the solution? Well, here is an interesting alternative. You put work before you child, and you say, ‘You can take a food break if you wish, but you don’t get to play until it is done.

Now, how many of us, if the boss said, “You can work till five, but if the job is done early you can take off for the day,” would work our fingers to the bone?

Every last one of us. The job suddenly becomes extra important, and our lives literally hang upon it.

When I did this at my school the result was instant. Children ignored breaks, told other kids to be quiet, and became work maniacs.

Yes, sometimes I had to check the work, at least in the beginning, to make sure it wasn’t slipshod. But doing this at times during the day forestalls any nasty confrontations with one big checking at the end.

Yes, sometimes they wouldn’t get their school work done, and I would commiserate with them, and let them go. But if you plan the work out (with their input is helpful), then you can usually come up with a target that will get them an extra hour of play, and get you an extra hour’s worth of their work.

Most important, through this type of home schooling approach your child will develop a sense of self worth, and a very valuable work ethic.

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SAT Just Got A Facelift

Things are about to get weird.

Spring is here, time can travel, and the SAT is undergoing its biggest change in 10 years!

What’s Different?

At this point, it may be easier to explain what isn’t different. Arguably the most beneficial change is students will no longer be penalized for guessing. This change alone is a common reason why many students opt to take the ACT over the SAT, so this could very well increase the amount of students who sign up for the exam. However, the biggest change according to testing professional and educators is that this will be a more “text-based” test. Even though the vocabulary section is getting left in 2015, the math and reading sections are expected to be much more dense with text and the essay is now optional. Furthermore, questions now only have four answer options compared to five, and calculators can even be used during some parts of the math section. And for the kicker, the test will now be scored on the old 1600 point scale instead of 2400.

Pros and Cons

The change that is anticipated to have the most significant impact on scores is that guessing is no longer penalized. Now, when students are reminded that they have 1 minute left to finish their section, instead of scratching their head trying to remember the Pythagorean Theorem, they can hastily bubble in the remaining unanswered questions without having to worry how much it’ll hurt their score. This runs into the issue of students getting “lucky” with guessing, and they could end up with a higher score than they would have if guessing was still penalized. There is also the very important change of losing the dreaded vocabulary section. Students will no longer have to stress for months memorizing the meaning flashcard definitions that no one knows the meaning of except the people who write the SAT, so they can now focus their studies on more relevant sections.

If we’re speaking strictly numbers, students have a much better chance of getting higher scores. Now that they have less answer choices and aren’t getting penalized for an incorrect answer, it seems like these kids are set to get into Princeton! Except, for not. The SAT is changing because the college admissions process is changing. Admissions officers aren’t just solely looking at SAT scores anymore when they choose to admit a student into their university. The SAT is adapting to the changing field of education, and universities are doing the same. On the bright side, you’ll get to avoid more questions like this: When I was 2 years old, my brother was half my age. Now I am 100 years old, how old is my brother?

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Teacher’s Role in Innovation

What does the trampoline, popsicles, braille, the Oink-a-Saurus App, and wristies have in common? Well, they were all invented by kids (Perman). Regardless of age, race, disability, or economic status the ability to become an innovator lies within. As educators we have the responsibility to educate and prepare students, all students, for their future, which can be the ultimate challenge when no one knows what the future will hold. The only consistency is knowing that each student will have a different future and this world, as we know it, will be drastically different in 20 years. While studying innovation, through an educator’s perspective, I’ve realized there are several roles we can play in order to inspire innovation but two really stand out: we can encourage and teach professional skills.

The initial role as an educator is to inspire and encourage innovation by never underestimating the creative intuition of anyone, especially a child. Teachers have the opportunity to boost a child’s confidence or destroy it. By merely saying “oh, that’s awesome” or giving a disbelieving look, the actions of a teacher can permanently influence a child. Self-confidence is initially learned through others’ positive motivation, and a teacher’s voice can be that initial motivation to keep the student believing in their self and in their goals. As a high school student, Philo T. Farnsworth (a.k.a. The Father of Television) presented his teacher with a better television system; his teacher replied “go for it” and continued to support and follow Farnsworth through the process (Flawtow,94). I cannot imagine what could have happened if Farnsworth’s teacher would have reacted in a non-supportive manner.

