Category: Teach Better

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Forward-thinking Dubai schools choose innovation over exams

Traditional teaching methods could be setting young learners up for ‘failure’ – as UAE educators vow to help children develop skills needed for the 21st century.

Teachers and education chiefs are ready to embrace change in the current exam system following the release of the UAE’s human development report this week, which called for a “flexible environment in curricula teaching” and “non-compliance with exams or textbooks.”

The report, compiled by the UAE University Center of Public Policy and leadership in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme, also urged those shaping young minds to encourage ‘creation and innovation.”

It is a challenge that educators in the UAE are relishing.

Brendan Law, vice president, British Cluster Lead at Gems Education, said: “There is every opportunity to review the exam system as it currently stands. The exam system is self-perpetuating a knowledge-based curriculum.

“Using purely traditional methodologies of assessing children sets them up for failures in many cases because we are essentially not testing their knowledge or their skills, we are testing the children who are able to answer exam papers most effectively.

“The traditional system of the exam doesn’t necessarily give the best picture of a child’s capabilities in terms of their cognitive ability and it’s not giving any indication of their emotional intelligence or their soft skills such as collaboration skills and teamwork,” he said.

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