Giv­ing chil­dren a head start

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Higher Education -

MALAYSIA’S ed­u­ca­tional pol­icy has gone through some big changes for the past few years.

One of such changes is the Kuriku­lum Stan­dard Sekolah Ren­dah (KSSR) syl­labus.

This syl­labus came to re­place the Kuriku­lum Bersepadu Sekolah Ren­dah (KBSR) in the pri­mary school sys­tem in 2011.

The KSSR fo­cuses more on teach­ing “Higher-Or­der Think­ing Skills” (HOTS) than “Lower-Or­der Think­ing Skills” (LOTS).

While LOTS lead stu­dents to mem­o­rise con­cepts, HOTS train them to syn­the­sise and an­a­lyse in­for­ma­tion and knowl­edge to solve prob­lems and make de­ci­sions.

Stu­dents need to be equipped with HOTS for the later stages of their lives af­ter school­ing. It is par­tic­u­larly true in to­day’s so­ci­ety where an­a­lyt­i­cal, crit­i­cal and cre­ative minds are in de­mand more than ever be­fore.

Eye Level is an en­rich­ment pro­gramme de­vel­oped by Daekyo, a lead­ing ed­u­ca­tional ser­vice provider that was founded in 1976 in South Korea.

Help­ing stu­dents be­come prob­lem-solvers, crit­i­cal thinkers and life­long learn­ers, Eye Level has come up with ro­bust cur­ric­ula based on re­search, thus serv­ing as a model through­out the world.

The Eye Level cur­ric­ula help stu­dents learn both LOTS and HOTS and ap­ply these skills in and out of school.

Eye Level Math trains stu­dents to use LOTS and HOTS through­out its 32 lev­els.

First, stu­dents master Ba­sic Think­ing Math (BTM) by prac­tis­ing ad­di­tion, sub­trac­tion, mul­ti­pli­ca­tion and di­vi­sion.

They then learn Crit­i­cal Think­ing Math (CTM) deal­ing with sit­u­a­tion-based ques­tions.

To un­der­stand the ba­sic math­e­mat­i­cal con­cepts of BTM, stu­dents need to use LOTS.

On the other hand, to ap­ply such ba­sic con­cepts in CTM, they should de­velop HOTS.

Eye Level English first helps stu­dents de­velop LOTS.

To de­velop these skills, they fol­low in­struc­tions to learn ba­sic lan­guage skills through phon­ics and oral flu­ency ex­er­cises.

Af­ter gain­ing a ba­sic level of com­pe­tence in English, stu­dents con­tinue to fol­low guided in­struc­tions to de­velop HOTS. At this level, they prac­tise read­ing and writ­ing.

To im­prove their read­ing com­pre­hen­sion, stu­dents learn to an­a­lyse a va­ri­ety of texts, in­clud­ing lit­er­ary works.

In this way, they feel more com­fort­able in deal­ing with cog­ni­tively chal­leng­ing ques­tions and ideas.

Car­ry­ing out lin­guis­tic and cog­ni­tive ex­er­cises that are sys­tem­at­i­cally or­gan­ised through 14 lev­els, stu­dents grad­u­ally be­come more pro­fi­cient in English.

Train­ing stu­dents to de­velop both LOTS and HOTS, Eye Level English not only helps them in school but it also lays a strong foun­da­tion for their fu­ture ca­reer, thus en­cour­ag­ing them to be com­pet­i­tive pro­fes­sion­als.

As men­tioned be­fore, the KSSR em­pha­sises HOTS, which meant stu­dents will be en­cour­aged to prac­tise these skills in school.

Con­se­quently, schools will have to change their method­ol­ogy of teach­ing and eval­u­a­tion.

To de­velop HOTS, stu­dents need to be­come more in­de­pen­dent, con­fi­dent and ac­tive in learn­ing, or­gan­is­ing and us­ing knowl­edge and skills. This idea is com­pat­i­ble with Self-Di­rected Learn­ing (SDL), pri­mary ap­proach of Eye Level.

Through­out the SDL process, stu­dents learn to take ini­tia­tive and re­spon­si­bil­ity.

Such be­hav­iour is closely linked to HOTS rather than to LOTS.

■ For more in­for­ma­tion, look out for the ad­ver­tise­ment in this StarSpe­cial.

Eye Level Math trains stu­dents to use LOTS and HOTS through­out its 32 lev­els.

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