Not only can teachers encourage students’ verbally but also in the way they allow students to ask questions. Although the question of “why?” can generally get on everyone’s nerves (eventually) it is important to encourage curiosity and divergent thinking when it comes to innovation. Norris Sanders, author of Classroom Questions-what kinds?, provides readers with a new perspective that questions can be the key to student interest and engagement which encourages learning and should not be ignored. One way to help capture those interest is by creating a Wonder Wall for the classrooms. A wonder wall provides teachers and students with an opportunity to allow their curiosity to run. If a student asks an off-topic question, the teacher can say “that’s interesting, why don’t you put it on the wonder wall” and continue the lesson. Then, during a down time students address theirs or someone else’s wondering question.

Another role teachers have in innovation is teaching students how to be a professional, including the skill of problem solving. Every invention or business is initially created to solve some type of problem (medical issues, processing speed, even boredom). It’s time to teach our students that a problem is only a question that has not been answered, and it is their job to answer it. Teaching in-depth problem solving techniques is not a top priority in many curriculum standards and could easily fall through the cracks. However if teachers took a unique approach to teaching by implementation the DISCOVER (Discovering Intellectual Strengths and Capabilities while Observing Varied Ethnic Responses) curriculum model, they would be able to set the foundation for future innovators as well as prepare all students in being resourceful at problem solving (Maker, Schiever, p165-194). The DISCOVER curriculum model allows students opportunity to identify a problem (that they are passionate about), research the previously attempted solutions, and look at the problem through various perspectives. In doing so, students will be prepared to investigate and hypothesize possible new solutions and, depending on ability level and time, could implement. This model provides all ability levels and diverse learners with the opportunity to discover a new way of approaching life problems. Through the implementation of the DISCOVER model, students will strengthen their professional skills by learning how to identify problems, use higher level questioning techniques, research using various resources, identify different perspectives, and work collaboratively with others.

Educators have the opportunity to positively influence and provide students with the skills to be successes in life, if they have the desire and autonomy to do so. Teaching students to succeed and change the world are two reasons why many teachers get into the profession. Think about how many students teachers interact with on a daily basis; when you calculate that total over the course of an entire working career it is astonishing the number of developing minds teachers can influence. A teacher’s role in innovation can be tiresome, but in the end, it is an exciting and rewarding experience.

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How College Students Earn Their Job Offers Before They Graduate

It should not come as a surprise to college students that good jobs do not just fall into someone’s lap. The students who receive the best job offers have earned them. Therefore, it is important to understand that the term “earned” means that the student’s performance has been consistently good throughout the college years. It does not mean a last minute flurry of improved performance near the end of the senior year.

Employers look for the students who meet their needs, wants and expectations. To give themselves the best chance for landing a good job in their areas of interest, students must find out what their target employers want and give it to them. That’s why wise students conduct some serious research early in their sophomore year. They select a career direction, identify jobs that are of interest, gather information about the employers that have those jobs and pin down exactly what those employers expect to see in the candidates for those jobs. In that way, interested students will have four or five semesters to do the things that their target employers want. If all of that sounds like a lot of work, it is. But that is just the beginning.

When students understand what their target employers want and work hard to meet or exceed those expectations, they put themselves in position to compete for and win the best jobs. Furthermore, when students excel in one of those areas or go beyond employer expectations, they will clearly set themselves apart from ordinary students. Being able to stand out in a positive way will always lead to more and better job offers.

Some students think that good grades are all they will need. That is no longer true for most employers. Obviously, doing well in the classroom is a good first step. However, the best employers look for more. They look for students who have a proven track record in a number of important areas: Experience, Creativity, Problem Solving, Sales, Teamwork and more. Every employer wants employees who can get things done no matter what problems they face. They love students with job-related work experience who have already shown what they can do.

