Why We Need To Adopt Informal Education Practices In The Management Of Formal Education Systems

Kenya is one of the African Countries with the highest rate of unemployment despite the fact that literacy levels have gone up. Most high school graduates who are also the majority of the job seekers lack the basic skills which the job market requires.

Kenya’s education system today is inherited from the British Colonial Administration. The education system had been established by the colonialists to serve their own purpose – that of providing clerks and interpreters of the Bible. After independence the need for education changed as self-governance meant need for specialized manpower. This has seen Kenya change its education system from 8:4:2:3 to 7:4:2:3 and finally to 8:4:4 in an attempt to cater for the country’s needs. In all these changes, informal educational practices were not given much attention as they were associated with the Africans and African civilization which was deemed inferior.

The main differences between informal education and formal education is that whereas formal education is geared to impersonal goals of knowledge acquisition, informal education is a process of enabling the individual understand the societal goals and mutual relationship. Informal education practices are yet to be meaningfully integrated in the management of formal education. This is because majority of formal and informal trainers and trainees disagree to their use, in the management of formal education.

Learning theories and models can be blended to accommodate formal and informal practices in management of education and in the process, develop an individual who has requisite competencies at problem-solving. Competencies in this context refers to skills, attitudes, knowledge and abilities of people such competencies can only be said to be relevant when they help people to observe desired values. Such competencies are critical if any society is to develop and remain relevant in a rapidly growing global society.

Although professional educators are now much more involved than before in policy making, it remains true that the educational theory and practice are world’s part. This is evident in our graduates who cannot be employed anywhere due to their lack of competencies and have to undergo some post qualification in-service course. Students who are products of Kenya’s formal education are not able to develop and use original inventive, innovative and entrepreneurial competencies. It therefore shows that most of the students trained through the Kenya’s formal education graduate when they are incapable of inventing, creating and sustaining productive jobs.

The use of problem-solving practices is therefore necessary to encourage the production of innovative, inventive and entrepreneurial graduates in Kenya’s formal education. Problem-solving practices should be adopted to complement formal education in Kenya at all levels. They can be included while designing the subsequently needed curriculum.

Why We Need To Adopt Informal Education Practices In The Management Of Formal Education Systems

Kenya is one of the African Countries with the highest rate of unemployment despite the fact that literacy levels have gone up. Most high school graduates who are also the majority of the job seekers lack the basic skills which the job market requires.

Kenya’s education system today is inherited from the British Colonial Administration. The education system had been established by the colonialists to serve their own purpose – that of providing clerks and interpreters of the Bible. After independence the need for education changed as self-governance meant need for specialized manpower. This has seen Kenya change its education system from 8:4:2:3 to 7:4:2:3 and finally to 8:4:4 in an attempt to cater for the country’s needs. In all these changes, informal educational practices were not given much attention as they were associated with the Africans and African civilization which was deemed inferior.

The main differences between informal education and formal education is that whereas formal education is geared to impersonal goals of knowledge acquisition, informal education is a process of enabling the individual understand the societal goals and mutual relationship. Informal education practices are yet to be meaningfully integrated in the management of formal education. This is because majority of formal and informal trainers and trainees disagree to their use, in the management of formal education.

Learning theories and models can be blended to accommodate formal and informal practices in management of education and in the process, develop an individual who has requisite competencies at problem-solving. Competencies in this context refers to skills, attitudes, knowledge and abilities of people such competencies can only be said to be relevant when they help people to observe desired values. Such competencies are critical if any society is to develop and remain relevant in a rapidly growing global society.

Although professional educators are now much more involved than before in policy making, it remains true that the educational theory and practice are world’s part. This is evident in our graduates who cannot be employed anywhere due to their lack of competencies and have to undergo some post qualification in-service course. Students who are products of Kenya’s formal education are not able to develop and use original inventive, innovative and entrepreneurial competencies. It therefore shows that most of the students trained through the Kenya’s formal education graduate when they are incapable of inventing, creating and sustaining productive jobs.

The use of problem-solving practices is therefore necessary to encourage the production of innovative, inventive and entrepreneurial graduates in Kenya’s formal education. Problem-solving practices should be adopted to complement formal education in Kenya at all levels. They can be included while designing the subsequently needed curriculum.

What is Shaping Future Generations? Certainly It’s Not Formal Education

Tonight I was watching the latest episode of Fringe, “The road not taken”. In one of the scenes, Walter is explaining to Olivia why she’s been having visions. He describes our perception of time as a line, while in reality at every moment our reality unfolds into an infinite number of these lines. Every decision that can be taken creates an alternate reality, as real as ours.

What this triggered in me was something far from Fringe’s plot. It made me think about how we see the world the way we see it. Why we consider what’s acceptable or not. What makes us think as Gen X or Gen Y; and ultimately, what makes us change as a society. How did I get here, you may be asking yourself. Well, this is how…

When Walter was giving his explanation to Olivia, he wasn’t just explaining that. It was Pop Culture speaking about Quantum Physics (multiple histories of a particle), about a different paradigm. In high school, I remember learning Newton’s 1+1=2 physics. The “simple” and predictable one. Quite ancient compared to “the 1+1= a lot of things and some other we can’t answer” physics of nowadays.

Formal education isn’t the way to evolve a society. To prepare its members for change. Quite the opposite. It ensures (and enforces) that the traits of the current generation are transmitted to the following.

Society tends to adopt this “manual to life”. It saves us the job of thinking about things. If someone gives us the answers, why waste energy in double checking them? Besides, it’s the Truth.

Those with a critical attitude will challenge this guide and set sail to discover the other truths.

So, what drives social change then?

