Education system in malaysia

In Malaysia, there are many education systems that had been used such as Primary School Old Curriculum (KLSR), Primary School Integrated Curriculum (KBSR) and Primary School Standard Curriculum (KSSR). KBSR is one of the education policy that had brings many achievement and successful in education system. In addition, to improve current education system, KBSR makes few changes in two aspects which are curriculum and school culture. In each category, there are its own aim and target to develop.

In order to develop children as learners through KBSR, teachers must grounded into four principles which are integrated approach, holistic development of individual, one education for all and life-long learning. The aim of KBSR want to provide primary school pupils with language and arithmetic skills that enable them to communicate and solve problem in daily life for their future. Furthermore, the changes of KLSR to KBSR are not only in curriculum but also in school environment. KBSR was implemented for trial in 1982 and a year after that which is 1983 it is fully implement in all primary schools.

First of all, teachers or educators must know the definition of twenty-first (21st) learners because all of them will face students from that live in 21st century or known as generation Y and Z. According to Barnett (2010) “ Twenty-first-century learning means that students master content while producing, synthesizing, and evaluating information from a wide variety of subjects and sources with an understanding of and respect for diverse cultures. Students demonstrate the three R’s, but also the three C’s: creativity, communication, and collaboration.

Then they must analyze and know each student’s potential. When educators know their students potential and characteristics it is easy for them to using various teaching skills in each class they teach. Based on the definition above, the 21st learning contains of three R’s and four C’s which are reading, writing, arithmetic, creativity and innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, communication and collaboration. All of the elements above are supported by learner attitude and motivation to learn, thoughtful engagement, effective use of technology also life and career skills.

Besides that, to realize this plan teachers also need to nurture or implant important element based on National Philosophy of Education (NPE) which are cognitive, psychomotor and affective domain with balance and harmonious. In addition, to make this plan successful, someone who are capable, knowledgeable and experiences in teaching profession should hold this responsible. Hence, the products of this plan should be blend with skills, knowledge and values to succeed in work and life for their nation and future.

As we know, children who live in 21st century are different from other century because they had been exposed to high technologies since they were born. Besides that, all of them are from generation Y and Z and they need adult to guide and assist their while they are growing up. As a teacher who is teaching 21st century children, they need to know each characteristics of generation Y and Z. Generally children from generation Y are tech savvy, achievement-oriented, team-oriented and attention seekers meanwhile for generation Z are children tend to tech savvy, social, multitasking and speedy.

Generation Y is consists of people who are relying on technology or tech savvy to do complete their jobs. All of them are grew up with technology such as mobile phones, laptops and prefer to communicate through internet compare to face to face. Meanwhile achievement-oriented means generation Y have high confident level and wants meaningful works also like to seek out new challenges. Next is team-oriented which is they like to work in group and usually they are loyal and committed while doing the jobs.

Lastly for generation Y is attention seekers which mean they really need someone who can guide and be their mentor to develop their young careers. For generation Z children also addict on technology. Without mobile phones and all gadgets they cannot life. Compare to generation Y they are more expert and advance in term of technology. Then, all of them are like to social in social websites like Face book and Twitter. In addition they are grown up with this facility but the good side about it is they are more creative and collaborative. Third characteristic is all the children are multitasking.

They can do many works in one period for example they will text, eat and talk together but actually they lose their ability to focus while doing works. Lastly, speedy which means all information that generation Z received must be in short, precise and clear information because it is easy for them to understand. According to Daniel (2010) “ I gear my curriculum so students can experience success as quickly as possible. ” They are multitasking so that they do not need much time to spend in each works. Teachers need to prepare their self to teach children from 21st century because they will face big challenges from the children.

Those children are not only advance in technology but sometimes are more knowledgeable than adults. As we know, in Malaysia education had grounded on NPE and current education system such as KBSR. In KBSR there are principles that had been stated above and teachers need to be creative to apply those principles in order to develop children as learners. Moreover, they can use other strategies such as 21st century learning to teach those children by knowing their characteristics. They need to know the characteristics of 21st learners.