Each college experience presents students with an opportunity to stand out from the crowd. The best jobs are earned by students who work, participate, lead and succeed in demonstrating an array of skills and capabilities. Job hunting is a competition that is won by students who use their college years to accumulate a list of accomplishments and successes.

If students graduate without a good job, they should look back to the things they didn’t do:

– The Advice they didn’t follow

– The Job Hunting Information they didn’t obtain or utilize

– The Activities in which they didn’t participate

– The Research they didn’t conduct

– The Grades they didn’t achieve

– The Accomplishments they didn’t produce

– The Job Hunting Systems and Techniques they didn’t learn

– The Career Services Counselors they didn’t visit

– The Work Experience they didn’t obtain

– The People they didn’t meet

– The Employment Training Sessions they didn’t attend

– The Network of Contacts they didn’t build

– The Professors they didn’t impress

– The References they didn’t get to know

– The Interviewing Skills they didn’t practice

– The Employment Web Sites they didn’t identify

– The Effort they didn’t put into Job Search Preparation Activities

– The Time They Wasted during the years prior to graduation

If a student fails to demonstrate his or her capabilities with a good job as the goal, why should an employer have any interest? With few exceptions, it is the student’s decisions and performance throughout the college years that will determine whether he or she will land a job that starts at $25,000, $35,000, $45,000, $55,000, $65,000 or more.

All students make choices, as they move through college. With each choice that satisfies an employer need, the student moves closer to employment success. It is one thing to graduate with a degree. It is quite a different thing to have impressed an employer with a variety of performances that make it clear that the student can contribute to the success of the employer’s organization.

Job search preparation is not brain surgery. It is just hard work. A lot of it. The best employers look for students who have anticipated their needs and were willing to tackle the activities that lead to success on the job.

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Ways to Understand and Improve Your College to Career Transition

In every person’s life, there are landmark points where life transitions from one season to the next. The first landmark in life comes shortly after birth when a child starts walking. This landmark is literally the first step that gives a child the freedom to act on his or her own; to get where they want to go by their own will. The next milestone is speaking for the first time. This is a landmark occasion that begins to develop how we connect and communicate thoughts and emotions to the world surrounding us. The commencement of school is the next landmark, which lays the foundation and cultivation of learning, intellect, and understanding. Graduation is one of the major achievements. This is where freedom comes to depart college with all the knowledge and wisdom from lessons learned, and make a mark in the professional world. Until we graduate, we can only look to the future to find our dreams. After graduating, we have the power and opportunity to actualize those dreams into present reality.

All of us have a dream, hopefully dreams. If you ask any small child about his or her dream, he or she will tell you things that can be beyond your imagination. Upon graduation, we get a qualification that has the potential to open many doors for us. Something that says, “satisfactory completion of course study” and “I have the capacity and capability to learn.” However, when it comes time to turn that capacity to learn into cash-flow from a career, many college graduates are discovering that the path to finding your dreams (or dream career) is not paved in the manner that it was promised. The time period between graduation and actually finding a career is getting longer and longer. When it comes time to touch your dreams and make them real, will you be ready for the transition?

If we prepare for our futures, and graduation goes in the right direction, the possibilities for growth can be endless. That’s one more educated and (hopefully) responsible citizen able to forward himself or herself and make a contribution to society. But if we are already in school pursuing a degree and getting an education, how else can we prepare for this landmark transition? Is there anything else that can be done to better the chances for success? The short answer is, “yes!” Here are 7 understandings that will prepare you for graduation and improve your transition to finding a career and actualizing your dreams.

1. A College Degree Does Not Guarantee You a Job

Let’s get one thing out of the way first; no one cares about you’re “A-for-Effort” (or you’re A+ for that matter). What was true 40 years ago (what your parents told you) is no longer true today. Just because you spent the last few years of your life toiling away does not mean that someone will hire you. Even though a university education is one of the best ways to increase your earning potential throughout your career, it does not guarantee it. If you have learned anything in college, you should have learned that nothing is given; everything is earned. The same goes with your transition from college into your career. A degree does not give you the right to an interview and a job. You have to earn that like you just earned the degree; Remember.

