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Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Getting your child into that dream Primary school is just the start of a 6 year journey. Discuss issues you face with supporting your child's studies in Primary schools.
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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby ammonite » Fri Oct 30, 2015 10:10 am

jedamum wrote:Ammonite,
Despite starting DS1 on note taking in primary school, he didn't do any in sec school. Notes were given to study and he said so many important stuff, how to take notes ? And so little time, for the time time spent making notes, can use to read up, digest and catch up with other subjects. Is note taking a gender issue ? I like to do notes for study. Dh thinks it doesn't work for him. Ds1 feels it is a chore to re write notes though he did jot down small stuff or highlight on the printed notes or book. For DS2....his Chinese and math text book are all very clean inside !


There are different ways to do it. Highlighting is one way and I see that your ds does it, map making is another way. The value of it is in the process itself, not always the physical evidence. In order to make notes or highlight, you have to assimilate the material, sort and order and various people have their ways of doing it.

Ds2 CL book is covered with writings (and drawings). His book is the cannot-give-anyone type - written all over. But when I look through, I can tell exactly what the teacher has taught, from similar looking characters, extra vocab, to lines indicating the pauses for reading. And when he looks through, he is able to recall the lesson well. So I know his CL teacher taught well and I rarely go through his textbook with him.

Ds1's teachers get them to annotate and pick out key words/clues etc. Science teacher demands that they highlight even the notes she give, and she will check for evidence. So that is very good groundwork. He has started compiling flash cards for frequently misspelled words and things he tend to forget. I told him that as he work through the material, he should start curating and condensing so that he is not left with a big pile of notes at the end of the day.

As they proceed higher up, they must learn to skimp read to identify the most relevant authors, texts and chapters before tunnelling in.

ammonite
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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby wonderm » Fri Oct 30, 2015 10:43 am

ammonite wrote:
jedamum wrote:Ammonite,
Despite starting DS1 on note taking in primary school, he didn't do any in sec school. Notes were given to study and he said so many important stuff, how to take notes ? And so little time, for the time time spent making notes, can use to read up, digest and catch up with other subjects. Is note taking a gender issue ? I like to do notes for study. Dh thinks it doesn't work for him. Ds1 feels it is a chore to re write notes though he did jot down small stuff or highlight on the printed notes or book. For DS2....his Chinese and math text book are all very clean inside !


There are different ways to do it. Highlighting is one way and I see that your ds does it, map making is another way. The value of it is in the process itself, not always the physical evidence. In order to make notes or highlight, you have to assimilate the material, sort and order and various people have their ways of doing it.

Ds2 CL book is covered with writings (and drawings). His book is the cannot-give-anyone type - written all over. But when I look through, I can tell exactly what the teacher has taught, from similar looking characters, extra vocab, to lines indicating the pauses for reading. And when he looks through, he is able to recall the lesson well. So I know his CL teacher taught well and I rarely go through his textbook with him.

Ds1's teachers get them to annotate and pick out key words/clues etc. Science teacher demands that they highlight even the notes she give, and she will check for evidence. So that is very good groundwork. He has started compiling flash cards for frequently misspelled words and things he tend to forget. I told him that as he work through the material, he should start curating and condensing so that he is not left with a big pile of notes at the end of the day.

As they proceed higher up, they must learn to skimp read to identify the most relevant authors, texts and chapters before tunnelling in.


I think different students may just have different learning styles. Just to share about my boys. For primary school, they may have written down some notes on the textbooks when teachers asked them to do so in class, but not much. By Sec school, they are more proactive. They will write down notes on notes given by teachers, or write them down on a small notebook. During revision time, they will organise and type out their own notes. I agree it is a good practice and the learning is in the making of these notes. However, for Maths and Sciences, I think doing practice questions is also very important. So they do need to balance the time spent on different types of revision activities.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby ammonite » Fri Oct 30, 2015 11:25 am

wonderm wrote:I think different students may just have different learning styles. Just to share about my boys. For primary school, they may have written down some notes on the textbooks when teachers asked them to do so in class, but not much. By Sec school, they are more proactive. They will write down notes on notes given by teachers, or write them down on a small notebook. During revision time, they will organise and type out their own notes. I agree it is a good practice and the learning is in the making of these notes. However, for Maths and Sciences, I think doing practice questions is also very important. So they do need to balance the time spent on different types of revision activities.


Yes definitely. Personal preferences and learning needs are important.
An old economics professor I used to work with said he could generally predict how well a student will do just by looking through the student's file. I thought that was an interesting observation.

(not saying that students who don't make notes etc will not do well. Some students with very good memory or ability to master difficult material through other means can manage without notes. Some very exceptional ones can really get through quite a few years with minimal effort. But at some point up the educational ladder, all will need to be able to sift through vast amount of information and have some way of keeping track. )

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby wonderm » Fri Oct 30, 2015 12:13 pm

ammonite wrote:
wonderm wrote:I think different students may just have different learning styles. Just to share about my boys. For primary school, they may have written down some notes on the textbooks when teachers asked them to do so in class, but not much. By Sec school, they are more proactive. They will write down notes on notes given by teachers, or write them down on a small notebook. During revision time, they will organise and type out their own notes. I agree it is a good practice and the learning is in the making of these notes. However, for Maths and Sciences, I think doing practice questions is also very important. So they do need to balance the time spent on different types of revision activities.


