Personally, if I were to compare local teachers and China teachers on apple to apple basis, China teachers are on average more than 50% better than local ones (their 3 to 5 years full time early childhood training in China is 400% better than the locals). Having said that, not all China teachers are good of course. Maybe out of 10 China teachers, 7 China teachers are good; out of 10 local teachers, 3.5 of them are good. That's my estimate base on experience.
When helping children, stay positive as much as possible and focus "more on the strengths" than the weaknesses...
Tho' no two children are alike, there is still this saying that nothing is impossible. Have faith, that thru' all your patience will come the fruit of your labour. All we need is more knowledge to assist our children to the best of THEIR abilities.
(Updated 31 Dec 2008) Now that you know what your child will be required to do in Primary One for Mathematics, the question is how can you help prepare your child so that he/she can cope with the subject.
With proper guidance, it should not be too difficult for the average child to undergo the following progress schedule. Please note that this should NOT be taken as a definitive guide to gauge the ability of children!
New parents will have to come to terms with the great changes to Primary School Mathematics syllabus when their children enter Primary One. In fact, the older you are, the bigger the shock.
If you were born in the 60's or 70's, the early Primary math you were familiar with are probably addition, subtraction, and the memorization of multiplication times-tables up to 12. You will be most mistaken if you think your child is going to be graded on the same methods that had you aceing your math tests during your time. Unlike the rote learning you might be familiar with that focused on the application of specific techniques for solving math problems, the new Primary Math syllabus focuses on how much the child actually understands the fundamental concepts.
It is no longer enough that the child knows that 7+3=10 or 9x6=54. The child is expected to understand why, and how the same results can be attained by a variety of other means.
Understanding the Challenge:
Thinking outside of the box is a life skill, and is something that every parent wishes to cultivate in their child. This is because thinking outside the box just means our being able to solve problems and overcome challenges that we haven’t seen before in ways that we haven’t been explicitly taught. Outside of the box thinking is the end product of having developed a general excellence in thinking. Since it is impossible to succeed in the 21st century without being able to think well, acquiring thinking skills is an absolutely non-negotiable part of childhood education. On the other hand, it is a fact of life that parents need their children to do well within an educational system that still emphasizes rote learning, drilling, and not asking questions.
How do we balance these two concerns?
This was an article that I found a few months ago that helped me define what I was dealing with at home. The parts in bold are mine, link to complete article below for anyone interested (not pulling hair out since the rest of you seemed pretty comfortable where you are, lucky you!). I'll be checking out for a while. Need a mental break from all my worries.
How Can You Help Your Gifted Pre-schooler?
This is one of the most common questions I'm asked by parents, and it's an excellent one because there are very important things you can do during the toddler years, which will help your preschooler greatly.