There are nine characteristics which are very essential but these are only some of the list such as learner-centered, adaptable, personalized, interdependent, and data-rich. There are four principles in KBSR and teachers need to use all the principles to develop children as learners. First principle is integrated approach where knowledge, skills and values are combined then integrate to physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual. Through this concept, there are four ways for teachers to implant all the elements in children to be learners which are skills cohesion, infusion, integration and element across the curriculum.

Skills cohesion divides into two which are in one subject and between subject that are based on four main skills speaking, listening, reading and writing. Teacher can use or focus on two skills in one time while learning process such as listening and speaking in Music or English class. Children will enjoy doing this activity. Next is infusion that means all knowledge that teacher teach in school are related to each subject. For example to nurture good moral values in students itself, teacher will teach them moral subject or Islamic education so that all of them can apply it while doing work in group or in daily life.

Furthermore, integration is combination between two elements consist of co-curriculum and curriculum, knowledge and practice also past experiences and new experiences. All these integration actually want to emphasize pupil’s basic skills. Lastly, element across the curriculum which consists of language, environments, science and thinking skills which enable teacher to teach pupil based on syllabus and add more general knowledge in children to attract their attention also more focus in class.

Secondly, holistic development is implementation of physical, emotional, spiritual and intellectual in individuals through all subjects taught in school. Children grow up with knowledge and potentials with teachers and parents support. In school, teacher is a person who is responsible to give and hone pupil’s potential. Each potential is related to other elements such as skills, knowledge and values. Thus, all these elements can produce a good quality in each individual. Another principle is, life-long learning means continuously learning process and not restricted by time.

Actually this principle are supported by school or teacher’s role by deliver knowledge and skills also keep encourage pupils to learning for future. Other than that, teacher can nurture pupils to love of knowledge so that children can adapt their self to be learners in their life. Hence in this principle, children really need guide and help from teachers. One education for all emphasize that all pupils at the same school level received the same curriculum and only the medium of instruction difference. Under this principle, there are three areas which are communication, man and His environment and individual self-development.

For this principle each area have it own components consists of several subject. Teachers teach these subjects according to student level or year in school. Children will keep learning by following the sequences and syllabus that had been provided by Ministry of Education. In each area it is divided into six components, for example for communication it contains basic skills that are focuses on 3R. In this area, teachers teach about language and indirectly enhance pupil’s communication skills by practicing in their daily life.

On the other hand, man and His environment contains spiritually, values and attitudes components that pupils will get by learning mathematics, science, moral education also Islamic education. All these subjects can make pupils more knowledgeable, noble, skillful with dynamic, and can produce pupils who are responsible and have good moral values. The fourth area, is about individual self development that teacher want to implant living skills, arts and health education components. Through this area, pupils learn about living skills such as entrepreneurship, technology-based knowledge and work management.

Meanwhile, in arts and music pupils learn about drawing, colors, and shaping also student learn how to play with musical instruments under teacher guidance by following step by step. This subject can enhance pupil’s talents, and produce pupils who are creative, innovative and have aesthetic value. Both physical health and co-curriculum subject are aims to provide pupils who practice healthy lifestyle with high knowledge in health. Besides that, from co-curriculum, school can produce pupil with high discipline, self- confident and enthusiastic.

Thus, all principle in KBSR gives fully advantages for children to be learners which they learn to adapt under the guidance from teachers and parents. Actually, all those KBSR principles are related with old theories such as social learning theory, cognitive theory and humanistic approach. All these theories are guidance for teachers to teach or implant children with elements that children need to be learners. For this reason, we can go through information about social learning theory by Albert Bandura which he is stated that “ behavior is learned from the environment through the process of observational learning” (Bandura 1977).