2. The College A.S./B.S. Are The New H.S. Diploma

Go ahead, punch your pearls. I know you can’t believe I just said that. After all the hours of sleep that you missed and money spent on coffee beans, how dare I compare the two! Now that you have calmed down, let’s take a logical and educated look at the matter. One of the things that you learn in college is that the more specialized that you are, the better your chances for selection. The higher the degree (i.e. Bachelors, Masters, and Ph.D.), the more specialized you are in your field and the more money you can make. So if a high school diploma is just a general education that prepares you for your bachelor’s in a specific subject or field, you are still in the general population of that field. Everyone graduating with you will have one of those pieces of paper just like you, and believe it or not, there are a lot of people graduating. What will set you apart from the rest?

3. Be On A First Name Basis With Your Professors

Now I’m not sure what size college that you go to, but if it’s a large university, this is definitely for you. This is one of the first things that you can do to set yourself apart from the rest of the general population. Make yourself a name, not just a college identification number. Many times, a professor may have existing connections in the field, especially if they are working in it as well! You never know what opportunities communication with you professor may present, such as specialized office hours and communication while in college, and personal letters of recommendation afterward. It’s not just about what you know, but who you know and how you know.

4. Keep Constant Communication With Your Counselor/Advisor

How is your college experience so far? Are you having fun and living life? If so, then I am sure that you want to keep it up and are looking forward to graduating on time in the near future. Sometimes during your years of study, program requirements change along the way. If that is the case, you probably don’t want to approach your “last” year and find out that you are missing courses from your track or have been taking courses and spending money unnecessarily; something that could have been avoided by communicating with your advisor. Going to see them at least once a semester will keep this from happening.

5. You’re Going To Join Social Organizations, Make Sure To Join A Professional One

We know that you did not come to college just for the books, so enjoy your years while you still can. Experience new things, find friends and make memories. However, in the midst of everything, do not forget about your end goals of graduation and pursuing your career. One of the ways to do that is to supplement the social organizations that you join with at least one professional one. This may seem like a trivial task, but it’s one of the ways to begin developing your network while you are still in college. You may get the chance to develop your career skills hands-on before you have to take yourself too seriously.

6. Seek Out and Take Opportunities To Gain Experience

Remember how we discussed earlier that the bachelor’s degree is the new high school diploma? This is one of the ways to prepare yourself and gain an edge. Separate yourself from the general population of people who want exactly what you do. Everyone will have a degree, but few will actually have experience working within their field, only aspiring dreams too. This may come in the form of an internship, professional development workshops, undergraduate laboratories, workplace shadow programs and a vast amount of other ways to prepare you for your transition after graduation. Furthermore, you know what you would like to do; do you know if you in fact like doing it? Imagine how it would feel to spend years focused on a future career doing something, only to hate it immensely once you actually do it. If this happens, what have you done with the last four years of your life? More importantly, what will you do with the next four years? Avoid an experience that many college graduates go through by exposing yourself, through opportunities, to figure it out first hand.

7. Do Not Wait Until Your Last Semester To Visit Your Career Services Center

I repeat, DO NOT wait until your last semester to visit your career services center. This is last, but most certainly not least of all. I urge you not to make the mistake of procrastinating on this one; like most college graduates do. You spend the first three years carefree and having fun, only to spend the last year trying to prepare for graduation and cramming all the career preparation tasks into one semester. If this is you, stop cheating yourself immediately! You are missing valuable information and resources that will help to prepare you to enter the workforce with energy and expertise. Services such as resume creation and re-writing, employer workshops, interviewing skills and mock interviews, career advice and job fairs are just a few of options that may be available to you as an undergraduate at low or no costs. These services will cost you hundreds of dollars after graduation if you do not take advantage. The point is to make money at some point, not keep spending it, right?

