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Objectives and Rationale behind the Syllabus

The English Syllabus running in Maldives is supposed to provide a detailed knowledge of English in the schools. For that reasons, this report has been formulated to calculate the overall effectiveness of the syllabus upon the teacher, students as well as school. In addition, the report is such prepared that it should definitely contain all the details of the indicators and the assessment guidelines by which anyone can get a thorough understanding of the contents of the syllabus. Moreover, the report should also contain the advantages and disadvantages of the syllabus by which the teacher, as well as the school, should take efficient steps to enhance the effectiveness of the syllabus (Bigler, Hayes & Liben, 2014).

Basically, English is considered as the sole medium by which the teaching can be transferred in the primary as well as secondary schools in Maldives. The report, therefore, contains every possible fact by which the teacher can gain the basic idea of teaching. In addition, the students can develop their English. Therefore in return, this report will help those students who are willing to continue tertiary education. By going through this report the teacher as well as student will get an idea to enhance their communication and personal satisfaction (Daly, et al., 2015).

The reason behind this is Key stage 2 syllabus has provided the teachers an outcome based education. So basically it can be said that the syllabus is based upon the key learning area, i.e.., language and communication. For that reason, the rationale behind creating the syllabus is to enhance the ability of English use in Maldivian students which will result in the development science and technology (Davis, et al., 2014). Moreover, there is also another rationale behind is to make the students literate in English aiming towards the welfare and wellbeing of the society.

The Key stage 2 syllabus is prepared with an aim is to make the pupils available all the possible opportunities to the students of Maldives for the developments of English effectiveness within the students. This aim is carried out to make the promotion of positive attitudes towards learning the language of English along with enabling the students to make the use of English language for their communication as well as personal satisfaction. Moreover, the syllabus has the objectives of developing the skills for proper communication, various tools for thinking and reasoning, developing the competence and confidence for representing, writing, speaking, reading and viewing. Along with that the syllabus also has the objective to foster the positive attitudes within the individual as well as developing the appreciation value within the individual. For that reason the syllabus has been prepared in three strands, i.e.., strand 1 as speaking and listening, strand 2 as reading and viewing and strand 3 as for writing and representing (Drake, Land & Tyminski, 2014). Further, these strands are divided into sub-strands namely, communicative purpose, skills and strategies and language structures and features. Depending upon the requirements the outcomes and indicators are being decided for the syllabus. Out of these two, the outcomes are the particular statements that provide proper understandings, knowledge, and skills to the students.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Basically while considering the Maldivian education system it is prevailing with the roots of the traditional system of schooling that has its existence from since more than hundreds of years. The existence of the traditional schools was evident from the names called Madhrasa or Makthab and Edhuruge. These are the names of some traditional schools that are basically privately owned. In that context, these are operated by the maximum of island communities that are usually self-financing (Flowerdew, 2013). Out of these three schools, the Edhuruge School can be referred to be the gathering of school with children in a private home where they will know the reading of Quran along with reading and writing of Dhivehi. This language is the mother tongue of Maldives that has some rudimentary touch of mathematics in it. The Madhrasa School is again one of such schools that are far more ranging than the Edhuruge schools.

These schools in Maldives carry out their teachings having an aim and objective of the fulfilment of all the educational objectives. The fulfilment of these objectives shows the fulfilment of the high rate of literacy along with the preservation of the Maldivian culture and tradition. But with due course of time, there has been the emergence of globalization that incorporated the Western School and its teaching methods. Therefore the present education system laid down the foundation for the merge in between the traditional as well as the Western Schooling system (Flowerdew, 2013).

With the introduction of the Western-style education, there has been the introduction of English medium schools. These schools brought various improvements within the students in terms of their skills that will help them in taking part in the development of the country. These schools prepare the individuals to face the training in overseas for the development of the country. Thus with the beginning of the English medium school, there was the incorporation of the curriculum of various subjects for teaching. The English curriculum was one of them that have undergone various changes with time aiming towards the enhancement of the communication, skills, and language of the students.

The content of the Maldivian syllabus consists of the enhancement of communication, skills, and language. All these activities and contents are prepared to base upon the vision, principles as well as the key competencies by which the student can achieve a good learning of English (Karantzas, et al., 2013). Therefore the sufficiency, as well as efficiency of the Maldivian National Curriculum, can be studied from its key competencies. By following these students can get a good learning of the subject.

