9 Good Secondary Schools on the Mainland (Lagos State)

 

In Nigeria, secondary education is the second level of educational training after primary school and it gives the student a wider scope and perspective about education and what career choice to make in the future. A half-century of amazing advancement in giving primary education to children could be lost if we fail to provide opportunities for further schooling.

CHRISLAND HIGH SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Chrisland High School

Chrisland is located at 72 Idimu Rd, Lagos and 26, Opebi Road, Ikeja respectively. It is a school with a great vision which is to be at the forefront in the private education sector and to nurture the children to become all they can be through quality all-round education, from kindergarten to tertiary level. Chrisland believes in the basic dignity of the human self; therefore they do not discriminate against any ideology or religion. However, the only demand is that individuals recognise that there are beliefs and creeds other than their own and respect them. Mutual respect breeds co-operation and advancement.

The school facilities include among others a spacious library with up-to-date books, a conducive atmosphere for effective learning, Spacious classrooms, well lit and well ventilated, well furnished computer room and internet facilities, Healthcare services, a modern art studio, Practical science, Home Economics Room, mini Olympic size swimming pool, large sports ground with spectators pavilion, a well equipped music lab & studio, multi-purpose hall, tuck shop, safe water and constant electricity supply with experienced and dedicated graduate teachers with teaching qualifications and professional guidance and counselling services. Learn more about Chrisland High School. 

 

GRENVILLE SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Grenville Schools

Located in Ikeja, Grenville School is known for its core values which are; trust in God, aspiration, respect, responsibility, kindness, honesty, discipline. The school provides an enabling environment which is clean, safe and secure for children irrespective of their peculiarities. Grenville mission statement is to ensure that all students have the opportunity to reach their personal best academically, socially and spiritually in order to become leaders of the future. The vision of Grenville is to be a world-class learning institution which exceeds expectations by combining a strong and highly professional team of staff with state of the art technology and facilities.

The school mission is to ensure that all students, regardless of ability have the opportunity to reach their personal best and are well grounded.

The Grenville tradition sums up a curriculum that gives an all-round education where students from diverse nationalities are catered for. Grenville secures an international outlook, in the sense that its students’ mix comprises a host of foreign nationalities, in its strategy of managing diversity both in student enrolment and academic faculty.

Grenville school runs a Cambridge advance (A) qualification and International Degree Foundation Programme (IDFP) which is a qualification that is equivalent to the A-level qualification and which many universities, especially those in the UK see as adequately suitable for entry unto the first year of a degree programme. To learn more about facilities, fees, activities and so on kindly visit their profile here

RAINBOW COLLEGE 

Photo Credit: Rainbow College

Located at Surulere, Rainbow College runs a day and boarding school that continues to raise genuine, well-educated, responsible, God-fearing and strong-minded students who go on to achieve amazing things. The school’s proven record of excellence for education in Nigeria is what has driven so many families to join the esteemed educational institution.

At Rainbow College, the reputable educational approach is applied to more than just academic excellence. The school offers a balanced curriculum of Sports, Moral guidance and Leadership training. Learn more about Rainbow College.

JEXTOBAN SECONDARY SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Jextoban Secondary School

Jextoban Secondary School, Alapere Ketu operates as a co-educational institution and runs a boarding house system which enhances its pastoral ideals in moral training. The school instil into the students, a high standard of courtesy and consideration for others. The school equally foster through the disciplinary process, the virtue of self-discipline, tolerance, love, fairness impartiality and leadership development

Jextoban Secondary School boasts of well-equipped educational facilities. The classrooms are fully fitted with air conditioners, a functional first aid centre, and well-equipped science laboratories, an evergreen sports field and well-trained security team.
The school invest in teacher development as well as quality assurance management in order to maintain it well known academic standard.  Students are prepared for SSCE (WAEC & NECO) as well as Cambridge IGSE.  Learn more about Jextoban Secondary School.

 CHRIST THE REDEEMERS SECONDARY SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Christ the Redeemer Secondary School

Located in Gbagada, Christ the redeemer Secondary School is owned by the Redeemed Christian Church of God that runs a boarding house system that strives to replicate home – away from home. Its mission statement is to provide first-class secondary education for the development of knowledge, skill and attitude necessary for children to grow in life with faith, virtue and excellence through hard work and its vision is to touch lives of children in Godly way and with high intellectual and moral characteristics needed for peace, entrepreneurship and leadership in globalized world.
Christ the Redeemers Secondary School provides the necessary breadth of experience and challenging opportunity that will prepare each child for the life in the 21st century. The school has committed teaching staff who are both academically and professionally qualified with non- teaching staffs that are equally committed and hard working. Learn more about Christ the Redeemer Secondary School.

PLATFORM SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Platform College

Located at Alimosho, Platform school is a private secondary school that run both day and boarding school. The school  Platform school is unique in its approach to education, which is aimed at discovering and developing the potentials of every child. Pupils and the Students are exposed to practical classroom teaching, sports, vocational skills and fundamental societal values. Apart from a conducive learning environment, the school has competent teachers and the necessary accompaniments such as laboratories, library, and spacious classrooms.

Platform School is dedicated to ensuring that the children grow up to be independent and self-actualized. With the aim at developing students academically, morally, physically, intellectually and socially, the institution believes in the uniqueness of every child. Learn more about Platform College.

SUPREME EDUCATION FOUNDATION SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Supreme Education Foundation School

Supreme Education Foundation School is a centre of excellence located at Magodo G.R.A that is designed to provide world-class education in an exciting learning environment for students. The school operates both day and boarding and it provides comfortable hostel accommodation under the supervision of experienced hostel parents. The students are taught to be independent as well as co-exist with one another.

With the vision to attain the highest standard of excellence in academics and total development of the students, the school mission is summed up to unrelenting efforts at working hand-in-hand with the parents to provide an inclusive world-class education that develops students’ skills, knowledge and character; equipping the students to become confident leaders, role models and global citizens. Learn more about Supreme Education Foundation School. 

