Parents and carers usually remember their own school days when their children start attending school. Some parents and carers are able to help their children with their homework. Others feel that they have done their duty if they can offer a good desk and a quiet environment for their child to study in.
On the one hand, if helping your child with homework brings back these memories, it is natural to feel some hesitation. On the other hand, our intuition tells us that, just like anything else in life, this shall also pass: the child will grow up and move on from school. In other words, we resolve to tolerate school for a few more years!
But, let’s be honest: how many of us like recalling the mathematics that we learned in school or the grammar drills that we may have been subjected to? Not many, in our opinion. And, we forget that, as teachers or parents/carers, our learning did not stop when we became adults. Indeed, we are still learning every day!
For example, nowadays everybody is using computer technology without even knowing it: we are all engrossed with our phones, aren’t we? We are typing our lives away, sending and receiving photos and being submerged with images and sounds and information coming from every corner of the universe.
Are we aware that the ability to manipulate the software on our phones is a skill? That, what makes these programmes and apps work is software and coding? Of course, not! If we were, we would probably have felt overwhelmed and stopped using these things altogether.
But, we don’t stop using technology and, like it or not, we keep learning how to use new apps and new gadgets every day. Science, mathematics and humanities, like technology, are not static subjects: they keep developing and changing, too. For example, take the mathematics parents and carers learned in school: it is not the same anymore; it, too, has changed and is being taught in a different way.
Science is changing, psychology is changing and, most important of all, pedagogy – the ‘science’ of teaching learners – is changing. The teachers at your children’s schools today are using different methods than the ones used by the teachers at the schools you attended.
Whether we accept it or not, we are all learners, and, as parents, carers and teachers, from to time we need to take a new look at the subjects we were taught and we learned at school and update ourselves. These pages describe experiences in after school activities that offer new perspectives and approaches in teaching and learning. We hope that our efforts are worthwhile if we can help a little everyone looking for inspiration.
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