Indicators and Assessment Guidelines

The reason behind is the syllabus provides the scope to practicing Islam, understanding and managing self and living a healthy life. Along with that the syllabus also consists of the prospects of relation with people, making meaning, using the technology as well as media and the sustainable practices (Kovaleski, VanDerHeyden & Shapiro, 2013). The most effective due to which this National Curriculum is enough to teach a lesson to students because the students can think critically and creatively.

The formation of the content can be said to have the relevance to the National Curriculum because the process goes on by following the principle of providing the scope of learning Islam which can result in the preservation of Maldivian identity and culture. Moreover, the syllabus also works with the principle by which the students can the opportunity to explore about the human rights, democracy and justice of Maldivian government (Kovaleski, VanDerHeyden & Shapiro, 2013). In addition, the contents are formulated in such a manner that there will have the holistic development of the student along with their personal excellence that includes both social and intellectual development.

With the syllabus contents, the students can get prepared to face the challenges of life which ensure the high inclusivity and value development of all the students. For that reason, it can be said that the syllabus covers the main vision of the school by strengthening their faith by the use of reading materials. In that context, the curriculum involves the use of equipment that will enhance the skills. Further, the authentic learning experiences develop the confidence and competence of the students that adds to the development of the country.

Moreover, the assessment process also ensures the proper delivery of teaching to the students. The reason behind is the syllabus prepared involves the various methods that are used by the teachers to assess the long as well as the long-term needs of the students. In addition, the assessment procedure also ensures the abilities and continuous progress of the students (Oermann, 2013). Thus it can be said that the assessment has its successful implementation in the National Curriculum.

The Maldivian syllabus was facing the learning outcomes to be as modest both in the case of primary as well as secondary education. In that context, the quality of education has always been a major challenge. Thus the emergence of this English syllabus resulted in the increase of the mean score for English among the students.

Outcomes and Indicators for each Strand and Sub-strand

The universal access to the basic education, on the whole, made the syllabus useful through the rapid expansion of enrolment. Thus the syllabus can be said to more useful than useless. It is because the syllabus is highly concerned about the development of the skills, motivation as well as performances of the teachers. Secondly, the syllabus also works for the establishment of a particular framework for the school by showing the outcomes basing upon the system of regular national assessments (Oermann, 2013). On the flip side, the syllabus also has the dark side that says it has the English language faces the issue of adopted as a second language. If it becomes the second language then all the emphasis on the skill development will go in vain and the syllabus becomes useless.  

The proposed learning outcomes of this syllabus are supposed to have the inclusion of the indicators. These indicators are prepared to provide assistance to the teachers that how to make the students capable of the achieving all the learning outcomes. The basis of having these indicators is because these indicators help them in providing the definition of knowledge, attitudes, and skills.

These parameters are the resultant of indicators that are eventually demonstrated by the students. Moreover, these parameters can be further used as the evidence by which it can be judged that whether the student met the intent of learning outcome or not.

While going to the speaking and listening, reading and viewing and writing representing, it is seen that all these have their own specification in the syllabus. Such as the skills of speaking and listening are the most fundamental skills that are required for the development of the literacy within the students. In addition, it is the essential factor that is important for thinking and learning (Riecken & Boruch, 2013). The reason behind is the students get basic ideas as well as concepts by getting the proper understanding of their experience along with knowledge. This is enabled through proper speaking and listening. Similarly, reading and viewing are other weapons by which the communication can be done quite strongly and powerfully.

The students get benefitted from reading that helps in extending their knowledge through the increase in understanding that will lead to personal satisfaction. The reading and viewing of English help the students to develop proper interpretation out of the variety of texts. In relation to reading the viewing also makes the students active by the use of visual media like films, advertisements and much more (Riecken & Boruch, 2013). Moreover, it makes the students get sure about to acquire the information along with appreciating the ideas as well as experiences. Like the previous two processes, the writing and representing also provides the opportunity to the students to make sure about the expression of their clarified thoughts. The expression of the refined thoughts is carried out by doing video presentations, drama, mime, posters and much more.