VICSUM PRIVATE SCHOOL

Photo Credit: Vicsum Private School

Vicsum Private school is located at Omole phase II with the motto that says “raising tomorrow’s leaders”. It is a place where learning starts from the first step The school is staffed with highly qualified, experienced, seasoned and highly motivated teachers who handle various subjects in the school. They are supported by efficient and hardworking non-teaching staffs that see to the day to day well-being of the institution.

Viscum is known for it small class size giving room for individual attention, affordable fees, excellent result in WAEC and NECO results, home away from home boarding facilities, safe and secure serene environment, an I.T driven environment, bus service etc. To learn more about facilities, fees, activities and so on kindly visit their profile here.

RIVERSIDE COLLEGE

Photo Credit: Riverside College

Riverside College, Isheri is a purpose-built school with an overall aim to provide the students with the right conditions in order to encourage their individual talents to blossom to the fullest. The school robust curriculum (Nigeria/British) has given the students an edge over their peers as they are better informed and aware of happenings around them and the use of exceptional teaching aids and methods enhance the student’s potential and ensures no student is left behind.

The school classrooms have gone digital with interactive boards and projectors to enhance teaching and learning and develop pupils/students understanding and application of skills. The students are trained to have a global perspective on all issues and materials taught. Riverside college placed emphasis on acquisition of core skills (digital literacy, problem-solving, critical thinking, leadership collaboration, creativity and imagination) which are lifelong learning skills that motivate and enable all students to make positive contributions to society. Learn more about Riverside college.

50 Parents Explained Why They Changed the Schools their Wards were Enrolled and WELFARE topped the list

Parents on FabMumNG were asked why they changed the schools their wards were enrolled and they had a lot to say. After more than  100 comments were broken down into categories, we found out that the welfare of the wards is the strongest reason parents change schools followed by teacher competency, school management structure and many others. See parents comments below.

 

 WEAK MANAGEMENT
newlookconcept Poor management, 3 different teachers can teach a class for a session. So bad so many parents left.
ogoz_etc@newlookconcept same reason I’m about to change my child’s school. I can’t have 3 teachers in a session teach a 3 years old. I doubt it’s the best for the child.
jaybae Changing my child because of frequent change of staffs and some bad reasons I can’t mention here and also frequent increment
kemigbengaReligious purposes, my first son was already getting deep into another religion cos the owner of the school was Of that particular religion
wineup95The school was trying to teach them about being lesbian gay bi-sexual transgender and my son was only 6!!! Please tell me why does a 6 yr old need to know about that at that age??? Or maybe im just wrong !?!?!?!?!?! 
lollies_lieuI changed my daughters creche because I discovered that they don’t pray and lacked spiritual (Christian) content. Also because at the end of the term they gave a one year old typed examination, answered, marked and score with a result sheet! Who does that!!!!!? Plus her snacks was always missing, so I went early to pick her and saw where the care giver emptied all the kids snacks on the table
I changed my daughter’s school because of the way the proprietress handles issues. If the proprietress of a sch can shout at a parent, imagine what she’ll be doing to her staff. A school where the staff is not treated well, tell me where they’ll carry out their frustration. Children don’t just throw unnecessary tantrums, Parent should always watch their children attitude while taking their child to a new school. If your child cries once you’re approaching the school and always anxious to go immediately you get to that school. Mummy watch it there’s a problem.
 
CHILD’S WELFARE
Image Source: Chrisland Predegree College
panache_stitchesI changed my daughter’s creche after three months stay there, she doesn’t eat at home and they were assuring me that she eats in the creche. I knew they were lying to me when at her next immunization her weight has dropped. I was really sad and I changed the creche immediately. Where she is now, she is eating well and always happy whenever I drop and pick her 
nmasinachi1When my little daughter was in crèche,she always have cough & catarrh. She’s kinda being on antibiotics almost every month which I don’t like. I kept complaining and asked them if they have children with constant cold they said none. I went to pick her early one day and saw children with catarrh dropping down from their noses, saw one that another child is even playing with the mucus I shivered. I went to the office of the headmistress and call her to the class, she was like eehhh it was not like that maybe it just came out. I left the remaining money and that was my last their. I can’t even recommend there. It’s not cheap either cos it belongs to one church like that,. 

enniskidzzI changed my Son’s crèche back then. He was always down with a cold. I dropped him off one that and I called their attention to it and told them to please reduce the speed of the fan which they did. I got back in the evening to pick him up and the fan was on the highest speed with him directly under the fan. 

yewybinitieOh I changed my 2 yo son’s school after he came home one day with scratches on his face and neck no one at school could explain. Clearly, they were mixed with older children or something bit then d issue was not the injury…it was the fact that no one knew how or when it happened. 
bashhouseofdenimHe was having infection almost every month, he was always crying at the gate and he did that for 6months, I thought it was normal until I changed his school, the cry stoppedembrace.the.mess.you.areI had my sons in daycare for 3 weeks and the both of them would cry for 6 hours straight. I just had a feeling it was the childcare. I changed they cried for one week and its 3 years later and they are happy as can bebibbyscakes@oliveskovski it’s lack of hygiene
leesa_usifo@yewybinitie This happened to us.Cuts,a bump on her forehead.And nobody knew how!!!in short they were suggesting it happened in my house.Still so pissed.
i.am.odewunmi@fabmumng having this challenge currently.. Infection. Everything else is fantastic but this frequent bacteria infection.. My fear is, if I change to another creche, what’s the probability it won’t reoccur? Is there a way to prevent?
u4mabinoneYes!!! When my son said “mummy let’s not sleep so morning won’t come and you will take me to school”
agada_eneMy daughter came down with mumps, I took her to the hospital and met her classmate mum there, who told me her child was just recovering from it as well, I decided to go to the school, and I saw a child with his cheeks swollen obviously suffering from mumps, sitting in class with other healthy children. I was so angry and I called the Proprietress, She told me there was nothing she could do, because the child’s parents had gone to work and she can’t send him home.

