As the countdown begins towards the 21 day national lockdown, many parents may find themselves in uncharted waters. As unique measures will be enforced by the police, with the support of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) which would be aimed at limiting movement as far as possible, to prevent the spread of the pandemic Covid-19. Resulting in government closing all learning institutions and leaving parents to be the sole educator for the next three weeks.
Head of the Department of Curriculum Studies, Professor Michael le Cordeur said this is a difficult time for everyone, especially the education fraternity.
“This is a crisis that nobody expected, but now that we are faced with it we have to do the best we can under the circumstances,” stated le Cordeur.
Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams confirmed that her industry has joined in partnership with the Department of Basic Education and they would broadcast virtual classroom teaching for children sitting at home.
le Cordeur said the world finds itself living in a time of technological advances and this can be used to its advantage.
“There are many online platforms available that you can use, all you need to do is log onto the world wide web, type what you’re looking for in a search engine and there is enough courses online to keep both parent and child busy,” encouraged le Cordeur.
However, le Cordeur mentioned that this is an opportune time to revert back to the days before technology. Face-face, hands-on learning would create an even stronger bond between parents and child and this
“If we are brutally honest with each other we must admit to ourselves that for the last decade parents and learners have grown apart. We are so busy, life is so busy. We don’t have time to talk or to sit down as a family and discuss things,” stated le Cordeur.
le Cordeur encouraged parents to do the tasks that they had put off for the past few years with the excuse of not having enough time.
“Let us all make use of this time,”
le Cordeur said the most important thing is to ensure that children keep their routine.
“The first thing that I would want to advise to parents is to keep to the routine of the child, especially those who are in foundation phase” urged le Cordeur.
He stated learners are used to a routine and that they understand that work comes before play, so keep that momentum going with children.
“The first thing you must do is get the children out of their pajamas in the morning,” advised le Cordeur.
le Cordeur said the advice might sound meek but it creates a shift in the mind of children. Children will begin to understand that secular education will continue, the only difference is the venue.
“Rediscover the value of reading, rediscover the value of books,” said le Cordeur.