Teachers are one of our first role models. Our country needs great teachers to build up an incredible future generation. Read up on how Lyceum College could help us achieve this.
Much research has been done on the state of our education system in South Africa. It isn’t just the curriculum that is failing us, as some would like to think. The quality of the teachers graduating from tertiary institutions and teaching our countries children – is one of the main causes of concern for our education system. Bongani Nkosi writes in his article for Mail & Guardian:
“They (teachers) tend to lack proficiency in English and have poor reading and writing skills.”
While not all teachers fall under this category, there are thousands of great South African teachers out there, the teachers in the poverty-stricken areas generally are not as up to standard as they should be. While there are many of us who have never experienced the deteriorating education system in our schooling, hundreds and thousands of kids experience this on a daily basis. In this article, we can see that the education department is unsure if the mathematics being taught at many of our schools is by qualified teachers. That’s kinda scary.
In many situations, children go to school as an opportunity to escape poverty and less stimulating situations. Yet, what they experience are some teachers who aren’t adequately trained to educate students towards a better future. Never mind their hungry tummies and lack of stationary or clothes.
How it Should Be
When I was in primary school I idolized my teachers. In the lower grades I would pick flowers out of our garden and give it to my teacher. I’d be so proud of myself and feel like her absolute favourite as she hugged and thanked me. I would then eagerly listen to everything she said because she was my hero and everything she said must be the 100% truth. In my brief period working as a teacher’s assistant in a Grade 1 class, I saw the exact same adoration I had for my teachers back then as they had for their Grade 1 teacher and myself.
Once I became WAY too cool and got older, the flowers and hugs stopped. Teachers became more firm and less affectionate but they were still idolized. Why? Because they treated us more like adults, joked around with us and made us laugh. Nonetheless, through it all, they were still firm when needed and taught us everything we needed at that point, because they were well educated themselves.
My Grade 7 teacher will always be my favourite. We feared his loud, booming voice and stature throughout primary school. Until you became one of his students. Then you started to love and idolize him. He was funny, made jokes with us and allowed us quite a bit of freedom but he was still firm, punished students when he needed to and when it was work time, no one dared to do anything other than work. That balance of love and firmness is what children and adolescents need.
My teachers helped me bloom, they gave me space to develop into my own person even though the curriculum is set in stone. My high school English teacher encouraged my love for literature and reading. We discussed authors, genres and poetry in detail. She gave me books to read and praised my essays. Praise that was heaven to my young, insecure teenage ears.
That is what we need from our teachers – affirmation, positive affirmation, support, relationship, quality teaching, the ability to walk away knowing we got everything we need for the basis of our education and future.
This teacher below is a great example of how a teacher should be, a teacher who sees teaching as more than a job but rather an investment into her students lives.
The Truth Will Not Always Set You Free
A lot of investigative research has gone into our current education system and the quality of the teachers employed. The truth is absolutely shocking (Where can we find this truth – in the link above). The truth is not setting us free. It has made us realise the state of our country and what it’s doing to our future generations, yet we can’t do much about it because other matters seem more pressing.
South Africa has been ranked last on a list of 140 schools based on the quality of education offered. This is a very scary statistic. We need quality teachers in EVERY school, not just in the higher and middle income areas.
Thankfully some institutions and organisations have started making their own changes. Changes which will affect the country as a whole.
Where Can You Study to Become a Teacher?
There are many institutions in South Africa you can study at to pursue a teaching qualification. One institution we’d like to focus on though is Lyceum College. This institution has developed accredited education courses that are designed to better qualify their graduates. They ensure that their students graduate with adequate skills and literacy levels so that they can enter the education system prepared to provide the best possible schooling for the scholars of our country.
These courses are done via distance learning. This doesn’t make it a less-approved course than classroom-based learning. With the curriculum they have created, you can’t graduate unless you meet their standards. Their desire to develop skilled teachers far outweighs their desire to produce large quantities of graduates and impressive statistics.
Do you want to become a teacher? Why not do a bit of research to see if it would suit you?
Lyceum offers the following education courses:
This qualification goes in depth into the skills and knowledge you need specifically for the Grade R classroom.
How long does it take to complete?
3 years’ part time
- Home Language 30%
- Mathematics 40% OR Mathematical Literacy 60%
- Level 4 for four subjects from the designated 20-credit subject list.
- Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) will be acknowledged.
In this qualification you will be taught the specialised skills needed to build up a pre-school child so that they are prepared and confident when entering the schooling system.
How long does it take to complete?
- Be competent in English
- Have general, theoretical, academic and practical professional knowledge and understanding accomplished at least NQF level 5.
Both of these courses have been specially designed to equip aspiring teachers for specific age groups. These are both for children below 7 years old. Some may see these ages as insignificant but this is where the fundamentals are laid out, scholars perceptions of school and their attitudes towards it are challenged. Children really idolize teachers at this age and it shouldn’t be overlooked.
Teachers have a huge influence on their students. A good teacher that has a positive attitude towards her class generally leaves students happier, more eager to learn and with better results. Lyceum encourages people to join the movement of bettering the education system and quality of educators by studying one of their comprehensive courses.
Many of us remember our teachers with fondness. It’s time to take that and put it back into our education system. If you’re considering teaching and love younger children, then take the plunge and explore the options Lyceum offers you.