 

STAFF COMPETENCY

Fort Yard

buitidanielI am changing my child’s school because her teacher has an accent and I don’t want it rubbing on my child imaging how she pronounces the letters of the eng alphabet. I can go On but then I know the foundation is key

gnepherCaregiver’s english was pathetic…we had to run🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️

verychiHe was in nursery 1. The elderly caregiver though nice and very maternal was too igbotic.

myorganiclivingI changed from the so called best school, because his teacher always complain about his inability to talk fast….He was a slow talker,she just couldn’t understand him, always make me feel bad each time I pick him by comparing him with other kids,I changed a yr ago, and he received award for the most improved during the recent graduation party at his new school, you need to hear how fast he talks now.

joan_la.belle.vieI was at the verge of changing the school when the teacher was kicked out. She would beat my 2yr9mths old just because he could not write. Oh if I remember the day I saw marks on his butt 3 hrs after he returned from school, I still weep. His crime was he cried for his mummy when he was supposed to be writing an exam. My son grew to hate school and the teacher so much so that when he heard that his little sister was soon to join him in school, he wept uncontrollably. Each time I remember I feel like a terrible mom. Thankfully, He is now comfortable with the school and tops his class.

ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
Photo Credit: Starfield College
candykidsngI am changing her school this September because of bad grammar
wigserviceI changed school because I wasn’t impressed with his performance. His teachers kept saying he was doing excellently well, but when I assess him at home it is the opposite! After spending so much on fees. His new school is by far better, they advice he repeated his class which i was in full support of. Foundation is key. He is doing extremely well, speaks well he even coaches his younger brother. I don’t regret it at all.
verychiI changed my son’s when I noticed he had developed igbo accent. He knocked at the door saying “kpai kpai here”.
littleangelsngYes. I changed my child’s school because the school was not truthful with my child’s actual performance. I found out they were always escalating her scores and padding the pupil’s scores for reasons beyond me🤷‍♀️
kidsgadgetsnpartiesThinking of changing cos of the grammar I see in her daily report
aism.aismTeacher never gave me feedback and no replies to my email she wasn’t welcoming. Also many students were failing I found out
littleangelsng@sparklinsatini How can my child’s lowest score in any subject be 98/100? Even in Yoruba language that she didn’t understand?

ABSENCE OF CO-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

Photo Credit: The Bells Comprehensive College
justadorablezWe changed because it was all about the book. The school didn’t really have extracurricular activities. We are in a better school now
smartbookeducationalservicesI changed my child’s school because he wasn’t exposed to extra curricular activities.
importeddiapers_ng I changed schools because my work schedule changed and the school didn’t have school bus facility. I was really pained. He joined another school in the second term and these one are just about book only. No soft skill whatsoever. I miss our former school.
camilla4rilWish I cud change mine. Academics is 90 percent n morals 10 percent. I don’t know why d believe that academics over rules morals by that high percentage. 😓😓😓😓
 

FEE INCREMENT

maliyalovesecrets I will be changing their school for the first time this September. They don’t just fumigate! I treat the kids for malaria every term…they return from school with mosquito bites. Secondly, school fee was increased by 25,000 without any explanation. They did the same last year but this time I can’t take it. I don’t know if changing their school will affect them psychologically.

aderonkefameso Hubby is thinking of changing my children school because of increment which am not comfortable with bcus am satisfied with the school they don’t change teachers any how and my child is ok. Still thinking really.

RELOCATION

comfymama.ngI changed because of distance. I wanted somewhere closer to home for security and safety reasons
debbiekunmiI changed due to location , and still happy she cope much better than I expected
onostephanie Changed my son from a very good school when we moved houses. We enrolled him in one of the so-called good schools in the area. It turned out to be our biggest mistake. I was practically his teacher. We couldn’t wait for the session to be over to pull him out. He’s doing very well in his new school now and am so proud.
partypops09Changed when I moved House , her other school was good never has issues with them 
lagoswholesalesI changed my children’s school because we moved houses and I prefer the new school much more, it is not about only book but many more extracurricular activity and the focus given per child. They don’t all have the same home work, it is based on the level the child is at the moment
wonderchildforkidsAm about to change school due to location changes, please if you know any good school around Ketu kindly recommend one to me
Oh yeah. Changed when I moved houses. I was so sad.
Photo: SchoolsCompass.com.ng Homepage

Are there other reasons you would want us to know about, kindly comment below.

11 ways to gather online reviews for your school

This is  the second in the series of my posts on importance of  online reviews to your school enrollment strategy. I outlined some reasons why you may want to embrace online reviews in my last post.

 

Getting online reviews for your school is not a rocket science but you have to make conscious efforts to achieve real success in it. The alternative to it which most school owners do is to leave it and do nothing about it – the consequence is grave and the risk is high.

For those who want to give it a try, here are 11 tips for achieving it.

1. Ask, Ask, and Ask: The truth is that if you don’t ask, you are not likely to get it. Customers are more prone to writing negative reviews about products than writing negative reviews. When last did you go online to tell the world how great this dress you bought looks on you? It is just natural.

Cultivate the habit of asking parents to review your service. You’ll be surprised by their willingness to do so.

2. Make it simple and seamless: If you are requesting your parents to drop a review for your school, be sure that you don’t make it complex – send them an email or SMS and make sure the message contains a link to the exact place where to write the review with clear instructions. Avoid a situation where they have to navigate there themselves or figure out what to do.

 3. Tell them what to expect: Unfortunately, most review sites require users to log in before they can write reviews. This is to prevent ‘spamming’ or any other automated and unwanted inputs but most users detest it.

If users are required to login before reviews are made, let the users know beforehand so they expect it and psychologically prepare for it. It is OK to manage such expectation, otherwise, it could be a roadblock that could get them irritated and leave the sites without writing any.

Photo Credit: Treasure Chest Place, Ajah

Take advantage of happy their moments:  When they come to you telling you how their children have improved academically under your tutelage and singing praises of your school. Take advantage of that moment, ask them to prove it by writing a review for your school.

Photo Credit: Blooming Green, Yaba

4. Don’t ask for positive feedback/review, ask them for honest feedback/review: Asking parents directly for positive reviews has automatically defeated the purpose of asking in the first place. There is a huge difference between ‘Positive’ and ‘Honest’ feedbacks in the mind of your customers. ’ You don’t want to come across as being forcefully or telling them that, ‘I know I don’t merit it, but do it for me’. That alone is negative, be careful with your choice of words.

