Does the South African educational system suck or is it just me?
By Lethole Londolani Theophilus, 21, Free State
The fact is I really do not like the South African educational system, or I am just angry because I suck at using the information and the tools it gives me. But one way or the other, I am either 100% wrong, or 100% right but I will let you decide after you are done reading my experience and my thoughts on our educational system.
Ever since primary school days (when I noted that school is what I need to focus on now), I have always sucked and it was not because I didn’t want to learn but it’s because I sucked or I was really dumb. I went to a private school in Venda and there were not many in class (30 students from grade 4 to grade 7) and every term I was always between position 27 and 30 academically but when I was in grade 7, I decided to sit with the academically smart kids that were always in the top ten (by the way, those kids were all girls and only one guy).
The first two terms of that year I sat with them and I learnt that it was not about learning and understanding what you have been taught. The trick was to memorise the important things and do all the previous test papers because teachers have no new questions or would test us on what has been asked before, so they will recycle all the previous question papers. In the third term of that year, using the top ten academically smart kids’ method I got position 18 out of 30 in my grade. Trust me, I felt like Jimmy neutron the day I got the report card.
Yes, my family was proud that I have improved and I am finally performing well but if you noticed, my new method of studying was never based on me getting to know or understand anything but just to know that 2 + 2 = 4 and not considering why the answer was 4.
At this point, I have shown you one problem that I have with the South African educational system and if you did not understand it, I will explain it to you. From a small age or from primary school, students are not taught to think, understand, reason nor given a chance to show their creativity but forced with the fact that they have to note the important parts that the teachers will test them on and they need to use old question papers because, like every game you play, the stages are the same and you just need to know how to beat the boss level and that is it.
Now ending this post, do you think I suck at learning? Am I dumb? Or is the South African educational system just useless? Well, tell me what you think and give me the reasons. The biggest reason for this post is to protest a reform change of our South African educational system and hopefully the whole world, someday.
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