Kofi Anaman, a child education advocate and philanthropist based in the Ellembelle District of the Western Region has advised the Ghana Education Serv
Kofi Anaman, a child education advocate and philanthropist based in the Ellembelle District of the Western Region has advised the Ghana Education Service (GES) to adopt Project-Based Learning (PBL) in teaching.
This he believes, will help students develop their cognitive approach which enables them develop ideas.
“As we all know, ideas always lead to creativity and eventually develop new ideas, ” saying, PBL focuses on critical thinking and problem solving.
Speaking to this reporter over the weekend at Aiyinasi, the Educationist noted that the philosophy challenges students to solve community problems.
He explained “Students will identify problems in their communities, discover one that they find particularly interesting, and brainstorm ways to address or solve them.”
Ghana, he said would be a better place to live when children are taught ways to own their communities.
“Just imagine asking a class 3 student to identify a problem in her community, develop a plan, budget and timeline to solve that problem?” he quizzed.
According to Anaman, the classroom will become more engaging through the active participation in projects that focuses on real issues rather than just attending classes and getting lectured.
“I am not a big fan of the lecture method”, he said.
He asked “Did you know that the lecture method was created when textbooks were handwritten?”
Me Anaman continued “During those days, more textbooks could not be written because there were no typewriters and computers, so the instructor (lecturer) was the only person with the only handwritten textbook which he lectured from. Besides, studies have also shown that, five days after attending a lecture, students can remember only five percent of whatever was lectured”.
He emphasized that “not only is lecturing the oldest method of teaching, but also, it places the attention on the teacher, instead of the students”.
“I am not saying we should get rid of lecture method completely. What I am advocating for is that, we must limit its usage and focus more on different methods of teaching such as the project based learning because the PBL philosophy connects students and schools to their communities”, he clarified.
He suggested that “even if we want to hold on to classroom lectures, we must do it using, for example, the EDGE (Explain, Demonstrate, Guide, Edge) method”.
He added that “With the EDGE method, the teacher first explains to the students what she wants to solve or teach by telling them the steps involved. The teacher then demontrate by showing the students how it is done before guiding and coaching them to try to solve the problem themselves.
“Once steps one to three are done, the teacher then enables the students by letting them solve the problem themselves without any interference. Besides the fact that the edge method is an experiential learning, it also encourages intellectual curiosity amongst our students. We don’t want our students to sit in classrooms to just listen and take notes. We want them to be involved in the teaching and learning process, hence the PBL philosophy,” he stressed.
According to him, project based education is the future and the time to embrace it is now.
“The ‘chew and pour’ type of education we have isn’t helping so we need to change the educational direction in our country. We want educational system that leads to innovation. The kind that teaches the wisdom required in today’s world,” he intimated.
Mr. Kofi Anaman is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Future Builder Scouts, an after school enrichment program that focuses on citizenship, leadership development and service to community and country.
Source: Daniel Kaku