When it comes time to touch your dreams and make them real, will you be ready for the transition? Will you be as prepared as possible, equipped and ready to move in the direction of your dreams? I hope that you now have the knowledge and wisdom to pursue the career you want and actualize your dreams. You have the power to make your mark on the professional world. Will you take advantage of your opportunity?

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Homeschooling Mentoring and Support

Mentoring and support groups are a great way to meet other homeschoolers in your area. They give parents an opportunity to ask questions and get answers from reliable sources. These groups have a variety of different children who are different ages. Therefore, the parents of such children are able to mentor new mothers or fathers in their next step if they need any help. Will and Sue enthusiastically recommended the mentors they and their children had had throughout their homeschooling journey:

When going about on different camps or outings, the other parents really do become mentors to the children and that’s really valuable and is the beginning of a relationship that extends into the children’s lives. Mentoring can be a tremendously important when they go off to study or move away from home, to have these stable adult contacts in their lives year after year, who are interested in their lives. Mentors are there if they need help, advice, wisdom, prayer support or whatever it is. It’s a relationship of trust. Its’ been a support for us and an encouragement for our kids to have these other people. They’re all very different, but they’re all able to contribute in their own way. To have that continuity is special. For instance, we held Jono when he was a baby, and now Jono is married and he has babies of his own.

Veteran homeschool parents in home groups find themselves becoming mentors to new homeschool families. As a new homeschooler, and one that wishes to continue homeschooling without burning out, it is vitally important to become involved in a home group, as these are the basis of training and support in the home. Experienced homeschool parents take a role in educating and initiating new families into the routines of life as a homeschooler. For instance, if parents are not sure what to do for high school, another parent/s in these groups may suggest helpful ideas or explain how they did it. In Canberra, for instance, there is a secular group (Home Education Network Canberra and Southern Tablelands or HENCAST) and a Christian group (Christian Home Education Canberra or CHEC). This is just the beginning of the groups available, especially with the advent of Facebook, Twitter and other social media websites.

Homeschooled children also benefit by the influence of older mentors in their lives. These mentors can often be a generation or two older. They can be grandparents, friends or other homeschooling parents whom the homeschooled children spend time with. When asked if he had any mentors, homeschool student, Ben replied:

Yes, I did, especially when it came to building. I have three or four friends now who are 60 years old and onwards. Some have even passed on now. They taught me heaps and heaps. I spent a lot of time in people’s garages, tinkering away with a bird cage and all kinds of things. The mentors sat and spent their time with me. The grandparents were also pretty good. I spent a lot of time in the shed doing metal work… welding up bits of tractors and things like that as a child. My parents would be inside with the grandmother while I was spending time in the garage with granddad.

Homeschooling magazines and website are also other great and supportive resources. The Home Education Network Otherways Magazine gives parent’s a great opportunity for encouragement and advice in their homeschooling journey. Each issue is delivered quarterly in the mail (or alternately it can be downloaded online). Subscribers can also access all back issues printed. These publications are great for answering the plethora of questions the homeschool mum or dad has, as well as raising other issues close to their heart.

Facebook groups are a great way to ask experienced and fellow homeschooling parent’s questions. For instance, the last three posts in the ‘Homeschool Australia’ forum group I participated in have been:

o Can anyone recommend movies based on historical events? Preferably Australian but not too bothered. – 51 responses

o My 12yr old has totally thrown his sleep cycle out of whack. Today he didn’t go to sleep until 8am. So not much learning is being done because when I’m asleep he is awake and when I am awake he is asleep. How can I fix this? – 27 responses

o Just wondering what outcomes I can meet with a hip hop workshop my 12yr old, year 6 son is doing? It involves composing a beat, adding extra instruments to it, writing a song and performing it. He also does hip hop dancing, aboriginal dancing and learning about the history of rap/hip hop music. – 4 responses

The range of questions, as can be seen, are as wide-ranging and frank as can be. Many parents would discover the answer to their own questions via these forums. This particular group has over 2800 members and is closely monitored by a few administration members who ensure the group stays on topic. Most groups in Australia are closed groups, and require prospective members to tell the administration a little about themselves before they join, in order that vandals or anti-homeschooling activists do not join.

