Nurturing critical thinkers
MALAYSIA’S educational policy has undergone significant changes over the past few years. One such change is the Kurikulum Standard Sekolah Rendah (KSSR) syllabus, which replaced 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, especially in today’s society where analytical, critical and creative minds are in demand.
Eye Level is an enrichment programme developed by Daekyo, a leading educational service provider founded in 1976 in South Korea. With the aim of helping students become problem solvers, critical thinkers and lifelong learners, Eye Level has come up with robust curriculums based on thorough research. The Eye Level curriculums help students learn and apply LOTS and HOTS 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) by tackling situation-based questions.
To understand the basic concepts of BTM, students need to use LOTS. To apply such basic concepts in CTM, they should develop HOTS.
Eye Level English first helps students develop LOTS by following instructions to learn basic language skills through phonics and oral fluency exercises.
After gaining a basic level of English competence, 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. This way, they feel more comfortable 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.
In training students to develop LOTS and HOTS, Eye Level English not only helps them in school but also lays a strong foundation for their future careers, encouraging them to be competitive professionals.
The KSSR’s emphasis on HOTS means that 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 their knowledge and skills. This idea is compatible with Self-Directed Learning (SDL), the 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 details, look out for the advertisement in this StarSpecial.
The Eye Level programme utilises Self-Directed Learning, which encourages students to develop independent learning skills.