  • Using of speaking and listening to make interaction with many other for many purposes becomes evident when the student shows the enhanced participation of shared experiences. Thereafter the student interacts with others to make the situation familiar within the school. In return, the students get the very best ideas to share their relevant ideas with the other people present. With this, the students get clear to provide informally and rehearsed spoken presentation by speaking variety of situations.
  • The outcome of reading fluently and demonstrate comprehension is fulfilled when the student gains the ability to explain some differences in between the information and imaginative texts. In addition, it identifies the main ideas stated in the text by comparing and contrasting various texts used. Making accurate as well as meaningful notes on any topic also comes under this outcome that further helps the student in offering reactions and opinions in relation to the supporting answers as well as explanations.
  • Further, the outcome of the use of ICT to make the inquiry, creation of text along with communication is fulfilled by the use of drawing and writing software to record the picture as well as the symbols. Later the use of simple software to combine personal writing with supportive images for the representation of ideas along with the use of media and electronic equipment helps the students to use ICT. The students also learn to combine the words along with images to convey proper meaning.
  • The communicative purpose in grade 5 brings comes with the outcomes of using speaking and listening to make interaction with others and listening and responding to a range of grade-appropriate texts that will demonstrate comprehension.
  • In addition, the syllabus of grade 5 also has the outcome of reading fluently and demonstrates the proper comprehension of grade with appropriate literary and information texts.
  • Further, the grade 5 involves the inclusion of creating a variety of informational texts along with representations. It also includes the creation of a clear, focused personal and imaginative writing as well as representations for various purposes.
  • Later the outcome of recognizing the structure and patterns of language through oral texts is fulfilled when the student gets able to make the demonstration of knowledge of compound words, syllabication, and root words. Along with that the student able to make proper identification and use of suffixes, prefixes, and the word endings.
  • The outcome of demonstration of the awareness of reflection of how to reflect upon own reading and viewing strategies is fulfilled when the students gained strengths in the role of readers and viewers. Along with that, the students gain the capability of self-monitoring along with self-discussion which further helps the student to set a personal goal (Van Eemeren & Henkemans, 2016).
  • Again the outcome of using the variety of strategies after writing and representing to improvise own work is fulfilled when the student checks upon writing against the criteria of class. In relation to that, it improvises the clarity as well as the focus of revising the writing that is based on the provided criteria. In addition, the student gets engaged in editing a piece of writing very independently.
  • The grade 5 involves the syllabus contains the demonstration of positive listening as well as speaking behaviour during communication along with the practicing the skills as well as strategies that can be used by the effective listeners.  
  • In this case, the outcome of recognizing the structures as well as patterns can be fulfilled when the students become capable of identifying the use of structural sequencing cues along with the recognition of obvious alliteration. In addition, the students also get capable of identifying the idiomatic expressions along with their meanings.
  • This outcome gets validated when the student clearly understands, identifies and reads the multi-syllabic words. In addition, the student can also recognize as well as read the words accurately by the use of various cues.
  • The most important outcome comes in this part by which the students get aware of the use of various features as well as conventions it happens when the student gets the detailed knowledge of using grammar properly along with the use of punctuation and capitalization. Further, the vocabulary, spelling, and presentation get cleared through the fulfilment of this outcome (Wang, et al., 2013).
  • The grade 5 syllabus comprises of the outcomes of using the features of oral language for the conveyance as well as the derivation of the various interactive situations. In addition, the syllabus provides the development of a proper understanding of the structures as well as the patterns of languages present within the oral texts. 

The Traditional Education System in Maldives

Teacher: One of the advantages of the syllabus is that the syllabus also helps to develop the skills and quality of education within the teachers. It also helps to make them professionally educated as well as competent. They get opened to various new techniques to provide class demonstrations. he teacher motivation and performance is enhanced.

Student: The syllabus helps to excite the students in getting opened to various opportunities for discussion. The student can be able to develop its communication, skills, and language. They can be able to gain confidence and can develop the pattern of critical thinking as well as reasoning. There will be the development of positive attitudes within the students along with the enhancement of emotional, imaginative and aesthetical development within the student.

School: School will be better place if they have the best syllabus. The school gets its name from the development of its students as well as teachers. The development of the schools can be measured through various team projects, reflective papers, research report and oral presentations. The incorporation of the syllabus makes the school to be known and recognized by the most of the universities. It strengthens the national consciousness for the preservation of national cultural heritage along with the values and traditions (Zangori, Forbes & Biggers, 2013).

Teacher: The disadvantages of syllabus for a teacher is that the syllabus makes the teacher a technocrat who gets less amount if technical freedom and gets embedded in pressure. The teacher only has a single purpose to concentrate upon the fulfilment of goals or objectives of the syllabus. In that process, the teachers cannot enjoy their teaching moments and eventually lose their moments.