 

5. Send email reminders to willing parents ONLY: It is very possible that some busy parents genuinely forget to write the review as promised, take time to check online to see if they have not done so and sent them a gentle reminder or SMS to nudge them to do so. In order not to appear intrusive, make sure you send to only parents you have had a conversation with before.

 

6. Start with your circle of friends: A good place to start your request for online reviews is your good friends among the parents who are not likely to say NO. This is called ‘low hanging fruits’. With this, you know what works in your approach and also what does not work. Perfect your strategy of reaching out and then launch it to other parents.

Photo Credit: Rainbow College Boarding

7. Take advantage of special events: Get a series of internet-ready devices on your special event days like PTA, inter-house sports and all that and politely asking parents to OPTIONALLY drop a review the same way you ask them to register their arrival. You may not get all of them to oblige but remember that reviews are not a game of numbers. One or two positive reviews could be all you need.

You may also decide to go ‘manual’ and offline to achieve the same purpose if you don’t have the resources. ’

8. Create a memorable and newsworthy event or scintillating performance:  According to James Hadley Chase, Goldfish have no hiding place‘. Try to organize a newsworthy event that attracts the attention of everyone in the space- even the government. This would definitely trend and fetch your school some ‘Accolades’. ’

Imagine one of your pupils wins N1M on ‘who wants to be a millionaire’ programme or had A1 in all his/her external examination.

Naturally, every parent of your school would like to identify with it, they likely go online themselves telling the whole world that they also have children in your school that are doing great – This give credence to the fact the success has many families but failure is an orphan. Take a deliberate effort to be extra successful and innovative and watch the magic!

10. Introduce incentives: Many parents see an online review as stressful that they don’t want to go through or make time for. As a school owner, putting yourself in their shoes will also have the same feeling running through your mind.

Naturally, customers behave like children and creating a review and reward promo in any of the school events by offering incentives such as simple chocolates, sweet, biscuit, tickets to watch films etc to parents can ease that stressed feeling and make reviewing your school sound exciting and simple to parents.

11. Be honest with it: Let parents know that this is to your benefit and it is just a favour you are asking from them. Don’t package it as if they are also benefiting from reviews when they are not.

 

 

 

8 Fun Ways To Keep Math Learning Alive Through the Summer

Summer is a time for play and rest, family time and adventures. But there’s compelling research to show that kids forget a lot of what they learned during the school year if they don’t have opportunities to continue reading, using their mathematical thinking skills and exploring the world around them.

It’s also been well-documented that the gaps between kids from high and low socioeconomic statuses grow over the summer. Affluent kids often have access to enriching experiences like travel, summer camp and visits to museums. Summer may be one of the most unequal times of the year, and that makes it hard on teachers in the fall. But there are plenty of low-cost ways to keep kids learning through the summer without sitting them down to do worksheets or drilling them on a math app.

Valorie Salimpoor is a trained neuroscientist who consults for the educational gaming company Cognition and has insight into helping kids who struggle with fractions. She also has two young kids of her own. She has been using her knowledge of the learning brain and her fascination with brain development to infuse her kids’ play time with math that’s fun and that sticks. Based on what she has seen work with her own kids, she’s pulled out some basic principles of fun activities parents can do with kids of many ages after school, on weekends, and during the summer.

“We know from a lot of research that there is a summer loss, and it seems to be more significant for math than it is for reading,” Salimpoor said. She thinks that could be because many adults are math anxious themselves, so when they imagine math activities for their kids they think about counting activities or doing math facts, while they enjoy reading to their children. Those activities are boring and don’t leverage what scientists have discovered about “sticky” learning.

Salimpoor has found good results utilizing eight traits of the learning brain to her advantage.

1. Engage intrinsic motivation

Intrinsic motivation is a powerful force for learning. People are most often intrinsically motivated when they have control over what they’re learning and have a sense of competence while engaging in the learning. The activity isn’t too hard or too easy; it’s just the right amount of challenging to keep the mind engaged.

“If you do a task when you have intrinsic motivation it significantly increases your performance and what you learn,” Salimpoor said. Because the activity itself is highly engaging to the learner, he pays more attention and the brain records the information better. “Any time there is more dopamine flowing in your reward systems, you are much more likely to consolidate the information better,” Salimpoor said.

She has found the easiest way to recreate that sense of “flow” with her children is to infuse math into activities they already love. For examples, her son loves Legos, so in addition to letting him build whatever he wants, she sometimes encourages him to make blueprints of what he’s planning to build. She asks him to predict how many blocks he’ll need and to think about scale, perimeter and area. She’s essentially infusing spatial awareness into an activity he’s already excited to do.

“This only works for people who are big fans of Lego. That’s sort of the whole point of this,” Salimpoor said.

Another example might work for kids who are passionate about Minecraft. With just a few small tweaks like planning what to build ahead of time, playing Minecraft can be mathematical. And Salimpoor said practising a little math every day is all it takes to keep skills sharp.

2. Engage emotional arousal

Emotion is an incredibly powerful part of learning that can easily get overlooked. “We can do a boring task over and over and not remember it, but you can experience an emotional moment once and remember it forever,” Salimpoor said. Emotion centres are tightly tied to memory centres, so when possible try to build emotion into summer activities.

It can be relatively simple to do. Even a project like building a kite together involves some climactic moments of heightened suspense that will be memorable. Making a stellar kite will require research, planning, measuring, sketches and probably some trial and error. The first time the child throws the kite in the air to see if it flies will be an emotional moment filled with suspense. And it’s more than likely the design will require more tinkering, and hence more math.

“The whole idea here is you’re thinking about it and revising your strategy,” Salimpoor said.

It could take all summer to build the perfect kite, but along the way will be several climactic moments, along with more learning, revising and planning. The math is embedded in a fun activity that has an emotional payoff.

3. Use extrinsic rewards wisely

Using extrinsic rewards to get kids to do things is a controversial, though common, practice. Some research indicates that when kids are rewarded for doing things they already like, they lose interest in the activity. That’s one reason some experts don’t recommend rewards for reading — it implies that reading is work, not fun, and must be rewarded.

However, Salimpoor points out that there are some parts of math that just aren’t as fun as others. Practice is an important part of math and is perhaps the best candidate for gamification and careful use of extrinsic rewards. This is where understanding how the brain responds to different reward schedules is important.

