Edge to education
WHETHER it is basketball, karate, science club or theatre, activities that allow children to explore a wide scope of interests now have a more prominent place in schools nationwide.
This month, Bright Kids looks at core aspects of gaining a solid extracurricular experience at private and international schools.
“In a survey held among visitors to the recent Private and International School Fair in July, parents ranked fees as the most important consideration when choosing an international school for their children, followed by location and curriculum offered.
“Teachers, school culture and values, as well as reputation came next,” says Nickie Yew, co- founder and director of fair organiser Mint Communications.
Yew goes on to say that most parents are aware of the importance of an all- rounded education and have begun to seek suitable opportunities in their children’s potential schools.
“This means that in addition to preparing students academically, there should also be opportunities for students to develop abilities in sports, music, art, drama, dance and more. Therefore, it is becoming increasingly important for schools to provide faciltiies for these activities.”
Parents play a significant role in encouraging co- curricular involvement among children.
Common understanding on the importance of these activities has evolved since previous decades to align with the principles of holistic education so widely applied today.
ECA ( extracurricular activities) coordinator at elc International School Jessie Mohanraj says, “Today, the working world has become more competitive and ECA can give candidates an edge.
“Regardless of personal sentiments, I believe students these days would join extracurricular activities to beef up their future resumes, something people in my generation and older would not have considered doing.
“Parents today, understanding the significance of these activities, definitely put more importance on them and ensure that their children go for different lessons after school or on the weekends.”
Besides parents, the involvement of teachers also dictate ECA interest and involvement among their students.
“Inspired teachers make for inspiring ECA. There has to be something about activity that draws a student to it, and you would be hard pressed to find a well thought out activity that has been planned by a teacher who does not want to carry out the activity in the first place,” opines Jessie.
With schools everywhere in the country offering an extensive host of activities that appeal to a wide range of interests, teachers can go the extra mile in drawing out the best in students based on their individual skills, talents and personalities.
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