Yes definitely. Personal preferences and learning needs are important.
An old economics professor I used to work with said he could generally predict how well a student will do just by looking through the student's file. I thought that was an interesting observation.

(not saying that students who don't make notes etc will not do well. Some students with very good memory or ability to master difficult material through other means can manage without notes. Some very exceptional ones can really get through quite a few years with minimal effort. But at some point up the educational ladder, all will need to be able to sift through vast amount of information and have some way of keeping track. )


Agree with you. Back to the topic of this thread, while tuition can certainly be helpful, it can also be harmful if the student gets used to being spoon fed. It is better to learn to self study.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby Funz » Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:30 pm

janet88 wrote:whoever is the smart aleck who 'invented' stellar? :slapshead: :rant: :stupid:
even when daughter was in p1, her teacher already told me it doesn't help at all. that is the time to lay foundation for grammar.
her school has worksheets for English to back up and also 'Primary English' is in the booklist...you know what, there is no time to do anything in Primary English. thanks to that dumb stellar syllabus.


Just because it does not suit your kids' learning style does not mean that it is dumb.

You may have your frustrations with some of the teachers you encountered and with the education system but please don't go calling people smart aleck just because you do not agree with their curriculum.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby Funz » Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:43 pm

ammonite wrote:
Funz wrote:I find Stellar good, especially so for lower primary. Maybe I myself am not a rote learner and neither are my kids. It also depends very much on how the teacher delivers the lessons. Just because the lessons are not specifically labelled and chaptered according to grammar rules does not mean that it is not taught.

What is the point of drilling into kids all the rules if you cannot get the kid interested or even comfortable with the language. With language, they must want to use it, dare to use it and be comfortable using it, that is when they will do well in it. I like the STELLAR curriculum especially if it is executed properly by the teachers. It encourages the children to use the language.


I think you are right that it depends on the teachers' delivery and students' learning style. The upper primary teachers I know hated it, perhaps because they are taking top classes. They say it is tedious and slow. The lower primary teachers who didn't like it are old timers and they take very weak students. They say it is impossible for these weak kids to learn well enough from stellar, these kids need drilling. They have to add in their own grammar drill work.

My ds2 enjoys the fun elements in stellar, but I notice that there is extra grammar work added by the school or teacher. LSP students are excused from the extra work. Not sure if they do their own grammar drills.


According to DD's teachers, STELLAR actually require the teachers to think more about how they can deliver the lessons. It definitely mean that the teachers have to do more with the kids compared to the traditional way of telling the kids the grammar rules and handing out worksheets for kids to practise these rules. Teaching becomes more interactive instead of the I tell, you do method of the past. DD's teachers still do give out some grammar drill work but minimal and it is just to reinforce what was done in class.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby ammonite » Fri Oct 30, 2015 2:01 pm

Funz wrote:According to DD's teachers, STELLAR actually require the teachers to think more about how they can deliver the lessons. It definitely mean that the teachers have to do more with the kids compared to the traditional way of telling the kids the grammar rules and handing out worksheets for kids to practise these rules. Teaching becomes more interactive instead of the I tell, you do method of the past. DD's teachers still do give out some grammar drill work but minimal and it is just to reinforce what was done in class.


Yes, I agree with that. I do see a well intended initiative that is based on researched, developmentally appropriate framework. I had this discussion with a teacher before and she said the difficulty is in the implementation. Training period for teachers is short, class time is limited and there is so much to cover, and the class size is also bigger than what should be ideal for a stellar-like programme.

But as we all know, there is no one size fit all.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby slmkhoo » Fri Oct 30, 2015 2:54 pm

ammonite wrote:In lower levels, kids need a certain amount of drilling to get the basics right. Drilling is not spoon feeding. It is boring but essential, and is best coupled with other forms of learning so that the kids can see the basic rules in action - application.

Spoon feeding is what happens when either basics or application knowledge is missing. The teacher gives out ready notes and drill the kids on the answers for commonly asked questions.

I agree with your distinction and the need for application along with the drilling. I haven't had a kid in Pr school for too many years to comment on what goes on there now.

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby violin_lover » Fri Oct 30, 2015 3:27 pm

slmkhoo wrote:
violin_lover wrote:
janet88 wrote:teaching less means the child in primary school will probably not understand much. if the child doesn't understand, it means he/she won't be able to get work done. that explains why the tuition industry is booming. composition needs time to teach, but how is it possible to do so within 35 minutes in a class of 40?


I agreed totally. At young age, in general, "spoon feeding" is the way. In my opinion, "teach less, learn more" is not suitable for anybody. I believe on the old school of thought where you need to build a solid foundation first. If a kid does not have a solid foundation, it WILL HAVE a "longer-lasting negative effects."

I would argue that having a good foundation does not mean that spoon-feeding is needed. Encouraging the child to learn by other means AS WELL AS some teaching may have better long-term results.


My definition of "spoon feeding" is actually drilling. I totally disagree with "move away from teacher-up-front teaching" at primary school (which you previously advocate).

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Re: Your kid must have tuition... OR ELSE...

Postby Searchingyou » Fri Oct 30, 2015 4:40 pm

I am against teaching up front too.. but my child cannot catch up/understand what is the teacher teaching ,especially Maths. I normally will revise with him after his teacher has completed a topic. When I asked him abt minute / hour hand, he is clueless. I am curious wat had went wrong..As I am a working parent,I can only guide him in his education instead of TEACH him which repeating what his teacher is doing. So, we have decided to send him for tuition next year.

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