Sylvester Kay-Adade: Every Child Deserves Quality Education During This Lockdown

A major concern for me, over the past week, has been how to educate/stimulate pupils and students in Nigerian public schools during this extensive lock down period. Majority of the children receiving any formal education right now are those in private schools.
The private – primary and secondary – schools are about the only ones that can afford to implement e-learning protocols. However, the vast majority of Nigerian pupils and students attend public schools, so for the time being, most aren’t learning anything academic.
This means that a lot of them will lose a whole term, or worse, a whole year of school, and fall far behind (than they already are/were) their peers in private schools. So in a bid to provide a solution, I considered having a YouTube channel, in partnership with teachers of basic subjects (like English Language and Mathematics).
However, there are 2 challenges. First, there would either have to be enough content for classes by level – Primary/Basic 1-6, Jss 1-3 and SS1-3, or (the better option) classes by age groups – ages 2-5, ages 7-10, and ages 11-16. Secondly, there is the possibility that because of financial constraints, most of their guardians or parents may not have laptops/tabs and WiFi modems or smart phones (with enough data) to stream the content for long periods of time, talk more of several times a week.
I concluded that since the target audience may find it challenging accessing online content, YouTube may not work.
Next, I considered working with a radio station, as this may be more practical for their parents/guardians. However, off the bat, the first issue is children have short attention span, so without constant supervision, audio might not be too effective, especially for a subject like Mathematics.
This led to my final consideration:
Instead of subjects, the focus could be on puzzles and/or problems with quantitative and verbal elements – according to age groups. They may not learn anything new, but those could help keep them sharp and mentally-stimulated. So maybe the best option for the masses would be to broadcast verbal and quantitative problems catered to various age groups on a regular basis – possibly, a different group at a specific time every weekday.
While seeking a partner for this initiative, I learned that 9Mobile Nigeria had started providing free data to access certain e-learning portals to support the Federal Government’s e-learning program for students during this lockdown. Some of those portals include, MobileClassroom and Schoolgate.
Kudos to 9Mobile for taking the initiative. I wonder if and when the other national carriers (MTN Nigeria, Airtel Nigeria and Globacom Nigeria) will make similar arrangements.
This initiative will, in no doubt, help those with access to smartphones, but those without access to those devices will still be at a disadvantage. So, we’re back to square one.
I wonder if there are those equally concerned and willing to partner with me or support the radio programing angle (#RadioSchoolNigeria), as a palliative/temporary measure, of course?
The use of classrooms is still the best teaching method for children and teens. Please note that it might not be profitable, monetarily, but I believe it will go a long way in leveling the academic playing field and enriching the lives of our younger ones.
The post Sylvester Kay-Adade: Every Child Deserves Quality Education During This Lockdown appeared first on BellaNaija – Showcasing Africa to the world. Read today!.

Your Child’s Academic Mediocrity or Failure Should Not Be Treated as a Stain on Your White!

The video of a man scolding his son for having a poor results went viral on social media, a couple of days ago. In the video, the father can be seen slapping the boy while lamenting on how poor his school result is, while someone, presumably the mother, recorded the video. At the same time, we heard a voice trying to placate the man.

The dad pays $21k USD as tuition fee every month and his son was skipping classes, failed maths & English
He Only passed music pic.twitter.com/h5TU9UBPt5
— JAGS (@EtniesJags) April 23, 2020

