✓ What is SMART-education
✓ What approaches must a modern school be guided by
Narrated by Oksana Bukovska, Director of Creative International School for Children in Kyiv, teacher of top category, PhD in Pedagogy, author of more than 100 scientific and methodological works and course books.
«As teachers, we are constantly facing the question: what the education must be like? Nowadays, many educational tasks can be solved with online-instruments. That’s why it is vitally important to understand the purpose of education, since sometimes a paradox occurs: the more we study, the more we know; the more we know, the more we forget; the more we forget, the less we know; then why do we have to study?»
The answer to this question is complex for everyone. A Henry Ford said, thinking is the hardest work there is.
Modern school must implement in the process of education such disciplines as the comprehensive solving of problems, development of comprehensive thinking (critical, creative, logical, systematic); human interaction, emotional intellect, the ability to form one’s own opinion and make decisions; the ability to negotiate and mental adaptivity; and must be oriented at satisfying both educational needs and real-life challenges.
Many school nowadays, and primarily the CISC, break the stereotypes of traditional education, try to keep the best traits from the traditional system, enrich them with new ideas and pass to the methods of “teaching how to learn” and “adaptation to all conditions and changes of life”.
“In CISC, we scrupulously monitor the global trends and came to the conclusion that it is essential to develop the SMART education, i.e. Self-directed, Motivated, Adaptive, Resource-enriched, Technology embedded.”
As concerns the Self-directed aspect, we must teach the child how to catch the fish instead of giving one. That’s why we have to know how to train such independence.
Speaking of motivation, we often hear that the children nowadays are not very motivated. Why? The answer lies in the education paradigm. Samuil Marshak has a wonderful poem that describes the situation perfectly, about a boy who exhausted the adults with his never-ending “whys?”, but as soon as he grew up, they started giving him the ready-made answers, and ever since he didn’t ask any “Why?” at all.
“If the parents deprive their children of the opportunity to ask questions from the earliest age by imposing their own answers, the child looses the motivation to anything at all. That’s why, when the new students come to CISC, we watcch carefully for these little bits of curiosity, and try to develop them by all means”.
Adaptivity / adaptation – it’s not only about a child’s adaptation to the school environment and conditions, but about adaptivity in broader terms. Within a school, different age categories interact: children, teenagers, tutors, teachers of middle and older age. And everyone has a certain life experience respective to the age category and the psychology of that age category. In order for the teacher and the school to be modern, not only the student must adapt to school, but the teacher must adapt to the student as well.
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“A slow sort of country!” said the Queen. “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!”
“This Red Queen’s rule renders the main point of “teaching how to learn” ideology: if we wish to be successful in the XXI century – the century of new challenges, new technologies and, most of all, the new generation – we, as teachers, must be ready to run twice as fast in order to keep up with our own children adn students, and, moreover, to make the greatest discovery to gether with them – the discovery of their own selves”.
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As concerns the programmes, we adapt them to the children’s level, thus giving them a possibility of consequent development. And one of the most important issues is preserving that ability to ask “Why?”.
Resources. In CISC, we pay a great deal of attention to modern resources and technologies – IT, science and research, digital technologies.
The whole educational process in CISC involves the development of communication, collaboration, critical and creative thinking, research skills. Аnd teachers are those professionals who cooperate with children instead of simply explicating the material. And that is the approach that must be put into the basis of modern school and modern education.
Reference and information materials:
1. Adapting Education to the Information Age. The White Paper for ICT in Education of Korea. MEST and KERIS (2011).
2. E-Learning in the Republic of Korea. Dae Joon Hwang, Hye-Kyung Yang, Hyeonjin Kim. UNESCO Institute for IT in Education. 2010.
3. KOREAN CONCEPT OF SMART-EDUCATION: GENERAL EDUCATION, DIGITAL TEXTBOOKS AND SMART-SCHOOLS\ L.M. Korsunska, Gifted Children Institute affiliated with the National Academy of Pedagogical Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv city, Ukraine.