What is instruction? A common definition of instruction will be that it is “ the act or procedure of leaving or geting general cognition, developing the powers of concluding and judgement, and by and large of fixing oneself or others intellectually for mature life ” ( Dictionary.com ) . In other words, instruction is the act of deriving cognition and accomplishments, and developing the ability to analyse and do proper determinations so as to be prepared to take on the challenges of life and the unsure hereafter, be it merely to do a life or to prosecute dreams and aspirations.
“ The supposed intent of instruction, as marketed by the instruction industry, is career promotion, higher wage, and authorising a college alumnus ‘s occupation hunt. [ However, this should be considered merely as ] the current personal importance of instruction ” ( BFuniv.com, 2010, parity. 2 ) and the consequence of being educated – for the selfish benefits of the single alternatively of the society – alternatively of being the intent of instruction. The intent of instruction, or of being educated, is more than that. In the yesteryear, the intent of instruction is to go through on societal, cultural and moral values, traditions and faiths, and accomplishments to the following coevals ( Kendall, D. , Murray, J. & A ; Linden, R. , 2004 ) to guarantee the endurance of the civilization and future coevals. Today, instruction is still widely viewed as a mean to leave cognition and accomplishments, and to assist people develop the ability to do the ‘correct ‘ picks and determinations. However, as stated in Confucianism, “ in order to be genuinely educated, one must foremost and first be able to larn extensively, enquire accurately, reflect carefully, distinguish clearly and last but non less, pattern seriously ” ( Yao, 2001, p. 212 ) . From this, the intent of the instruction can easy be concluded as to make morally unsloped, knowing, analytical and action-initiative citizens and leaders who are able to lend to the different facets – societal, economical and political – of a society.
The first facet of the intent of instruction is to transfuse cognition in the scholars. There are two different sorts of cognition, the scientific cognition and the history and cultural cognition. Scientific cognition consists of facts and information that are acquired through long boring procedure of proving and reexamining before it is accepted and acknowledged by the society ( BusinessDictionary.com ) . History and cultural cognition, on the other manus, are records of past events and thoughts that are gained from past experiences ( Hoerr, 2007, parity. 1 ) . One can merely be considered as knowing when 1 has the combined apprehension and consciousness of both scientific and history and cultural cognition. However, equipped with lone cognition, it is non plenty for an person, even merely as a follower, to lend much to the society.
Equipped with cognition, the following facet of the intent of instruction is to foster these knowing person to be analytical people. Education does non want the production of a coevals of people whose encephalon are so jammed with lone cognition and the exclusive ability to memorise and regurgitate facts. With the ability to analyse every piece of cognition gained from books or experiences and learn from it, one demand non hold fright when faced with jobs and challenges in life as they can be overcome through careful analysis, followed by suited applications of cognition and accomplishments. Persons who are successfully equipped with these two facets of the intent of instruction will be able to believe out of the box and contribute to the society economically or even politically.
With the rise of states like China and India who have an copiousness of inexpensive labor, Singapore can no longer vie efficaciously in the labor-intensive fabrication market. As quoted by Alvin Toffler ( 1990 ) , “ The most of import economic development of our life-time has been the rise of a new system for making wealth, based on longer on musculus but on head. ” ( p. 9 ) . To guarantee its endurance, Singapore shifted its focal point to working towards a knowledge-based society which calls for originative and critical thought accomplishments. The alteration from a labor-intensive industry to a service-driven market affects “ the demand for instruction, the utilizations put to instruction, and the demands made on instruction for orienting the work force to those demands. ” ( Riddell, 1996, p. 1363 ) . In other words, this alteration calls for more independent acquisition, creativeness and inventions. Hence, the “ Teach Less, Learn More ” 1 strategy ( TLLM ) that is started in 2006 under the “ Thinking School, Learning State ” 2 ( TSLN ) vision is implemented in the Singapore instruction system to carry through the first two facets of the intent of instruction.
“ Teach Less, Learn More ” is about learning better to prosecute the scholars and fix them for life, instead than learning more for trials and scrutinies ( MOE ) . It builds on the foundation laid in topographic point under the TSLN vision and the spirit of Innovation and Enterprise3 ( I & A ; E ) . The relationship between TSLN, I & A ; E and TLLM can be seen in the Figure 1 ( taken from MOE web site ) below.
Figure: Chart demoing the relationship between TSLN, I & A ; E and TLLM
Figure 1: Chart demoing the relationship between TSLN, I & A ; E and TLLM
TLLM aims to assist scholars broadened their range of cognition, other than the 1s needed to hit good in trials and scrutinies, and besides promote scholars to be analytical as it is no longer about memorising and regurgitating facts and informations.
While I & A ; E besides encourages scholars to be analytic, its chief purpose is to advance the willingness to seek new and unseasoned paths without fright of failure and produces leaders who are prepared “ to be flexible, to multitask, to take duty and to animate squads and organisations to take springs of invention ” ( MOE ) . As quoted by Riddell, he believes that the most of import accomplishment that instruction can instill in the scholar is flexibleness ( 1996 ) . This leads to the 3rd facets of the intent of instruction which is to cultivate leading, inaugural and flexibleness in the person. This is to guarantee that there will ever be a group of leaders that is willing to take the first measure out and take the remainder of the society towards success in the unsure hereafter by being flexible and unfastened to new unseasoned thoughts when going the route to triumph.