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New Perspective on Teaching and Learning

One of the best pieces of advice that I have heard as a teacher was “to be careful not to teach like you were taught.” That was easier said than done. After all, it worked for me and others. However, the time has come to recognize that the teacher is not the only source of information in the classroom. Students learn more than content in the classroom. The teachers also teach more than content. The teacher and the students’ personalities, values and belief systems affect the teaching and learning process. The environment including the advancement and accessibility of technology also play a role in the process.

I recalled as a French teacher in a particular setting, many students preferred Google Translation on their cellular device over the hard copy bilingual dictionary. I would have preferred that they used the dictionary. Why? I am one that values holistic learning. The dictionary is a rich valuable resource; it offers so much more than a translation- and in this case Google translation is sometimes out of context. I realize that it takes more time to look up a word in a dictionary/thesaurus versus Google Translation. My students seemed to value the instantaneous gratification that this platform offers. How do we reconcile the two- my desire for delayed holistic learning and technology endearment and sensible captivation? Well, there is the online dictionary.

The time has come to realize that as teachers we are competing with so many things that are vying for our students’ attention, which inextricably affects their perspective on education and learning. It’s ironic though that in another setting, some students actually used the dictionary in “secret”; they apologized for using it when I took notice. In their justification, I can identify a certain sense of self-imposed expectation that they should have known how to use the particular word. Thus, there were some fear and love surrounding that expectation. Which is greater between the two emotions? As teachers, one of our greatest tasks is to strike a balance between love and fear as it pertains to teaching and learning. Let’s have a discussion. How do you stay aware of what is going on in your classroom underneath the content input/output, pedagogical activities, behaviors, etc. The details are important. I used to journal. What does conscious teaching mean to you? How do you separate the philosophical and practical aspects of teaching? Can they be separated?

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Education Shapes the Academic World

“The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn… and change”-Carl Rogers. As the saying goes, education is important but the person who can bring a change with what he or she has learnt has actually gained knowledge.

As mentioned by Britain’s leading expert on school recruitment, there is a noticeable crisis of trainee teachers in some of the important subjects included in the school curriculum. It is an alarming situation faced by a number of schools in the U.K.

The right to education act encourages each and every individual to educate themselves and many unprivileged get to realize their dream. But a large number of children especially the handicapped are passing out from school without learning anything fruitful. Teachers are considered as the pillars to success of any students throughout their career. They play a vital role in shaping the career of a student and motivating them to reach their goal in life. The failure of teachers to play their part not only hampers the career graph of students where they obtain knowledge without any effective outcome but it also obstructs their pathway to a bright future. Teachers are touted as the determining factor of a student’s academic career. Despite this fact, there is a global deficit both in the number and quality of teachers. This fact is proved by UNESCO Institute of Statistics (UIS) which shows over 1.7 million more primary teachers need to receive universal primary education by 2015 replacing 5.1 million who will leave the profession during this period. With the inclusion of demand for pre-primary and lower-secondary teachers, the figures will go on increasing. In many developing countries, inspite of the growing number of education system, there is a subsequent shortfall of proper knowledge and lack of apt skills and training among teachers. The minimum required qualification for entrance into teaching profession is also directly or indirectly responsible for the degradation in the quality of teachers. Lack of sound subject knowledge makes it difficult for the teachers to explain it to the students and that limits the learning outcome of children.

Professor Jon Howson, the founder of TeachVac, an independent vacancy-matching and monitoring service for education professionals after conducting a research into the labour market for teachers had said that there would be a crisis in the supply of teachers in 2015. The largest deficit in teachers was detected in London and the home counties where the pay is very meagre. According to the TeachVac report, among 18,704 vacancies in England, 3,583 were in London. The numbers establish the fact that teaching as a profession is losing its popularity in the job sector. The reasons might be many. While the increase in the salaries in the private sector is 4% while that of public sector is restricted to only 1%. It also makes teaching a less attractive career according to many. However with the improving economy, there has been a constant effort to draw fresh graduates to the profession especially for key subjects like maths, English, physics and chemistry.