“Knowing that a desirable reward is coming, but not knowing when it will come or what it will be is the highest output,” Salimpoor said.

She compares this kind of reward to the dopamine rush adults experience when playing the slot machines. The player knows it’s possible to win, but has no idea whether the win will come on the first try or 100th try. And, the size of the reward is also unknown. That makes winning even sweeter.

“Releasing dopamine is really good because it makes you want to continue and has the double effect of helping you consolidate the information,” Salimpoor said. “Knowing what situations are likely to release dopamine might be all you need” to make a dull task more exciting.

She has found that if she can build excitement and unpredictability into an activity, it creates a fertile ground for learning. She might reward her kids with tokens that can be exchanged for something they want after they’ve completed some number of problems or tasks. But the key, she says, is to vary when she gives them out and how many. It may seem counterintuitive, but this variability actually makes kids want to continue because they don’t know how much they’ll get.

Salimpoor said often parents try to be consistent with extrinsic rewards because that’s what they’ve learned works for moderating a child’s behaviour. But the opposite is true with learning; variability primes the brain.

Salimpoor emphasizes that extrinsic rewards should be used sparingly and only for the kinds of tasks kids don’t really want to do. Gamifying them makes it more fun, and thus more memorable.

4. Engage the brain’s predictive power

Part of being human is making predictions based on the schema we hold in our brains. And when the prediction leads to an exciting result the brain releases dopamine, which helps cement learning. Parents can harness this tendency by encouraging kids to predict things that have some significance to them.

Salimpoor says these strategies work well with things that regularly update and that a child can check daily. A parent might give the child a hundred imaginary dollars to buy stocks, for example. It takes some calculating and watching patterns to pick investments, and then together parent and child can check the stock prices every day.

“The idea is you’re getting excited to check this every day,” Salimpoor said. “You want to do the math to see how much you won or lost. And because you’re thinking about it every day, you’re calculating percentages and decimals.”

Maybe parents even give kids the interest on their stocks in real money, once they’ve calculated it. Another, less financially focused option, is to do the same thing with sports statistics — updating and calculating averages and percentages.

5. Provide a larger goal

Stories and books inherently come with the bigger picture of a narrative, making them attractive to many kinds of learners. Often math isn’t taught with that bigger goal in mind, but it could be.

“Take math and make it more like reading a storybook,” Salimpoor said. She does projects with her sons that have a beginning, middle and end. Kitchen projects are often good for this type of longer-term project. For example, she and her sons did an experiment where they left different kinds of fruit in the sun and weighed them each day to calculate the water loss.

“It’s also great for the brain because you’re starting out by planning a framework of what you want to do, and how you’re going to do it, and that establishes a storyboard in your head,” Salimpoor said. Then every day of the project, the child has to review the information learned and add more to it. “This is the best method of learning because you’re taking synapses that you’ve already formed and strengthening them.”

She even had her sons graph the fruit’s water loss as another way of adding math to this project. Another time they set up an experiment to see which kitchen containers preserved food the best. Each day they checked for mould, graphing the percentage of mould each day.

“It’s kind of fun to see and you look forward to seeing it because you want to see how your experiment has changed on a daily basis.”

6. Use math as a secondary element of a project

There are tons of ways to involve math in a project where the main purpose isn’t mathematical, like baking. The point is the cookies (obviously), but it doesn’t hurt to figure out the fractions and ratios together along the way. This method has the added advantage of taking math anxiety — a real phenomenon for many kids — out of the picture.

“The reason this is my favourite is it helps you realize how math applies in the real world,” Salimpoor said. She has watched her sons begin to notice math throughout their lives and become more interested in it.

Other ideas Salimpoor has tried in order to infuse math into other activities :

  • Make a spectrum of colour using different ratios of colour dyes and water.
  • Calculate density with different solutions of water, sugar and dye. Try to get different densities for different colours.
  • Calculate a summer budget. Have kids think about how much money they’ll need for summer expenses daily, weekly and monthly.
  • When driving somewhere, ask kids to calculate the best route based on gas consumption, distance and time.

7. Use visual-spatial tasks

One of the difficult things about math is that it requires the ability to manipulate abstract concepts in one’s mind. Adults have established pathways for this type of abstract thinking built up over time, so it’s easy to forget how complicated that is for someone learning a math concept for the first time.

“For someone just learning these, it’s very important to take abstract ideas and connect them to visual or spatial concepts,” Salimpoor said. “The more we can do this the stronger the foundations will become.”

That’s one reason early elementary classrooms are filled with math manipulatives. Salimpoor says this is crucial, especially when kids are young because it helps to develop a more complete neural network connected to different senses. The abstract becomes concrete when it’s connected to experiences kids can see and touch.

“If all the systems link together to form a concept, that’s a great situation to be in because activating any part of this system activates the rest of the system as well,” Salimpoor said.

Once again Legos are a great toy to make abstract math concepts concrete. Salimpoor has also tried geometric bubble makers, encouraging her kids to play around with different shapes to see what kind of bubbles they make.

She has also had a lot of fun playing with music and math — filling cups with different ratios of water, banging on them and talking about patterns in the sounds.

“Give them the activity to play around with,” she said. It’s tempting to tell kids how the ratios relate to sounds, or how different wand shapes affect bubbles, but kids will learn more if they discover it on their own.

8. Consider the cognitive load

Cognitive load refers to the amount of information one can keep in one’s head, manipulate and process at any given time. It’s often related to working memory, and is easy to overtax and is often overlooked. Sometimes kids experience math anxiety because they don’t have good working memory, not because they don’t understand the concepts.

“There’s a large difference in children’s working memory even if they’re the same age,” Salimpoor said. “If their working memory is overloaded they can’t process new information as well.”

Taking detailed notes or using manipulatives are ways to free up working memory as a child is learning something new. Parents can spot cognitive overload if a child was engaged but suddenly starts staring blankly. It’s also helpful to make new concepts as concrete as possible so they don’t require so much working memory.

Neuroscientists are still trying to understand working memory better. There’s consensus that it’s very difficult to generalize working memory, but why and how to improve it is less well understood. If the goal is to improve working memory on math tasks, the practice has to be on math tasks. Doing “brain games” will improve working memory only on those specific tasks, not all tasks.

