More and more parents in Singapore are attending boot camps, to help children with their studies!
A new trend is emerging in Singapore, that of parents getting tuition for themselves, so that they can help their kids with their studies! And why not, the Singapore primary school syllabus IS rather tough; my husband and I usually end up wracking our brains over our daughter's Math problems.
According to The Straits Times, the number of parents attending such crash courses and intensive workshops in Singapore, is on the rise.
Extra coaching it seems, helps these parents get more involved in their kids' studies. It helps them understand core concepts, and mistakes their kids are likely to make, and also get valuable tips for exams. At least a dozen education centres in Singapore are offering such courses and workshops.
Tuition centres offering parental workshops
Genius Young Minds, which specialises in primary school maths tuition, started offering tuition for parents of Primary 6 pupils from 2013. The response was so good that it now conducts such classes to parents of Primary 1 to 6 pupils. These classes are done every month, for 3.5 hours per session. The centre has seen an increase in the number of parents from just 25 in 2013, to 500 last year! There has been an increase in fees as well; this year, classes will cost between $257 and $397 per month, depending on the primary school level.
Another education centre to jump in on the parental tuition bandwagon is Concept Math, which last year, collaborated with another education centre, to offer a one time 3 hour workshop for parents, to acquaint them with key concepts of the English and Maths syllabus. All 60 slots for the workshop last May were taken up within a day! These classes cost between $30 to $50, depending on the level of study. For Primary 5 and Primary 6, parents are even allowed to sit in at regular classes and learn together with their kids!
Marshall Cavendish Education (MCE) has also been offering parent workshops focussing on Maths, English and Science, since 2015.
Most parents opt for self tuition because they feel that it empowers them to guide and coach their kids better; as kids no longer have to wait for school teachers or tutors to clear their doubts. But we also wonder if parental tuition is taking kiasuism to the next level.
How can parents help kids with their studies
- Get more involved: Ask your children what they did at school today. Show interest in their projects and school activities. Enquire if they need any extra help with their school work.
- Create a conducive study environment: Clear the clutter. Organise study material and stationery. The child should be happy to be in his study room. Maybe even put up some educational/motivational posters on the wall. Make a study time-table or routine.
- Limit distractions: If your child is doing homework, turn the television off and limit any conversations happening in the same room.
- Help them with homework? : Yes, and no. While little kids would definitely need help with calling out spelling words, the aim must be to encourage the child to be an independent learner. If your child does request for help, offer him support calmly and cheerfully. Grumbling and creating a fuss while helping is worse than no help at all.
- Understand your child's learning style: Is he a visual learner? Does he learn better by hearing out the information? Does playing games increase his concentration?
- Help your child unwind and relax: Make sure the kids eat healthy, and get enough sleep every night. Lifestyle has an important role to play in ensuring that children are bright and alert, and ready to tackle whatever challenges schoolwork throws at them.
- Take the kids on educational trips: Ultimately, learning is not only about school. Today's kids need to be future ready. Broaden their horizons; take them to museums, nature trips, science fairs etc, which are not related to school at all. Watch educational documentaries with them, and encourage them to read more.
- Praise and reward your child: Some children need to be sufficiently motivated to complete tasks. Discuss and set short term goals with your child. Maybe even create a reward sheet. Small children love getting their stickers. Praise them for their good effort, taking care not to shame them if they haven't met their milestones.
(Source: The Straits Times)
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