The challenges faced by the education sector to produce effective teachers are quite a few.

Choosing the right people:

In order to improve the quality of teachers, there must be an up-gradation of standard in the recruitment process. Those candidates should be chosen those who have the required skill and knowledge to teach. Over the years it has been seen that many people have entered this profession not out of love and passion but out of compulsion as there were no other jobs suitable in the market for them. If you can recruit the right people to teach, students will no more pass out of school without gaining any proper knowledge.

Proper training to teachers:

Many teacher training colleges fail to deliver proper subject knowledge and pedagogical skills that play a vital role in shaping the career of a child. Teachers are passing out of training colleges without acquiring the skills to teach. Proper training will not only improve the quality of teachers but will also draw more candidates to this profession.

Motivation:

At the end of the day salary becomes an important factor in recruiting quality teachers. Low salary demotivates teachers to give their 100 percent as it directly affects their lives. They often look for part time work for earning more which reduces their effort and dedication to work. In order to recruit well trained teachers, a hike in salary is essential and for that there must an increase in the investment. These are the deciding factors in detaining well trained teachers and their commitment to the job.

Equal distribution of teachers:

In many countries, qualified teachers prefer to teach in urban schools due to the facilities available there. As a result the schools in the rural areas are left with unqualified, untrained and inexperienced teachers who fail to impart proper knowledge to the students. This even leads to withdrawal of students from rural schools as they fail to meet the basic learning needs of the children.

The present scenario of the education sector in the U.K. especially London is going through a rough patch. Teachers are the most important fighters in the battle to provide equal opportunity to all. They are considered as the intellectual life of the nation. If no steps are taken to bring a change and improvement in the factors that are stopping bright students from entering this job field, the education sector is in real danger. Immediate steps must be taken to realize the trans-formative form of education which will make the goal of quality education to all one step closer.

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How To Selecting a Tutoring Center for Kids With Learning Problems

It is obvious that most parents desire their children to have a high success rate in academics. However, parents feel confused when they discover that their child suffers from learning disability. However, feeling disillusioned is not a solution to the problem. Rather, selecting a tutoring center that have certified and trainer instructors to take care of children with learning disabilities is a step in the right direction.

As a parent, you need to select a tutoring center for kids with learning disabilities carefully. Some quick tips to help you make the right selection are as follows:

    • Check the infrastructure: A center might proclaim a lot of positive things for itself, but you need to evaluate whether it has the facilities it promises. You should try to find out if the center is well-equipped to handle the particular learning disability that your child is affected with.

 

    • Check the teacher-student ratio: You need to check how the tutoring center assigns an instructor for every student or a group of students. This is important because children with learning disabilities have different learning needs than their regular peers and should be partnered with such an instructor who has adequate experience in teaching the child with care, love and empathy.

 

    • Opt for several classes a week: As students with such difficulties need more attention, it is imperative to choose a tutoring center that offers several classes in a week. This way, your child can have better practice of whatever is being taught and retain the lessons better.

 

    • Check if the curriculum is structured to benefit your kid the most: Most of times, kids suffering from learning disabilities find it difficult to cope with studies. So, try to get your kid enrolled into a center that tries to strengthen the basic skills of your child or the areas he is weak in, and eventually moves on to the harder concepts. You should also find if the tutoring center offers personal, one-on-one attention or a group-oriented program, or a blend of both. While some students can work well with others in group sessions, some others, especially those struggling with their lessons would benefit more from private tutoring. Since several centers provide either one or the other, or have different fee structures depending on which type of program you select, you should check to make sure that your child can indeed benefit from such learning programs.