“All of these things are very established things about how the brain works in humans and animals,” Salimpoor said.

It takes a little extra work to think about how math could fit into an activity a child is already excited about, but the more seamlessly it can be infused, the more kids will begin to see mathematical thinking as an integral part of life and play. Salimpoor intentionally tries to use to her advantage what she knows about how her sons’ brains work, but she has also reaped the benefit of spending fun quality time with them.

First published by Mindshift

 

 

 

 

 

What Makes a Good School Culture?

Most principals have an instinctive awareness that organizational culture is a key element of school success. They might say their school has a “good culture” when teachers are expressing a shared vision and students are succeeding — or that they need to “work on school culture” when several teachers resign or student discipline rates rise.

But like many organizational leaders, principals may get stymied when they actually try to describe the elements that create a positive culture. It’s tricky to define, and parsing its components can be challenging. Amid the push for tangible outcomes like higher test scores and graduation rates, it can be tempting to think that school culture is just too vague or “soft” to prioritize.

That would be a mistake, according to Ebony Bridwell-Mitchell, an expert in education leadership and management. As she explains, researchers who have studied culture have tracked and demonstrated a strong and significant correlation between organizational culture and an organization’s performance. Once principals understand what constitutes culture — once they learn to see it not as a hazy mass of intangibles, but as something that can be pinpointed and designed — they can start to execute a cultural vision.

At a recent session of the National Institute for Urban School Leaders at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Bridwell-Mitchell took a deep dive into “culture,” describing the building blocks of an organization’s character and fundamentally how it feels to work there.

Culture Is Connections

A culture will be strong or weak depending on the interactions between the people in the organization, she said. In a strong culture, there are many, overlapping, and cohesive interactions among all members of the organization.  As a result, knowledge about the organization’s distinctive character — and what it takes to thrive in it — is widely spread and reinforced. In a weak culture, sparse interactions make it difficult for people to learn the organization’s culture, so its character is barely noticeable and the commitment to it is scarce or sporadic.

Beliefs, values, and actions will spread the farthest and be tightly reinforced when everyone is communicating with everyone else. In a strong school culture, leaders communicate directly with teachers, administrators, counsellors, and families, who also all communicate directly with each other.
A culture is weaker when communications are limited and there are fewer connections. For example, if certain teachers never hear directly from their principal, an administrator is continually excluded from communications, or any groups of staff members are operating in isolation from others, it will be difficult for messages about shared beliefs and commitments to spread.
Culture Is Core Beliefs and Behaviors

Within that weak or strong structure, what exactly people believe and how they act depends on the messages — both direct and indirect — that the leaders and others in the organization send. A good culture arises from messages that promote traits like collaboration, honesty and hard work.

Culture is shaped by five interwoven elements, each of which principals have the power to influence: 

Fundamental beliefs and assumptions, or the things that people at your school consider to be true. For example: “All students have the potential to succeed,” or “Teaching is a team sport.”
Shared values or the judgments people at your school make about those belief and assumptions — whether they are right or wrong, good or bad, just or unjust. For example: “It’s wrong that some of our kindergarteners may not receive the same opportunity to graduate from a four-year college,” or “The right thing is for our teachers to be collaborating with colleagues every step of the way.”
Norms, or how members believe they should act and behave, or what they think is expected of them. For example: “We should talk often and early to parents of young students about what it will take for their children to attend college.” “We all should be present and engaged at our weekly grade-level meetings.”
Patterns and behaviours, or the way people actually act and behave in your school. For example, There are regularly-scheduled parent engagement nights around college; there is active participation at weekly team curriculum meetings. (But in a weak culture, these patterns and behaviours can be different than the norms.)
Tangible evidence, or the physical, visual, auditory, or other sensory signs that demonstrate the behaviours of the people in your school. For example, Prominently displayed posters showcasing the district’s college enrollment, or a full parking lot an hour before school begins on the mornings when curriculum teams meet.
Each of these components influences and drives the others, forming a circle of reinforcing beliefs and actions, Bridwell-Mitchell says; strong connections among every member of the school community reinforce the circle at every point.

First published by Mindshift

 

 

Over 30 Educational Websites for Teachers

Here is one of the popular infographics we published in the past. It features over 30 educational web tools teachers can use in their teaching and professional development. This visual is based on our  Ultimate EdTech Chart. “We arranged these websites into 8 different categories and for each of these categories we came up with four websites that best represent the selected content area. The categories we have included are websites for language arts teachers, websites for math teachers, websites for science teachers, websites for physics teachers, websites for history teachers,  websites for social studies teachers, websites for art teachers, and websites for music teachers.  You can find links to the websites in this chart”.

Enjoy!

First published by Educators Technology

 

 

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Internet and Social Media in Education

Quality Education has been identified and determined through educational resources, learning and teaching processes, adequate and current materials etc. Accessibility to quality education and its importance in the society cannot be overemphasized. The 21st century has provided us with the greatest tool in achieving a quality education. Social Media is not only a means to increase participation but to develop and attract possible means of making education well worth the time and effort. From awareness to learning opportunities to better interaction to getting projects done easily, social media has been a great means to achieve the main objectives of quality education. It is a known fact that Social Media is here to stay as all spheres of life have been influenced with its use. Communication is easier, faster and more convenient with social media, the transaction is stress-free, discovering opportunities and developing creative ideas has been given a boost by Social Media. Education is not left out as schools and their administrators have keyed into the world wide web in improving the quality of education provided. Just like every other thing, the internet and Social Media has its advantages and disadvantages. We outline them in the article below.

ADVANTAGES

Increased Learning Participation and Collaboration

Statistics have shown that the number of participants in the educational system has increased over the years since the creation of Social Media. More Students are willing to school as we can see through the use of online distance learning. There are teachers who are strictly E-teachers and help to increase learning opportunities. Researchers have also contributed their quota through easy access to their research and articles on various topics via the internet and Social Media platforms. Stakeholders in the Educational system are able to participate more and get the best through the incorporation of Social Media. There is increased collaboration of education with technology, health, finance, governance etc. This is seen through adequately published researches and articles, production of materials to enhance the quality of education, easy financial transactions, health education and promotion, increase in political participation by students etc. Students are able to interact more with their fellow students across the globe, teachers and have access to a wide range of academic materials. This interaction gives a boost to learning opportunities and participation.

