It’s exam revision season, and I ask my child to revise 30 minutes on an e-learning platform, encouraging to write principal points along the way of the revision. The child decides to be smarty pants about it and says ‘my learning style is visual so don’t need to write down.’ Thank God for the knowledge of teaching, my response was ‘I am aware of the different learning styles and happy you are aware of your’s, but you still need to write down what you see in your words for better understanding’. I went on to say “you can use a mind map to draw out and map out your points.” All these were said in my best possible sarcastic mum voice.
However, I was very proud that the child identifies with an appropriate learning style. This got me thinking, how many parents can determine their child’s learning style? Having had the opportunities to teach, lecture and be an educator for several years, learners struggle to revise appropriately for exams because they have not identified their learning style. It should be said, learning style is not age restricted, and it can change over the years. A child can move from one style of learning at any stage of development and can also identify better ways of revising for exams. The critical point is, at any particular stage of the development of a child, a parent can ensure to recognise their child’s learning style and encourage it as a technique for learning.
There are several types of learning styles but the three main ones I will focus on are: listening, touching and seeing.
Listen: this is also identified as auditory. Children that fall into this learning style need to pay attention to what is being said. They hear and listening to the information and can retain it. When it comes to revision, these children can benefit from listening to podcast of the topic of their choice. Listening to music, of their choice, while revising can also be beneficial to these children. This is why some children can carry out verbal instructions and task better than other children because their strength lie in audio learning style.
Touch: customarily identified as kinesthetic or physical learning style. Children that fall into this bracket revise better with activities that are practical and hands on. Such activities can include tabletop games, problem-solving activities and task that require real or life experience. Children can either be descriptive or use a bullet point technique when taking down revision notes for an exam. Flash cards, puzzles and quizzes may come handy during revision. Tactile objectives are also beneficial.
See: children that fall within visual/sight learning style are observant of details. Descriptive writing and creative writing is at play here as they will write down, in details, what was observed. Children will enjoy revision with picture books, documentary. Reading can be a vital part of these children as they can use their creative eye to visualise the outcome. Mind maps and visual boards are also excellent exam revision techniques.
Children learn differently and have own mechanism that they use to revise for an exam. However, all learning styles can be used intermediately and across the board. Applying a set rule is not suggested because a child may learn better using the visual learning style on a particular subject but when another topic is introduced the listening technique works better.
NOTE: Parents should note that many technological resources can be used to make learning fun and engaging for their child. This should be taken advantage to the fullest.
Maintaining ethical standards is an essential part of the education profession which is referred to in several codes of conduct. The codes refer to an educator holding the highest integrity standard and maintaining trust in the profession. By so doing, conducts are up helped, and the proper administration of fairness is carried out. However significant educators are, they are part of the flawed system of society that promotes unequal opportunities but at the same time putting the learner first, which can be a challenge.
When it comes to standards, the profession will have to question itself based on a code of conduct of being an officer of education. Several questions have been raised by scholars on how an educator can stand to have fairness, not lose the trust of the learners, uphold the law and administration of fairness and at the same time be an officer of education. Contradictions, bias and prejudices are sure to happen. The educator’s decision on making the profession look good and maintaining trust can be seen as a double edge sword.
The ethical standard is questioned when learners are indicated to have been failed by the education institution. However, an educator must promote fearlessly and take advantage of legal points in the learner’s interests. As Paulo Freire puts it “the educator has the duty of not being neutral”. What an ethical perplexity for an educator.
The word ‘intentional’ has been on my mind for several weeks. It means being deliberate, calculated or conscious. In the time, space and environment we presently live in, I believe as parents we have to be intentional towards our children; otherwise, several mundane things will take up our time. As I stroll through the different social media platforms, I see how easy it is to be distracted and allow what is visual govern the mind. You must make up your mind to:
Be intentional about speaking with your child.
Be intentional about listening to your child.
Be intentional about engaging with your child.
Be intentional about playing with your child.
Be intentional about being firm with your child.
Be intentional about showing love to your child.
Be intentional about the wellbeing of your child.
Be intentional about helping your child to learn.
Be intentional about being consistent with your child.
Be intentional about taking a family break with your child.
There are many distractions in society today, and this does not exempt the family. Severally, I have been approached to take on more demanding professional position. However, I weigh it against my work-life balance because I am intentional as a parent not to have the scale tip over. It is understandable that not everyone may be in a position to pick and chose when to make income; however, the ability to be intentional ensures we as parents give it a second thought before going ahead with a decision. Being a parent does not always come easy, but, the act of being intentional helps develop the culture of family principles and ethos that the children can later appreciate.
Especially in a cosmopolitan town/city with inadequate public transportation. I believe women that have children and do not drive have extra special powers. For a woman with young children, driving is a necessity and not a luxury.
2. Be Economically Viable
Great that maternity leave payment, zero or work contract hours, and in some cases, government supported payment can help support women financially. Learning a skill or trade can contribute to keeping the cash flow coming in. There is always something to buy when you are out with your child or yourself. The internet is full of cash flow opportunities for women, however, ensure it is a genuine stream of income. It can be time to sharpen that passion or skill you have and make it financially viable.
3. Develop Professionally
This is called CPD, continuing professional development. When the child/ren are all of school age, what happens to you professionally? It is never too late to continue or start a new profession.
4. Positive Mind Feeding
Women tend to have low self-esteem, depression or psychosis during this period. Reading a book can help elevate this. Romantic or motivational books are suggestions as it feeds emotion positively and helps release feel good hormones. Also doing something you enjoy or a challenging task, when accomplished, can contribute to release these positive hormones.
5. Liaise with Professionals
Majority of professionals working with a woman while raising children are there to help and offer positive support to the family. Use these professionals to your advantage. We are glad for the World Wide Web but these individuals have gone through rigorous educational process and have hands on experiences that can be taped into to benefit you and your family.
In my almost two decades of being in childcare education, I have not come across a child having torn earlobe from participating in physical education in the UK. My aim on this topic is to bring a balance equation from both a professional and parent perspective. Research shows no incident or accidents of pupils wearing earrings or studs has occurred during physical activity or swimming. I will be glad to be proven wrong, and the evidence based on a real ratio. The keyword such as ‘Serious accidents have occurred as a result of contact between pupils wearing earrings or studs’are included in school policies and educational establishments., but none on a real accident that occurred. It bothers me that the same swimming pool the public swims is the same pool our children’s activity takes place. The public is not told to take off their earring before swimming, just a thought. In a nursery school setting, I can understand toddlers pulling other toddlers earring, which can result to torn earlobe. However, a more realistic explanation should be provided as to why children in most UK primary schools are being instructed not to wear stud earring.
Parents are baffled as to why this rule exist and have asked questions on various parenting forums on if a child has being hurt from wearing stud earring. As a parent, I have experienced this too, thou the earring was the tiniest nose stud. I believe it is more unhygienic to keep having the earring taken in and out of the ears due to an infection transferred from day to day hand germs. As a childcare professional I understand rules of risk assessment are put in place to prevent any litigation. However these rules have to be based on common sense, cultural diversity and respect for the choice of parents for their children.