 

  • Are the parents involved? Centers that encourage involvement of parents have a better chance of addressing the problem of learning disability. If parents are involved in the learning sessions often, they can guide their kids in a similar direction even at home, thus making the learning process more effective.

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Guuide To Choose The Right School

Choosing the right school for any child is a tough decision. But choosing the right school for a child with special needs or learning difficulties is absolutely critical. Which is why I have written this article to hopefully give you some tips on how to choose the right school.

When you have a child with special needs, the RIGHT school can:

Be a fantastic source of support for you and your child.
Help your child reach their full potential.
Minimise the symptoms of your child’s disorder or difficulty.
Make your child feel comfortable and happy.
Allow your child to make friends and eliminate the chance of bullying.
Improve your child’s chances of a bright future full of opportunities and possibilities.

This all sounds fantastic and is what every parent wants for their child.

However, choosing the WRONG school can:

Give you little or no support.
Hold your child back.
Make their symptoms worse.
Cause your child to feel scared, alone and isolated.
Make it difficult for your child to make friends.
Increase the likelihood of bullying.
Limit the chance of your child having a bright future.

YES, this is how important it is to get the right school when your child has special needs. And unfortunately this is the reality of what could (and often does) happen.

I have had a lot of experience in this area with my own son:

When he was due to start school. I spent hours trawling the internet in search of the best local schools, in the best areas, with the highest league table scores and best reports.

This was a HUGE mistake.

If you have a child who does not have special needs or learning difficulties, then yes, do what I did, and look for those high performing schools in ‘good’ areas.

BUT, if your child has special needs, DO NOT DO THAT. I can’t stress that enough.

High performing schools are often high performing because they have very few children with special needs.

This means that:
a) they won’t have such good facilities and procedures in place for them.
b) they won’t have such good knowledge or experience with special needs or learning difficulties.

Also, high performing schools in ‘good’ areas often lack in diversity. This can make your child more likely to be subject to bullying. Where a school has a higher number of children with special needs and a greater level of diversity, children are more open to differences between them and less likely to pick on a child for being different.
The first school I sent my son to, I made this mistake. I sent him to a very high performing school in a typically rich, white christian area. The school had less than 1% special needs. And 0% cultural diversity.

Within a few months, my son was terrified to go to school. He hardly had any friends. He was being bullied. The teacher constantly came up to me at the end of the day to tell me what he’d done wrong that day or how much he’d struggled. He achieved barely any learning progress. And every time I went into a meeting with his teacher or special needs co ordinator, they would say things like, “we don’t know what to do with him”. And, “We think you should consider sending him to a special school”.

For far too long, I left him at that school, not realising the damage it was doing, or that things could be different.

After nearly 2 years I pulled him out. And not to send him to a special school (like they had suggested). I sent him to a school in a nearby town, which was the exact opposite of the school he had just left.

I sent him to a school with low performance rates. The highest percentage of special needs children in the area (12%) and was located in quite a ‘poor’ area with lots of diversity.

Within a few weeks he started to read simple words, write his name and count to 10. Things he had never been able to do. He enjoyed going to school (most days – we still had the occasional day he couldn’t be bothered, but no screaming fits). He made lots of friends. And all the teachers and staff their loved him.

Instead of having a teacher constantly moaning about him, they spoke about him with fondness and affection. It was fantastic.

After just over 4 glorious years at that school. Sadly he had to leave, because we had to emigrate from England to Australia.

But, when we started the search for a school in Australia, I had already learnt my lesson. So I immediately looked for a school that was:

Small (under 400 students) the less the better.
Had high rates of children with special needs and learning difficulties (minimum or 8%).
Had a very diverse mix of students, with children from lots of different economic, ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds.
A school that focused a lot of attention on social development and happy children.

We visited school after school after school within about a half an hour drive of our house. And eventually we found a school that met all my criteria. Woodville Primary School in Victoria.

My son has been there now for 6 months and he couldn’t be happier. He has lots of friends and the staff adore him. But most importantly he enjoys going to school. And I feel supported and listened to by his teacher and the other staff.

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