Student: The student not only gets developed through the syllabus but it also needs its internal aim for achievement. Here the syllabus fails to cope with the student. It also makes the environment more competitive in individual basis by which the student gets pressurized. The objectives, as well as standards, are already set so the students also get scared by seeing all the processes and activities at a time.

School: The school gets imposed with religion if it will be practicing Islam in any condition. Some learning outcomes are based upon the values that exclude the subject orientation. Sometimes the school focus upon the social needs more than that of the individual.

Conclusion

The Maldives is the place of islands that is widely dispersed and is going on with carrying out the systematic research of the curriculum development. In that case, there has been a regular feedback from the schools regarding the development of the syllabus. Thus this report included the details of the syllabus along with its objectives and key competencies. In addition, is comprised of the indicators and the assessment guidelines that will prove the effectiveness of the Maldivian syllabus as per its National Curriculum Framework.

The Emergence of English Medium Schools

References

Bigler, R. S., Hayes, A. R., & Liben, L. S. (2014). Chapter seven-analysis and evaluation of the rationales for single-sex schooling. Advances in child development and behavior, 47, 225-260.

Daly, E. J., Neugebauer, S., Chafouleas, S. M., & Skinner, C. H. (2015). Interventions for reading problems: Designing and evaluating effective strategies. Guilford Publications.

Davis, E., Palincsar, A. S., Arias, A. M., Bismack, A. S., Marulis, L., & Iwashyna, S. (2014). Designing educative curriculum materials: A theoretically and empirically driven process. Harvard Educational Review, 84(1), 24-52.

Drake, C., Land, T. J., & Tyminski, A. M. (2014). Using educative curriculum materials to support the development of prospective teachers’ knowledge. Educational Researcher, 43(3), 154-162.

Flowerdew, L. (2013). Needs analysis and curriculum development in ESP. The handbook of English for specific purposes, 325-346.

Forbes, C. T. (2013). Curriculum-dependent and curriculum-independent factors in preservice elementary teachers’ adaptation of science curriculum materials for inquiry-based science. Journal of Science Teacher Education, 24(1), 179-197.

Karantzas, G. C., Avery, M. R., Macfarlane, S., Mussap, A., Tooley, G., Hazelwood, Z., & Fitness, J. (2013). Enhancing critical analysis and problem?solving skills in undergraduate psychology: An evaluation of a collaborative learning and problem?based learning approach. Australian Journal of Psychology, 65(1), 38-45.

Kovaleski, J. F., VanDerHeyden, A. M., & Shapiro, E. S. (2013). The RTI approach to evaluating learning disabilities. Guilford Publications.

McElhaney, K. W., Chang, H. Y., Chiu, J. L., & Linn, M. C. (2015). Evidence for effective uses of dynamic visualisations in science curriculum materials. Studies in Science Education, 51(1), 49-85.

Oermann, M. H. (2013). Teaching in nursing and role of the educator: The complete guide to best practice in teaching, evaluation and curriculum development. Springer Publishing Company.

Priestley, M., & Sinnema, C. (2014). Downgraded curriculum? An analysis of knowledge in new curricula in Scotland and New Zealand. Curriculum Journal, 25(1), 50-75.

Riecken, H. W., & Boruch, R. F. (Eds.). (2013). Social Experimentation: a Method for Planning and Evaluating Social Intervention. Elsevier.

Skager, R., & Dave, R. H. (Eds.). (2014). Curriculum evaluation for lifelong education: developing criteria and procedures for the evaluation of school curricula in the perspective of lifelong education: a multinational study (Vol. 2). Elsevier.

Van Eemeren, F. H., & Henkemans, A. F. S. (2016). Argumentation: Analysis and Evaluation. Routledge.

Wang, C., Polly, D., Lehew, A., Pugalee, D., Lambert, R., & Martin, C. S. (2013). Supporting teachers' enactment of elementary school student-centered mathematics pedagogies: The evaluation of a curriculum-focused professional development program. New Waves, 16(1), 76.

Zangori, L., Forbes, C. T., & Biggers, M. (2013). Fostering student sense making in elementary science learning environments: Elementary teachers' use of science curriculum materials to promote explanation construction. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 50(8), 989-1017.

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