These three facets of the intent of instruction will of class have several deductions on the instructors and pupils in Singapore. Teachers have to be advanced in learning so as to do certain that larning was meaningful and gratifying to the pupils ( Ho, 2009 ) and efficaciously promote autonomous acquisition in all pupils. This means that there should be less dependance on drill, pattern and rote acquisition ( MOE ) . Therefore, the function of a instructor should be that of a wise man, facilitator and theoretical account alternatively of being person who merely do “ teacher talk ” and talking ( MOE ) . Teachers are besides required to be prepared in course of study development, research and pedagogical accomplishments by go toing workshops on course of study development and assorted teaching methods, and with the constitution of the Research Activist Scheme, instructors can larn more on research methodological analysiss ( Ho, 2009 ) . All these readying and acquisition is to guarantee that instructors are able to acknowledge and provide better to pupils ‘ unique and differing acquisition demands.
For the pupils, they will no longer to be spoon-fed by the instructors. This calls for autonomous and self-motivated acquisition which is in melody with the Desired Outcomes of Education. Students now have to take up the mantle of being “ a autonomous scholar who takes duty for his ain acquisition, who inquiries, reflects and perseveres in the chase of larning ” ( MOE ) and “ an active subscriber who is able to work efficaciously in squads, exercisings initiative, takes deliberate hazards, is advanced and strives for excellence ” ( MOE ) . Furthermore, as course of studies will be trimmed, pupils will hold more clip and energy to concentrate on nucleus cognition and accomplishments ( MOE ) or even to widen their range of cognition. Students will besides be required to cognize how to use their cognition to work out or get the better of the jobs and challenges presented to them. Merely memorising and regurgitating cognition will non be plenty to hit good. An illustration of this Problem-Based Learning will be the Project Work4 introduced into the Junior College course of study to promote cognition analysis and applications.
The above three facets of instruction may successfully model a coevals of globally competitory citizens much sought after by the planetary market but it does non automatically guarantee that these capable people would non utilize their intelligence to make problem for the society or even merely abandon their fatherland to pursuit a high-flying calling. As Teo said, “ Of what usage is the instruction system if it produces smart criminals or selfish individualists who feel no duty to society, or trueness to state? Education must permeate the following coevals with the right value system. Through values instruction, we must develop future citizens with unsloped character who can lend to their community. We must besides instill in our immature a deep sense of adhering to the state, so that they will be prepared to remain and contend in times of hardship. ” ( 1998 ) .
This leads us to the last and most of import facet of the intent of instruction which is to make morally unsloped persons that is devoted to functioning and lending to their state. As values are a set of societal norms that guides the actions of an person and the society, values education is therefore used as a mean to transfuse a sense of morality in the scholars. “ Values aˆ¦ are either innate or acquired. Innate values are [ the ] congenital Godhead virtuousnesss such as love, peace, felicity, clemency and compassion every bit good as the positive moral qualities such as regard, humbleness, tolerance, duty, cooperation, honestness and simpleness. Acquired values are those external values adopted at [ one ‘s ] ‘place of birth ‘ or ‘place of growing ‘ and are influenced by the aˆ¦ environment. ” ( Reddy ) . Hence, values instruction consists of character instruction, which builds on the innate values, and the national instruction, which can be considered as a portion of the acquired values as it is influenced by the authorities of the state.
Character instruction ensures that the person will stay by the jurisprudence and protect the peace and harmoniousness of the society through “ societal and emotional acquisition, moral reasoning/cognitive development, life accomplishments instruction, wellness instruction ; force bar, critical thought, ethical logical thinking, and struggle declaration and mediation ” ( Lickona, 1998 ) . The wellbeing of the society and the wellness and benefits of the other persons will be made certain.
National instruction seeks to instill national trueness and a sense of belongingness in the scholars. This is critical in the economic and societal development of a society as the endurance of a state depends to a great extent on the parts of its citizens – be it working to maintain one ‘s state in front of others in the planetary market or being the following pedagogue to the future coevalss.
In Singapore context, values education takes the signifier of the course of study capable Civics and Moral Education5 ( CME ) , National Education6 ( NE ) enterprises ( 2008 ) and Social Studies7. Particularly at the border of the twenty-first century and with the spread of globalisation, pupils are more likely to exhibits traits like philistinism and unhealthy consumerism which may hold “ terrible economic reverberations in the hereafter ” for a resource-limited little state like Singapore ( 2008 ) . The occupation of the instructor in this instance would be to transfuse a sense of economy in these pupils and at the same clip. During these lessons, alternatively of simply prophesying approximately good administration, instructors should let the pupils to place the pros and cons of certain policies like the execution of the Central Provident Fund7 ( CPF ) or the Electronic Road Pricing8 ( ERP ) and acquire them to see the demand for these policies in the position of the authorities so as to “ [ surrogate ] societal coherence and rootedness to ” Singapore. Furthermore, alternatively of simply droning on and on about the moral issues and values that arises in Singapore ‘s society, instructors can try to involvement the pupils by acquiring them to believe critically about these issues and pull up possible solutions. To successfully prosecute pupils in values instruction, instructors themselves should play an active function in leaving the values to the pupils and non utilize the NE or “ CME schoolroom period [ s ] aˆ¦ for alteration of other academic topics ” ( 2008 ) .
Students should non analyze Social Studies for the interest of hiting good in the “ compulsory and examinable topic ” . Valuess should be learn and taken off to be applied in the ulterior portion of their life when they step into the society of virtuousnesss and frailties.
In decision, in order for a state or society to boom, it is important that the educational policies implemented by the state leaders must be in line with the intent of instruction. This is particularly important when a state wants to fix and fit its citizens with the necessary tools to battle the challenges of globalisation. Education in the twenty-first century will be “ flexible, originative, ambitious, and complex ” as it addresses the many issues that will originate from the rapid development of the universe ( twenty-first Century Schools, 2008, parity. 3 ) but there should besides be a greater accent of values education so as to antagonize any unwanted traits that are bound to demo up in the whirlwind of apparently impossible alterations. The hereafter of Singapore remainders in the custodies of its hereafter citizens ; hence the instruction of today ‘s young person must non be taken lightly.