MOET teaches life skills at schools
Jan. 20th, 2010
Phung Khac Binh, Director of the Students’ Affairs Department under the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET), recently spoke about the ministry’s decision to teach life skills at general schools. Binh emphasized that, in the modern times, teaching both manners and scientific knowledge are very important.
Binh, in a recent interview with Tuoi Tre newspaper, said that the teaching manners to help students grow into useful members of the society and teaching scientific knowledge must be carried out simultaneously, and that life skills should be taught as part of their regular subjects.
“Students learn mathematics not just to solve mathematics problems, but in order to practice thinking logically and apply knowledge in reality. They learn literature not just to write good essays, but also because they need to learn how to feel beauty and strive for healthy things in their life,” he proposed.
Tuoi Tre: Many students and teachers complain that they are now under hard pressure from the heavy curriculum. They only have time to teach and receive scientific knowledge and do not have time for other things.
Phung Khac Binh: MOET has asked schools and teachers to integrate the teaching of manners and behavior flexibly into their curriculum, arousing the mentality capabilities and creativeness of their students. However, not every teacher can do that well.
I think that teaching life skills within regular subjects will not make the loads heavier, while it would help lessons and subjects become more attractive to students. The most important thing is that teachers need good teaching methods.
Tuoi Tre: Do you mean that the decline in morality, lifestyle and the lack of life skills of many students nowadays is because teachers do not have suitable methods to convey requirements set by MOET?
Binh: Not really. The teaching of manners and helping students form their personalities and life skills needs to be done via different channels. It would not be realistic to rely totally on the school system. I think that we should start a national program on morality education for the increasing number of students who quit school and “lead a life like dust.”
Tuoi Tre: What does MOET think should be done to improve the teaching of manners and scientific knowledge?
Binh: From 2010-2011, MOET will make life skills a part of curricular subjects at general schools, from primary to high school. MOET has assigned the Scientific Education Institute to design the syllabus.
Such teaching has been carried out on a trial basis in some places already. We have trained teachers, organized forums for discussions and exchanges views in seven cities and provinces.