One of the big questions which needs to be answered in the education of a child is what should a child learn at school.
Twelve years are spent in a childs life in mainstream education through primary, junior and senior high school.
The inception of the school journey for a child is at pre-school when they attend either playgroup or kindergarten and the child is prepared for full time schooling.
Pre-school teaches children the basics of reading, writing, listening and speaking.
There are four core areas which are key in the childs education.
They are language, mathematics, science and socialisation.
Let’s take language first.
Language is, of course, the ability to communicate with others.
A child will develop in his lifetime the ability to speak in more than one language and to interchange them.
A child may juggle with speaking four different languages from an ethnic mother tongue to a national language, to an International language like English and a religious language like arabic.
Listening to the spoken word and reading written text material are important to achieving a comprehension of a language enhanced by constant practice.
Learning Mathematics goes beyond basic arithmetic and extends to the full range of fractions, algebra, decimalisation, percentages, formulas and much more.
Science is a very broad subjective topic which provides a student essential knowledge about the natural world and how things work including computer technology, physics, chemistry and biology.
Science meets the challenge of a curious, questioning mind.
What I call socialisation, you might call Civics, Humanities, Sociology or Life Skills.
Humans need social skills and the ability to interact with others.
Socialisation, therefore, provides the means for having friends, having hobbies and recreation in our life, realizing our talents and finding the inspiration to choose a career.
Socialisation is about learning things collectively and how to be a team player.
Religion, history, cookery, sport, arts and crafts, cookery and drama are just some of the topics which make up socialisation.
The school journey of a child will be regularly assessed, appraised, evaluated, tested and examined.
It does not end with the final graduation from High School.
The next stage of the school journey begins with several years of college, university, apprenticeship, vocation and internship.
The ultimate aim is for every child to become a valued and contributing member to society based on life skills learnt and developed during the school journey.
Even then, with all those skills learnt, that is still not the end of the school journey.
Later in life, the student becomes the messenger for all that has been learnt.
So what should a child learn at school?
Life skills to live a life according to custom, culture and tradition.
An ability to contribute to the world in which he or she lives.
A confidence to communicate with language.
To have speed of action and thought by calculation.
The school journey for a student is one without end.