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Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Spoon Feeding

For many years teachers have been critical of teaching methods that spoon feed children. It seems that there is, however, a perception, among some, that the more often a teacher or a tutor has a child sitting in front of them, the more the child will learn.

Some teachers have had outstanding results with children who have followed independent study programs. The theory is that the more independent the child is, and the more responsibility the child assumes for examination preparation, the more likely the child is to do well in an examination.

What you hope is that children, who have followed a course of designed instruction, and have had the time to engage in independent study, will do better in tests.

The term spoon feeding in Eleven Plus terms could be defined as providing children with answers and information without allowing time for independent thought. But spoon feeding is also implies supplying information in an oversimplified manner.

We sometimes need to remember to walk away once a child knows what to do. All your child may need, at times, is a little space for problem solving and independent thought. In the examination you will not be sitting beside your child with a spoon in your hand. You did that when they were ten months old - not ten years old.

Unless you challenge your child you may find that you land up offering your child the heritage of a wooden spoon rather than the golden spoon your child so richly deserves.

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