Experts Harp on Teachers’ Access to Resources for Better Impact

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Funmi Ogundare

Experts have stressed the need for teachers to have more access to resources that would enable them improve their knowledge and make an impact on future leaders.

Speaking at the Edu-Aid conference organised by the Covenant Christian Centre (CCC) for public and private school teachers in Lagos recently, the Lead Consultant, Tchinasah Limited, Mrs. Maureen Awulonah highlighted some of the challenges facing teachers apart from knowledge gap.

“One is the fact that parents do not allow them to do their jobs, they have a mind-set of what they want for their children but when you bring such children to school, the teachers diagnose the best way to teach them.

“Sometimes parents do not agree so you see them moving their children from one school to the other. The other problem is that private schools are better than government schools and it is a little more difficult for those working in private schools because of the long hours they put in.”

Awulonah who spoke on ‘Active Learning in the 21st Century Classroom’, noted that the teaching profession is rapidly changing as a result of technology, adding that it is no longer the traditional ‘arm chair teaching.

“The teachers’ role in this century is more of a facilitator and having the ability to effectively use space, content, means and method in enhancing active learning in the classroom. Our role as teachers is to help every child discover their purpose and help them walk in it.”

She appealed to teachers to equip themselves by checking for resources online, attending trainings that would enhance their knowledge, saying, “children these days are more exposed and enlightened, the internet is open for information and with active learning, we can engage children through writing, reflecting, critical thinking and we can bring all of that to the class if we equip the teachers to understand that they are the agent for active learning.”

A senior lecturer at the Department of English Language, University of Lagos, Dr. Yewande Ntekim-Rex in her paper, ‘2030 Sustainable Development Goal and How it Concerns Us’, said the ultimate goal of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) is to transform the world, adding that education plays a pivotal role in achieving the goals by 2030.

“In achieving the SDG, the present curriculum in Nigeria must be reworked to address the present economic and social realities within our context,” she said, while highlighting the strategies teachers could employ in addressing the SDGs with the pupils

“By 2030 the global population of these pupils will be in the prime of their lives. Teachers should begin to shape their attitudes and unlock creativity among them.”

In his paper, ‘The Psychology of Learning and Behaviour’, a psychologist and Executive Director of Xpos Technologies Group, Mr. Adeoye Abodunrin said narratives on education has to change in order to address the crisis of human capital and shape a new culture for better tomorrow, adding that education should function to serve societal needs.

“Education should not bother pupils with what they do not need for their future. The aim of learning should be for behavioural change not necessarily for passing grades. When teachers give test to their pupils, it is for diagnostic reason so as to know the nature of pupil’s problems and address it.

He suggested that teachers should employ the strategy of observing students during interactive sessions, assess their capability and capacity.

A social empowerment advocate and Child Rights and Protection Practitioner, Taiwo Akinlami in his paper, ‘Child Rights and Protection Issues in Nigeria’, highlighted the various types of child abuse, including; physical, serial and emotional abuse, noting that parents and teachers need to use knowledge, skills and attitude in raising a child.

“The rights of the child are right to life, survival, participation and right to protection. The child’s rights should be protected and if you are going to do that, there should be a system in place, you don’t wait until children are abused before you do something, you have to make adequate preparations.”