Improved quality of Educational services

Thanks to the Internet, educational services are of better quality and greater resourcefulness. This quality is achieved as schools are able to benchmark their offerings with globally accepted standards across the world, through a simple google search. Students have easy access to materials and can embark on projects with convenience. Students can learn more, know more and share more. Conferences are easily attended as Video and Online Conferences are making waves. Students gain more especially those that are really active on Social Media and e-forums. Networking is easier and more productive, this way quality of educational services improve. Exams are now conducted online and are graded as well. All these help to improve the quality of Education especially now that the world revolves around technology.

DISADVANTAGES

Everything that has advantages must have disadvantages. Social Media and e-learning despite its numerous benefits also have drawbacks. As much as it is useful, it can be a huge source of distraction for students whose attention is difficult to keep sustained on school work. Most of these students end up using the internet, e-learning platforms and social media to connect with people for the sole purpose of socializing. Statistics have shown that a large percentage of people are constantly active on Social Media platforms just for the sake of socializing. Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter, Instagram have no closing time, it gives access to a 24/7 activity. If students are not properly monitored, they can neglect the reasons for using Social Media in Education and focus on distracting and time-wasting activities. This monitoring should also be extended to the type of contents viewed by Students on Social Media. All sorts of contents are available on Social Media and only strict monitoring is the adequate filter in ensuring students do not stumble on inappropriate contents.

Conclusion

The Internet and Social Media has been established to be a great tool in Education. It has served as a means to improving the quality of education. Just has it has its advantages, it has its disadvantages. Proper use and positive acknowledgement of these platforms would help enhance quality Education, while every participant makes the best out of it. What have you benefited from the use of the Internet and Social Media in Education? Comment below.

 

5 tips to increase your enrollment this September

According to a recent research conducted by SchoolsCompass, an average parent changes school once every three years. And most of these changes take place at the beginning of every session- September . Top on the list of their reasons or change is unsatisfactory academic performance, relocation and economic reality.

Photo credit: Blooming greens School

As your schools wind up for the session, the race for September admission gets more intense. Yes, a lot of prospective parents could find their way into your admission office for inquiry. Chances are that they are also considering other schools making the competition tougher.

 

If you’re just hanging on and doing everything the way you did it last year and the one before simply because of busyness – or maybe just because you don’t feel like anything needs changing – then you could be missing plenty of opportunities for reaching and enrolling new families.

 

Here are 5 things you should do to take advantage of this peak season:

1. Insist on initial commitment before any negotiation/consensus 

Photo credit: Naija Going Abroad

This is probably the litmus test to know how committed prospective parents are. Most of the times, it is masked in ‘Application Form’.  The idea behind this is not to force parents to enroll their wards but to extract a little commitment, avoid time wasters and enables you to focus all your strategies and energy on ‘Serious People ONLY’ for optimal performance.

2. Push the Panic Button 

Photo credit: First Things

Encourage parents who enroll in say less than say 15 days from the day of their first inquiry or visit.  Give a little discount say 5% of tuition fee to push the panic button could go a long way to sway a decision in your favor. You may end up spending more-  in time and other resources if you have to follow up on them just because it takes them a longer time to decide.

 

3. Help them complete the admission form

Photo credit: Albesta Academy

Where possible, go through and complete the application form with them to understand and address possible reservations and roadblocks in your questions. If they don’t have instant answers to these questions while completing it at home, it may cause other rounds of decision making which may or may not favor your school.

 

4. Give them something to remember about your school

Photo credit: Concordia Junior Academy, Yola

A simple branded pen or exercise book, when taken home after visiting your school could create a ‘top of the mind’ awareness about your school. When it is time to make a decision, the name of your school will always come to mind.  Call it a souvenir, you are on track.

 

5. Connect with them outside business

Photo credit: Rainbow College

Let prospective parents know that you also value the relationship with them beyond enrolling their ward in your school. Remember, they left their businesses to visit your business premises, show them you also care about their businesses as well. Take pictures with them and connect them on social media where necessary. With this, you are not just a prospective client, you are a friend and most people buy from friends.

 

 

WHY STUDENTS CHEAT AND WHAT CAN BE DONE ABOUT IT

Dubbing, Scopes, Expo, Giraffing, –if you have passed through the Nigerian school system you are sure to have come across these slangs being thrown around or you might have even used them yourself. Cheating, as we have witnessed in schools, encompasses homework, class tests, school exams and government board exams; and with the internet making things a lot faster and easier for everyone, plagiarism and electronic cheating can easily be done without the educator even realizing the act has been perpetuated. As cheating in schools grows to epidemic proportions, Nigerian private schools are not spared from its onslaught. In fact, in their own warped form of parent-teacher association, there have been many reported incidences of parents and teachers colluding to help students gain the unfair advantage on tests and exams. So why do students cheat? What can you as a school administrator do to prevent cheating in your school? Read on, as we analyze this pressing issue and outline the three major reasons why students cheat and methods you can adopt to prevent and curb this now.

 

All the Accolades, None of the Effort
Most students want all the credit that comes with having good grades without actually putting in the work. When it comes to homework or projects, students are typically caught plagiarizing by lifting whole pages of text from guidebooks or even going online to copy and rephrase other people’s work. The average student today is lethargic when it comes to doing any sort of work –

Source: The White Dove Schools

homework, school work, housework, you name it. Growing up in the internet age where years of manual labour have been reduced and automated to a single click of a button has helped reinforce this mentality in their minds. And so when it comes to tests and exams, their thoughts are focused erroneously on how to get the most results – good grades, in the shortest amount of time without putting in the work – studying and practising. Cheating to get ahead is the best route for this students.

 

What’s in it for me?
With the likes of Big Brother Nigeria and fast-to-fame musicians gracing their television screens, students are gradually losing faith and trust in the traditional and academic route to success. Students in this age have idolized celebrities who make it to the limelight without passing through the traditional route of academics and respectable careers, or without having put in substantial amount of academic work to gain success. The typical student has now accepted that academic excellence does not equate to success in the future and has set his mind to do whatever it takes to rush through the system and start working on other routes to success. So while in school, they cheat because they do not see the overall value of the system, and want to “fulfil all righteousness” to please their parents, educators and school/government boards.