According to the image of the results,  the son had failed all his subjects – except Music and Geography and was absent for his Mathematics and English exams – the two ‘most important’ subjects.
There are a few things to note here:
Aside from failing, the boy did not bother to show up for two subjects – and the parents did not notice.
The boy passed music with a distinction.
The boy tried to explain and the father was too angry to listen.
In the midst of it all, the mother deemed it fit to make a video.
It can hurt deeply when parents have huge dreams and certain expectations of their kids and it seems like the kids are not rising up to expectations. But when it comes to education and the academic journey of a child, many factors come to play.
Many parents need to enlighten their children on the value and importance of education. A lot of children just go to school because they are at that phase where kids go to school. Many always pass their exams because that is what is required of them.
It becomes different when you explain to your kids that education is a journey, one that will help them achieve their dreams and future plans. Rather than push your kids to go to school and pass their exams, it is important to educate them on why they are doing what they do. That way, they won’t quickly open their books and pretend to read when they see you coming. You wouldn’t have to force them to study either.
It is also very important, as parents, to monitor your children’s academic progress. Parenting is more than spending huge amounts of money on your kids’ education or paying for textbooks and excursions. It is also about monitoring their assignments, going through their books, checking their grades by subjects, studying with them, having a discussion with their teachers to know how well they are performing in school and also having a discussion with your kids to know whether or not they are struggling with their academics. You should never wait until your kids fail in school before you pay attention to their academics.
What some parents do is that they visit their children’s schools unannounced, meet with their class teachers and ask about the academic performance and general behaviour of the child. That way, they know the child’s strengths and weaknesses and how to help.
If it ever gets to that stage where your child can conveniently skip school or be absent during examinations, then it means you have done a poor job in monitoring your children’s academic progress.
Although many parents want their kids to do well in school, they are yet to familiarise themselves with the academic struggles the child faces. Some of these could be dyslexia, bullying, fear, poor mental health, stress, bad learning environment. Some kids read but do not understand and while some can read to understand, they still find it difficult to express themselves while writing. Some kids have sight and hearing problems but their parents are either too busy, abusive or too careless to notice.
Many parents have beaten and nearly killed their kids because of poor grades without realising that the kid suffers from dyslexia. Also called reading disability, dyslexia affects areas of the brain that process language. Children who have dyslexia usually have trouble learning or learning as fast as other kids.

This was me with my son! It was frustrating, most especially paying so much to give him the best of education & I also allowed others beat him.Today, I regret every of that behaviour. I apologised & sought my son’s forgiveness when he turned 18.It turned out my son is DYSLEXIC https://t.co/nCBZ2GgSJk
— Aisha Yesufu (@AishaYesufu) April 23, 2020

Bullying, fear and poor learning environment also affects kids a lot. Many students are scared of certain teachers and this kills their interest in that subject. It also stunts a child’s learning ability.
It is also very important to create a really good relationship with your kids. Establish an environment where your children can open up to you whenever they are struggling in school or anywhere else. Most kids do not talk about their failures because they are scared of their parents. But at the end of the day, it reflects in their grades.
A lot of people believe that once they pay huge sums of money for their child’s education, the child must pass by fire by force. It doesn’t work that way. It is not rocket science. You have to nurture and ‘water’ your kids brainpower and then watch them produce amazing results. One way to do this is to listen to them. In that video, the child was willing to explain but the father wasn’t ready to listen. That would have been the perfect time to know what the problem truly is. When your kids know that they can talk to you, it boosts their confidence and helps them make good life decisions. If they can’t talk to you, then they’ll seek for solutions elsewhere.
Come to think of it? Why are we seeing this video in the first place?! Why is the mother recording this? Is it to humiliate the child further? Or is it because we now live in a world where we are so quick to whip out our phones and make videos? If your first instinct, when your child fails in school, is to take photos and videos, then you are clearly going a poor job as a mother.
While it is natural to get angry when a child fails, it is very important to realise that a child’s failure in school is also as a result of the parent’s failure in ensuring that the child is academically sound. Both parties have failed.
If the child can pass Music and Geography, such child can also pass other subjects, if given the right encouragement and motivation to keep pushing. This does not automatically mean the child wants to become a musician in future, Music is probably the easiest subject for him, it is, thus, important to find out why other subjects are difficult for him to learn.
At the end of the day, parents should invest better in their children’s education if they want good results. And no, it’s not all about money.
P.S: Failing in school is not the end of the world. The most important thing in life is to keep moving.
The post Your Child’s Academic Mediocrity or Failure Should Not Be Treated as a Stain on Your White! appeared first on BellaNaija – Showcasing Africa to the world. Read today!.