The educational program is planned to ensure the total growth of the individual, though a premium is placed on the development of his mental and intellectual ability. The following four tips will be considered when planning educational programs.
When a government designs a program of activities to be undertaken by the school, the objectives of the program are defined to meet the needs of the state.
This could eventually lead to a conflict between the expectations of society and the objectives of the school on one hand, and the expectations/interests of the student and the objectives of the school on the other hand.
In fact, the objectives of the learner are so often taken for granted that they almost become irrelevant.
The discipline-centered curriculum operates with the assumption that all the participants are also presumed to operate within the same range of cognitive ability.
But the child-centered or psychological curriculum is preferable.
Unlike the discipline-centered curriculum which is rigidly structured to realize the objective for which the state designed the education program, the child-centered curriculum gives priority to the identification, promotion, and realization of the objectives of the learner.
And since the needs, interests, and goals of the learners are recognized and appreciated by the psychological curriculum, learning under it becomes more interesting and more result-oriented.
The educational program is planned to ensure the total growth of the individual, though a premium is placed on the development of his mental and intellectual ability.
The blueprint that maps out a set of learning activities for performance by the learner to make him achieve certain goals prescribed by the educational system is known as a curriculum or work program.
The curriculum forms the core of the educational activities in the learning process. Really, there are three basic elements in the educational process, namely: the teacher, the learner, and the curriculum. But the curriculum is the central element that connects the other two.
The curriculum comprises the broad general framework of educational activities organized by a school or an educational institution.
It also incorporates all the subjects and activities under the auspices of the school or for which the school is responsible.
It contains the experiences and activities recommended for the student by the school to change the learner’s behavior, acquire or reinforce certain skills and prepare him to fit adequately into society.
The work program is mainly determined by the national education philosophy of a nation. In Nigeria, for instance, the decision of the government on the directions and dimensions of educational programs are so contained in the National Policy on Education.
The student should familiarize himself/herself with the philosophy and adopt the principles upon which it was designed.
The timetable is an arrangement of the activities of the school in a logical sequence. It is a chart that supplies information on the hours of the day allocated to different curricular and co-curricular activities.
The length of time allocated to each subject may be decided with a consciousness of the age of the student.
While young children have a short attention span and may not be able to concentrate for more than twenty to thirty-five minutes, undergraduates can effectively listen to a good delivery for two hours.
The nature of some courses also determines their location on the timetable. For instance, Mathematics is usually scheduled for morning hours because it is believed that it aids clear thinking and that its comprehension requires cool weather.
Conversely, courses such as Literature, Art, and Music are scheduled for afternoon hours. Subjects such as Mathematics and English that require exercises may be allocated double hours periodically, and courses and vocational fields that require practicals should be allotted many more hours for practicals.
The student’s ability to take good notes will always be required in all aspects of his studies. He will have to take notes at lectures, tutorials, seminars, practicals,s or while writing projects or studying textbooks.
Note-taking enhances the concentration of the student and gets him actively involved in learning activities.
The students’ note is also an inestimable treasure of records for the main ideas and valuable details of previous studies that may be an asset for revision and examination purposes.
There are two major sources from which students can take notes. There are (1) from lectures and (11) from textbooks. Students seldom take notes from textbooks due to laziness and/or ignorance.
Most students assume that the information gathered from lectures is sufficient for their scholarship. It should however be noted that notes taken from lectures may be a mere skeleton of the wide array of knowledge available on a particular topic or concept.
Additionally, notes taken from texts are more organized since the student is not under any pressure as he would be in the lecture hall.
Notes taken are also expected to be a product of the student’s understanding after a successful study.
This is contrary to notes taken from lectures where the student is mainly concerned with the need to put the points made by the lecturer on record.
I, therefore, recommend that notes be taken from textbooks to complement the information gathered from classroom lectures.
The student should however endeavor to keep a detailed record of the notes collected from the textbooks. The details should include:
- The identity of the author
- The title of the book
- The publisher and year of publication
- The form of the text, e.g. a book, journal, article, project
- Precise page references, etc.
Clues to Note-taking
The student should write his notes in an outline form instead of a summary form. An outline is the presentation of the essential ideas in a graphic form.
The form brings about a clear representation of and a relationship between the major points. Outlining also makes revision easy. Consider the following example of an outline drawn from a lecture titled: ‘Ibadan Riots’.
- Reactions to economic hardships
- Protests against political uncertainties
- Loss of lives
- Wanton destruction of poverty
- The clash between civilians and law enforcement agencies
The name of the lecturer, the course title, the topic of the lecture, and the date of the notes should be indicated at the top of the page.
The student should differentiate between facts and opinions, and between main ideas and explanations. The opinions and explanations are to corroborate the facts and the main points.
They are employed to establish the facts and enhance the understanding of the student. In taking notes, therefore, only the facts and the main points should be put down by the students.
The student squeezes out time to revise his notes immediately after the lecture. Through this act, he shall identify the aspects of the lectures of the lecture that were not clear and the part of the note clearly written.
And since he had just left the lecture hall, a flashback to the class episode would be easy and his rate of comprehension could be enhanced.
The revision would also equip the student against the next class where he could request an explanation of the aspects of the previous lecture that were not clear to him.
The student’s concentration should not be sacrificed for note-taking. Effective note-taking is borne out of an understanding of the lecture delivered. The students’ jottings are meaningful if only they are informed by a thorough comprehension of the lecture.
If a lecture uses the dictation method, the student should not be put off if there is a point he could not put on record.
He should keep pace with the lecturer and negotiate for how he could fill in the gaps at a later time. In a situation where the student engages in some negative attitude to compel the lecturer to repeat himself, he could miss more points if he did not succeed in convincing the lecturer.