28 Dec PISA Results: Why We Are Failing Our Kids Education?
Why We Are Failing Our Kids?
I am eating my own words when I said the last episode, I won’t be back until mid beginning of February. But I felt compelled to record this episode. I explained you why. So the PISA ranking has come out and everybody’s going bananas in Australia. Oh my god. Oh my god. We failed. We are going down with our education. I just feel compelled to talk about the results. Because what people are not looking is the bigger picture.
When you look at these any results, you have to take them with a pinch of salt. They are a snapshot of where the education system in the OECD countries are. If you look at the PISA results for this year, it’s not that Australia has slipped backwards. It’s all the other countries, all the developing countries, they’re all going backwards a little bit as well.
This is Happening in Kids Education in Finland as Well
Finland, where I’m from, they’ve gone backwards as well. Are they still the best educators in the world? Well, in my eyes, there will always be that, but they’ve gone backwards. One of the interesting things is that they are still the best ranking country when you look at the results of preparing kids for adulthood, preparing kids to the life. Click To Tweet.
However when you look at individual like reading and maths and stem, that’s where they are going backwards, but it’s an overall education system is working.
My sister who’s a teacher, she said that the austerity measures that the government has been putting on for years used to be, like the administrative side of things. But now they are really, really eating into the actual teaching.
So the work that the teachers are doing is being, eaten away by the austerity measures, there are not enough teachers or the time is limited, the resources are limited.
Why Results Have Gone Backwards?
Well, one of the things that I see is that there is money in education, but it’s just the way it’s being used and where it’s being directed, is where the problem is, public schools or private schools, they get money from the government.
But the way it’s distributed is wrong based on NAPLAN results. Which should be scrapped and put the money on where the teachers are actually teaching, getting them to do the curriculum flexibly so that it makes sense for the kids. Not to say here is the curriculum in a box, you need to deliver this. It doesn’t work. You see from the results, it doesn’t work.
Now the other thing, which is one of my biggest things is the digital media and digital pads iPads, iPhones, digital devices, televisions, whatever you call them.
Kids having access to them and using them going to sleep late in the evening 11 o’clock, coming school late or being tired at school and not been able to concentrate because they been playing Minecraft or Fortnight to nighttime and this happens full knowledge of the parents.
What Parents Can Do Differently on Kids Education?
So we parents need to look into ourselves and say what can we do to help our kids and help them to learn better? Because the resources are there, but what are the kids then doing?
We are parenting through the iPads we are putting kids in front of the telly, the iPad for hours on end, keep them quiet. We see people going to dinners with the iPads for their kids which is sad.
I’m not saying I’m a perfect example of this. So what happened in our family we stopped using TV and we have only one old iPad which they’re using for Skyping with the grandparents overseas, but we put stop on all of that the except Skyping and that was about five or six weeks ago now. First two weeks kids were going bananas and were absolutely crazy.
They had tantrums and being aggressive and everything. Then week three, they started playing, they started playing again with their toys that they’ve been redundant for like months on end.
They started playing with the books that they’ve been given to read them drawing, arts and crafts and wanted to do help me with the cooking and measuring flowers to the muffing mixture. My kids became a pleasusre to be around.
The Change on Kids Behaviour
Then they did stop, stop asking,”Can I have the iPad? Can I have the TV “. They stopped asking that.
My boys are five and seven and they get along real well. Now they get on even better. I was just flabbergasted.
I have say, and I felt less stressful and less on the edge because my kids were less on the edge. So why I’m telling you all this and why I’m talking about these digital devices and their affect on kids? It’s because it does.
If you look at the PISA results for all the westernized countries, it’s those countries which have access digital devices where we know for sure when you look at all the conversations, you look all the research that’s been done here in Australia and Finland, that kids are spending more and more time on those devices, and less time playing.
Less time sleeping so of course it’s going to affect on them.
We Are Bad Example To Our Kids
I think as parents we give bad example, we use our iPhones all the time. Let’s face it, we are on them and we are addicted to them as well.
But if you look at Steven Jobs, the founder of Apple, he did not give his kids, iPads, iPhones until they were 14. So he knew all this, he was the creator of these. He knew how addictive they are. So why would I give them to my children?
We can shut our kids away from devices, but we need to be smart about it and all in moderation. They are not babysitters, and that’s what they have become.
They have become the easy distraction to give the kids so that we can get on with our lives. You get on with your life, but your children are not getting on with their lives because they fail to play.
They fail the exams as they are tired and they don’t get things done at school because of this. I think politicians as well decision-makers need to look how we can make this better for our kids?
Because we have the resources. Yes, someone’s going to come back saying that we don’t, or that we are just not there with the resources, but we are. We just have to make them work.
The Succecss of the Nordic Model on Kids Education
One of the other things was the fact that the countries that have done well is for example, Estonia and and Singapore and China. Estonia is interesting because I read an article few days ago where Estonia were with BBC.
They had to after the fall of USSR to look for their neighbors. So they went to Finland. They brought all the good things on the Finnish education system to their country to see, how they can make this work.
On that BBC article, there was this interesting thing about Estonian education how the children go to school at seven. Which is the start age in Finland, but also how they have changed the preschool, how the preschool has changed, and that preschool is very much like the Nordic model?
You start at age three, but it’s learning through play. It’s like the Nordic model.
What You Can Do For Your Kids?
Estonia have kind of perfected this over the past decade or two, and they give the schools the flexibility to implement the curriculum. Click To Tweet.
There would be so many things that the Australian education system could implement here as well. So if you’re a parent who listens to this in any country, go and check with your teacher or your Headmistress, what are they doing to get your kids learn the healthy way.
What can you do at home is putting those devices away and giving them a limit of when they are to be used.
Make sure your kids get more time to play and running outside and just being kids.
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