The World Economic Forum (WEF) released a paper in 2019 focused on evolving learning content towards the needs of the future. It has been classified under the categories Global Citizenship, Innovation and Creativity, Technology and Interpersonal Skills.
Based on these four key areas, I will assess the overall roadmap of the Curriculum Development Center (CDC) which has tried to make changes in the field of education as the process has already been executed from 1st to the 3rd year.
While the process is underway to approve the changes in the upper levels also in a gradual manner, I would like to offer some suggestions in the development procedure as it is possible to improve it in order to meet the needs of tomorrow.
Looking at the existing model of the curriculum that we applied in the school, he intends to create more factory workers to fill in the boxes.
The question that comes up often is: “Does the curriculum allow us to reimagine, reframe or reinvent?” “
Whether we like it or not, the reality of COV-ID-19 has radically changed the educational dimension.
Students today are different from those of the past, and today’s needs will not be the same as yesterday.
In light of this situation, allow me to address some of the emerging concerns that the CDC must address for a better future through means, methods and modes.
Let’s talk about the means first. Priority sets our interest and, unfortunately, we have failed to make education our priority.
Arun R. Joshi, director of the Center for Human Assets at the Institute for Integrated Development Studies in Kathmandu, rightly argues that Nepal has failed to realize the importance of education, investing only 3.7% of its gross domestic product (GDP) in education, compared to other developing countries such as Ethiopia, Senegal and Mozambique which have invested more.
One of the reasons Nepal is unable to participate in global education competitions is that the government has not prioritized education while allocating resources.
Most competitive economies have stressed the importance of investing in education and human development as a ânationalâ priority. Even developed Asian countries such as Korea and Singapore had invested heavily in education to become today’s highly competitive global economies.
How can we hope to produce a quality workforce when the investment itself is very low? And how can we expect innovation when the system remains so rigid? Second, it’s with the methods we struggle with even though the CDC has been working for decades improvising the methodology.
We have failed to address the constructivist reality in a changing global scenario.
Changing the curriculum from Grades 1 to 3 has not guaranteed the transformation of pedagogy, as teachers are not oriented according to the changes. Our focus has remained on content rather than process.
Teachers in remote areas of Nepal have no idea why textbooks are frequently changed. Therefore, they continue with their traditional methods, even though they have the revised curriculum.
Does this justify our objective? Certainly not!
With this, I would like to underline the need for a constructive pedagogy, which promotes creativity and diversity.
This would agree with educators Alan Pritchard and John Woollard who believe that learners are not just receivers; rather, they are the ones who give meaning to knowledge.
Therefore, our methods should be oriented towards the students rather than towards the teacher as the center of the classroom.
Our content is more product-related than inherently emancipatory.
The German philosopher JÃ¼rgen Habermas rightly defines three different human interests: technical, practical and emancipatory.
A question that is often asked in pedagogy is whether there is a space for observation and experience where students can ask questions and also offer him his knowledge.
COVID-19 having pushed pedagogy into a new dimension of teaching-learning, we are still not open to constructive learning mode. This remains a challenge for teachers and the CDC.
Finally, I suggest the learning mode, which is made up of both language and culture. Let me start with the example given by Professor Bal Chandra Luitel of how the legacy of Durbar High School was accepted as a de facto model of learning, where English is seen as the elite language. most appropriate as a means of teaching and learning, degrading the possibility of 136 languages ââthat we already have in our country. So we always focus on English in educational institutions. However, the attempt to build the “Mero Serofero” from levels 1 to 3 is commendable.
Another important framework that we can integrate is the cultural mode.
Rameshower Aryal from the University of Kathmandu illustrates in his article the use of local resources such as the nanglo, a round, flat woven bamboo tray, to teach mathematical formulas.
One of the three areas of the Proximal Development Zone (ZPD) concept, developed by Soviet psychologist Leg Vygotsky, shows that what learners observe about the scholarly world plays an important role in bringing about change.
Therefore, the CDC should pay attention to language and cultural mode while revising the program as a whole.
A further insertion of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) pedagogy, encouraged by the University of Kathmandu, may be able to give impetus to educational change in Nepal.
BC is pursuing his Masters in STEAM Education at the University of Kathmandu
A version of this article appears in the December 10, 2021 print of The Himalayan Times.