Building character, for life, with Drama
Creating independence through Culinary skills
Enhancing the mind through Music
Preparing for a Technology & Digital Future
Team work and developing EQ and Leadership skills
Integrated learning, music, sports, cooking, projects
Interest Motivated Education
Sequential., self-paced gradient unique work programs
The world, inside and outside, is our classroom
The SMARTT School, as the name implies (Self Motivated Real Time Training) is based on the foundations of interest-based learning. A child will naturally, at the early stages of learning, explore the world around them based on a strong, self-motivated, interest to know. They naturally will use all senses available to them of sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste, as well as intuitive and intangible innate extended perceptions. They don’t have to be told to be interested, they just are the most amazing free, creative, and inquisitive creatures around.
Unfortunately however, once they are installed within general existing schooling systems, which have failed to grow and change with a rapidly changing world around us, they tend to lose this natural inquisitive interest as they are told “What” to learn “When” to understand it and “How” much time they have to learn it in, thereby taking away that natural self-motivated inquisitive nature.
The current Education system leaves a lot to be desired, including, but not limited to:
What is being taught:
Currently, Everything within mainstream schools is taught without any thought about its relevance to the real world that the child is growing up in and will have to work in. The curriculum is outdated and inflexible. Our children are simply controlled by the “System” and their independent critical thinking skills are bit by bit whittled away with the removal of their self-determinism. “Read this”. “Read it how I tell you”, “Sit here and do that”. “No, you don’t get to choose your subjects, not at least till the last 2 years of your schooling”, “We don’t have time to explore your questions I, your teacher have to get you through the curriculum!”.
How it is being taught:
“Copy everything that is there on the board”. “Reproduce it verbatim in the examinations to get full credit”. This is removing our children’s ability to think for themselves and considerably weakens their adulthood opportunities for future success. 90% of the ‘teaching’ happens in closed classrooms where all students face the teacher who delivers hour-long monologues. There is little to no interaction and dialogue.
The dangerous obsession with scores, grades, and benchmarks:
There’s the class topper. And then 2 more kids in the top 3. That is what you should strive for. To be the ‘best’ among 50 other kids. To outscore your classmates. To mindlessly memorize facts and figures and solve questions in the books because the same would appear, verbatim, in the examinations. (Because teachers don’t want to go the extra mile to come up with questions that truly test if someone has really understood a particular concept). This is dulling our children’s naturally inquisitive minds to question and explore. Rest assured, “Health Competition” amounts our children is excellent, but children must be taught how to succeed both as an individual and apply what they have studied in real world terms, as well as develop a high Emotional Quotient (EQ), that focuses on care and empathy for others around them. With the rapid growth of AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Robotic Process Automation gaining traction in the work place, children of tomorrow need to be empathetic and intelligent leaders of Teams. People orientated at strategic levels of business and community.
The student-teacher dynamic.
Or the lack of one: The teacher dictates. The students listen. Questioning the teacher’s methods is wrong. After all, they know better. “Don’t ask stupid questions.” Learn to keep quiet. Follow the herd mentality. We at SMARTT School definitely do not want to see our children grow up as “Good Sheep” Herd Followers!
All work and no play makes Jack an ideal student:
Children are born and blessed with the most powerful thing on this earth, “an imagination”. How dare any educator take this away from them. One of the most important development tools in any child’s life if you want a sane and capable adult is the ability to “Play”, to imagine and create. This is the most important critical thinking skill each child of the future must be equipped with if they are not to be lost in the system of the 4th Industrial Revolution.
Parents: Student suicides are a reality.
A disturbing one sure, but a reality nonetheless. Instead of recognizing that different children have different developmental needs aptitude and different timeframes in learning development, our society still tends treats everyone with a common yardstick. Kids who are not able to live up to the (exorbitant) expectations of their parents, and having no other support structure, often choose the devastating option of ending their lives. Children who are pushed at a too high gradient and not allowed the time to get a fundamental before being driven on to the next thing become hopeless and often disruptive. Every human being is unique. We need to let our children be who they are and move at the pace that works for them as an individual.