To simplify, this theory is emphasized that children learn through observation and imitate by watching other people (model) do. Behavior, environmental factor and personal factor include cognitive, affective and biological event are three main factor that affect children to be learners in future. In education, this theory shown that teacher is the model while children in the learning process. Based on this theory, it involved four steps in this learning theory such as attention, retention, reproduction and motivation. Attention and retention are the first two steps that are very important.

In this process children should be focus and then try to remember what they get before. If this topic can attract children attention it is easy for them to remember the information. The next two steps are reproduction and motivation. Reproduction is the product from attention and retention and it is relying on student cognitive ability. Motivation means that children get more from the action of reinforcement by imitating the model’s behaviour. For example, in classroom children see their friends come early than others, so they motivated to come early in each day.

Indeed this theory also, focuses on children self confident. Cognitive theory is also related with KBSR principles because it is emphasize about activities like thinking, deciding and remembering can shape children behavior and attitudes. This theory indirectly related with holistic development which focuses on children development in each aspect which are emotional, physical, intellect, spiritual and balance with other potential. Other than that, to make children as learner teacher need to use various kind of teaching method.

For example, in this theory it is suggested that, teacher use expository teaching, meaningful-learning and dual coding. Expository teaching is teacher provide tools while learning so the process for information encoding, storage and retrieval are easy. Besides, for meaningful learning is teacher need to use old information first, and then give them new information but still connected. The uses of text, picture or ICT can grab student’s attention because it is other method to remember and encoding the information. Other theory that helps children to be learners is humanist.

According to Ornstein (1998) “ Humanistic is the total person- the cognitive, the affective, and even the spiritual self- who is involved in gaining knowledge and working toward wisdom. The students’ self-concept and self-esteem are essential factors in this process”. By stated the definition it is clearly shown about children development to be learners. In fact, in this theory emphasize about children learns because they are inwardly driven, to achieve good achievement. This theory is totally about creating the need within the children or implant children with self-motivation.

Besides, in education perspective usually humanist’s teachers will focus on children developing self esteem to make them feel better and have high self-efficacy. Humanist theory use child-centered method which means children are responsible for their education and future. There are common values that emphasize in education for this theory which are affect, self, communication and personal values. Affect is focuses on feeling and thinking meanwhile self concept is the process of implementation of positive and negative values in children life. While communication occur, it must have positive and honest in each words people use.

Lastly, children must have good personal values for their development so that they can know, express and actualize themselves. Thus, humanist theory is theory that preparing child for their future life. In the globalization era, all teachers need to be creative, innovative and skillful. Mostly, children who live in 21st century are smart children and all of them are grown up with technologies. Based on the research before, Howard Gardner had found seven distinct form of intelligence consists of linguistic, musical, logical-mathematical, spatial, body-kinesthetic, intrapersonal (meta-cognition) and interpersonal social skills).

According to Gardner (1991) “ students possess different kinds of minds and therefore learn, remember, perform, and understand in different ways. ” Teachers or parents can detect types of children’s intelligence and encouraged them to use their preferred intelligence in learning. Their intelligence can improve by examination or assessment to know their intelligence level. In order to visualize multiple intelligence theory, all educators may use various learning style consists of visual, auditory and kinesthetic learning style (VAK).

The function of learning style is to develop pedagogies that allow children to be more effective and efficient learners. Before teach teachers need to check their method must be simple, easy to implement in wide variety of context or in different ages and keep practicing using this method to make sure their effectiveness towards learners. Visual learning style is learning by seeing teacher body languages or facial expression by the help of image. They tend to take detailed note and sit in front in the classroom. Furthermore, auditory learner is learns through verbal lessons, discussion or reading text loudly.

In addition, while study, they like to make musical jingles and create mnemonics which can make them easy to memorize. Meanwhile, kinesthetic learners are comfortable learn through hands-on approach and actively exploring world around them. Usually pupils like them will take frequently break because they cannot sit still for long periods and they will learn music while they study to make them active and energetic while study. Hence, teachers play an important role while to make all students in classroom get the same input while teaching and learning process occur.