All A+, no A-

Source: The Bells Comprehensive Secondary School.

Unrealistic expectations from parents and educators, also contribute to the high rate of cheating in schools. Students typically feel pressured to achieve academic feats that are beyond their cognitive capacity. Parents are the number one source of this pressure, which they pile on by verbally and sometimes physically assaulting their children or by unfairly comparing them to their mates. This negatively affects the child’s self-esteem and puts them under undue pressure to perform in order to maintain a peaceful state at home. Teachers are also not spared from this as they are constantly being pressured by school administrators to deliver top-performing students consistently every year. This pressure trickles down from the teachers to the students again and adds to the overwhelming pressure faced by students. Students end up cheating in order to please both parties in such a situation.

 

So, what can be done about this?

 

 

First and foremost, schools must develop and enforce zero tolerance policies for cheating and ensure that teachers are at the forefront of enforcement. Schools must stay vigilant and updated on all the new forms of cheating especially electronic cheating and online plagiarism as students now have unlimited and unsupervised access to mobile phones and the internet. Weave ethical behaviour lessons into the curriculum thereby inspiring students to act ethically when it comes to cheating and plagiarism,

Source: Grenville Schools

not just in class and in the here and now, but also in the future in their careers and businesses. Teachers also, must make the whole learning experience and curriculum exciting and engaging while teaching real-life value and application of every topic taught in the classroom. Students must be counselled to understand the important role academics and education plays in the lives and future career paths.

 

Conclusion
While strong and effective disciplinary actions are necessary, it is imperative that school administrators properly understand the problem of cheating in their schools and what motivates students to perpetuate these acts. In so doing you will be able to properly address the situation with any of our suggested approaches or any other method that you feel will suit your school. How are you dealing with cheating in your school? Let us know in the comment below.

First published by Allprotech

 

 

ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GETTING PARENTS INVOLVED IN SCHOOL

Increasing workloads….
Longer working hours….

Parents these days are faced with the challenge of finding spare time to be actively involved in their child’s education. As a school administrator, you can easily detect dwindling levels of parental involvement with obvious signs such as the low parent turn out at parent-teacher meetings and other school events, and subtle signs such as homework not being done and low student attendance rates. In an ideal situation, there is active and constant parent involvement where parents help with homework, contribute at school meetings, and communicate regularly with the school.
In this article, we cover the immense benefits of parental involvement and steps you can take today to get parents more involved in school.

Benefits of Parent Involvement

Source: Rainbow College

Parental involvement is a win-win situation for everyone –students, teachers and parents themselves. Students’ scholarly achievement improves as parents are more attentive to their wards ensuring homework is completed on time and accurately, further study is carried out at home as well as supplementary guidance and counselling. These students get better grades, pay more attention in the classroom and have a clearer understanding of the direction their education is taking them towards the development of their career and future.
Teachers communicate better with parents who are actively involved and partner with these parents in the successful development of the child. Unusual behaviours, commendable actions and other matters relating to the child’s welfare are communicated swiftly between both parties for any necessary action to be taken.
Parents have a better understanding of school objectives and are able to develop meaningful relationships with teachers and administrative staff. They also gain insight into the school curriculum, school activities and supplementary programs offered by the school and available to their children.

 

How to Get Parents Involved

Communicate Often

Source: Kaztal Kiddies Academy-Montessori

 

It is important to maintain the flow of information between your school, teachers and the parents. The amount of effort put into disseminating information to the parents must also be directed at receiving and processing feedback from these parents. Parents that perceive that their opinions are actively being solicited and employed are more eager and likely to be actively involved in school affairs. So what means of communication can you adopt? Emails, newsletters and forums are some of the most convenient and effective means of communication for both parties – school and parent.

Information regarding the individual child’s behaviour, grades and overall performance can be communicated promptly to the parents via email where the parent is able to review and respond within minutes. Newsletters can contain relevant information regarding upcoming school activities, special teaching practices and curriculum information, thereby keeping the parents abreast of all that is going on within the school premises. Forums can be online on the school’s website portal, mobile on the school’s official WhatsApp group or offline through meetings and events; all these avenues create a friendly and open ground for parents, teachers and administrative staff to openly discuss matters and receive feedback in real-time.

Involve Parents in the Classroom

Source: The Bells Comprehensive Secondary School

Get students and parents excited about involvement through direct interactions in the classrooms. Schools that report high levels of parent involvement have achieved this by arranging special programs that require parent’s presence in the classroom. You can replicate these programs by organizing career days where each parent prepares a brief presentation to their child’s class about what they do and the steps they took with their education to achieve their current positions, and possibly offer short consultation time after the presentation for students that have similar aspirations. Another special program can be culture days where students and parents adorn themselves in their cultural attires and educate the class about their traditions, practices and history. Parents can also be encouraged to go the extra mile by preparing snacks of their local delicacies to be shared amongst the students.

Encourage Volunteering

Source: Ash Merlyn International School

With school activities and programs scheduled round the clock, it is easy to create volunteering opportunities for parents in multiple areas that could get them excited about getting involved in school activities. School events such as end-of-year parties are a hotbed of volunteering opportunities where parents can volunteer as event hosts, coordinators, servers, security and more. This laid-back scene allows the parents to interact socially with each other as well as have an overview of the ecosystem in which their child is groomed. They get to meet their child’s schoolmates and observe their social skills and behaviour. Parents can also volunteer to manage sporting events within the school, where they can take on the supervisory role of coordinator or a more active role of referee or coach. Other volunteering opportunities include attending and supervising field trips, directing drama clubs and much more. Volunteering helps form a bond between the students, parents and teachers where a more communal relationship is developed.

Conclusion

Parents are the most important players in the holistic development of a child and schools can benefit immensely from their direct and indirect support. Schools should ensure that significant amount of effort and resources are committed to the creation of productive, meaningful and sustainable relationships with the parents.

First published by Allprotech

 

 

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