Should Learning Include Individualisation?
The education system was founded for factory workers. Until today, most of our education system may not be problematic solely because they are business orientated, but because they annihilate freedom and individualisation.
For six to seven hours a day, the teacher presents the curriculum; the learners listen, follow instructions, study for tests and do homework, and mostly forget the content straight after. On a smaller scale, education to learners is simply learning is to pass. Many of the topics our learners are learning now don’t relate to 21st-century skills needed or relate to today’s learners. Education can be influential when effectively enforced upon; however, if not, it can result in negative consequences for all. Learners are bored, and teachers are frustrated.
There is the narrative that if you follow the rules and get results as expected, you are smart and will be successful. Therefore, these learners are praised, but others may be deemed unintelligent and worry for no success. This narrative is untrue. The skills taught concentrate on problem-solving. Solve the question or equation, as the memo and book say. But when every learner is taught the same content and skills in the same way, there is no chance for individuality and creativity. They have no opportunity to learn in variation.
Instead of ranking the learners based on marks, but on development and growth - what could be the results when we include that individualisation of passions, interest, hands-on, interactive, personalised, and the learner to learn the content themselves with a teacher’s guidance?
By taking away the learning goal that it’s purely for marks, we allowing space for each learner to discover their individual abilities, their interests, expressing themselves with their passion, showcasing their creativity and knowledge as they strive, and allowing exploration in their learning and within themselves. We are concentrating on them as people developing and not solely on their test answers.
Proposing them to find out by themselves their educational journey individually benefits them with independence, responsibility, entrepreneurship, expression, teamwork, and proving their capabilities beyond the report. Moreover, it is a chance for knowing life skills after school.
Teachers need to provide guidance and mentorship to celebrate each learner’s individuality for their educational and personal journeys. By including learning and unique individualisation into education, we celebrate the learners as the central part of the classroom and swopping the roles of the learners being their own teachers.
Individuality is defined by Google as; ‘The quality or character of a particular person or thing that distinguishes them from others of the same kind, especially when strongly marked’. And a synonym is identity. Thus, a crucial part a learner needs to create for themselves during their schooling years.
All in all, individuality in learning needs to be showcased to create their identity by celebrating strengths and interests. And as a teacher to find out about them, academically and personally.