I believe that it’s not just one factor. It is a constellation of them. Only one would not be enough to foster massive cultural change. It needs to be supported by other factors to make the meme/chunk of knowledge get traction and thrive. Trying to analyze these factors one by one would certainly require more than one post. Or more than a dozen (I should write a book). That’s why I’ll focus in one. The one that drove me to write this post. Pop culture.

It plays an important role and often underestimated role. Pop culture prepares society for what’s coming, or for what’s already here and we are not seeing. I bet that today, our schools are not teaching the the theory of Relativity, nanotechnology or quantum physics… hell no, we are still debating if evolution is a fact or a conspiracy to deviate us from the Truth. But nowadays people are getting, through almost subliminal channels, bits of information that prepares them for the moment to switch paradigms. Pop culture is creating the foundations to support that knowledge. And little by little is preparing us to view the world through a different screen.

For instance, if tomorrow on CNN you read that a group of scientists have discovered the way to travel through time, I don’t think you would jump from your chair freaking out about the crazy stuff that people discover or create. You have been prepared, for when the moment comes, to digest those news faster. If you are a hard core sci-fi fan, unless a flying saucer abducts you and gives you a thrill ride through the galaxy, you shouldn’t be shocked by groundbreaking or “look-like-magic” discoveries. Warp speed? That’s old!

I stated that there wasn’t just one factor. If I had to name a few ones quickly I’d say that any communication channel that is not at the service of the status-quo can function as a change-driver. It’s always by the clash of the old vs. the new that advancement is possible. One can’t exist without the other. There is no change if there is nothing to change.

Fernando Tarnogol is an Argentinean psychologist, currently working as Program Coordinator at the Devereux Foundation in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

He has studied Psychology at the University of Buenos Aires and Human Resources Management at UADE (Argentinean University of the Enterprise). His professional experience includes work in HR for HSBC Bank Argentina and in two mental health facilities performing psychological evaluations and other clinical work.

Private Piano Lessons – The Benefits of a Formal Education

If you think the only way to receive private piano lessons is to hire an in home tutor or travel across town once per week, which requires a lot of dedication and expense, there are other ways of receiving a formal education in music.

Online Lessons

Yes, private piano lessons are available online for a fraction of the cost. Some people may not consider this as formal training, but think again. Many Colleges and Universities across the country offer online courses to students who are unable to attend physically due to location or other reasons.

Taking music courses online is becoming just as popular. You have all the comforts of home and your lesson plans are right at your finger tips. No commute. Study at your convenience, whenever you want. There is the option to print your lessons as well and take them with you.

Choose your Instructor

In most cases, when you choose private piano lessons online, you have the option of choosing your instructor according to what you desire to learn. If you want to learn blues music, choose a teacher who specializes in this area.

You can make your learning experience a personal one with this diverse way of education. There are video tutorials available, online forums to take part in and seminars as well. Continuing education has never been easier.

Studies have shown that when you are in comfortable surroundings the learning experience is enhanced. You are relaxed and able to concentrate. No pressures. No need to worry about your appearance or performing in front of people right away.

As a self-taught pianist, I know the value of formal training as well. There is only so much you can teach yourself. Music theory requires knowledge and skill, not just playing it by ear and memorizing songs note for note. Natural ability is a blessing, but combining this with private piano lessons will bring your level of expertise to its fullest.

Formal training will challenge you to greater heights. There is so much more to music than meets the ear, so to speak. How many different variations are there on one basic scale, for instance. At least sixteen. If this surprises you, then you now know what you are missing by not getting formal training.

Private piano lessons will also teach you discipline. It takes hard work and dedication to become the best you can be in any area. After all, talent is ninety percent hard work. One can’t rely on natural ability alone to rise above mediocrity.

How far do wish to take your talent? This will be the deciding factor of which type of lessons will work best for you. If you can afford a private instructor at some point, it is definitely a more personal way to learn.

Formal Education and Its Significance in Getting Jobs

Formal education is an important part of one’s life. It can take anywhere between 13 to 18 years in one’s life. In fact, the number of years can be more than 18 in some cases. It normally includes primary school education, secondary school education, some may opt to do diploma courses, some may go for bachelor courses and there are many others who would even go for masters and doctorate. Formal education has become very expensive nowadays. Most banks and financial institutions offer education loans to students who can’t afford to pay for higher education. Even though the interest rates are high, most of them accept the loan realizing that formal education is a crucial aspect of one’s life. Believe it or not, debt from student loans has crossed a trillion in USA alone.

One might ask why would someone borrow heavy money in the form of student loans and pursue higher education? What would he get out of it? What is the future? Well, the answer is jobs. Employment after education is the only thing that drives these students to take loans from banks and enroll themselves in prestigious colleges to pursue higher education. Most of them would have big dreams as to what kind of jobs they want after education, both in terms of salary and the job profile.

Most people would want to study in the best colleges available. The reason being not just good facilities provided by the colleges. The most important reason is the job placement opportunities one would get from prestigious educational institutions. Hence, students don’t hesitate to shell out big money to join prestigious educational institutions since the normal institutions don’t attract well known companies for campus job placements. Well known companies offer high salary and interesting jobs. People are always looking to get placed in high profile multi-national companies thinking that only those companies offer the best career growth opportunities apart from good salary. Even though it is true to some extent, I have seen many people joining low profile companies and would still end up learning a lot from them. With small companies, the employee strength would often be less and you may end up with a lot of responsibilities. In hindsight, that can be advantageous for your career.

There are a lot of industry sectors where you can obtain jobs. Some of them include the informational technology industry, manufacturing industry, healthcare industry, hospitality industry, travel industry, agriculture and the list goes on.

Wanted.com is a useful search engine for jobs. The website offers whatever help wanted by job seekers in their search for good jobs.