Curriculum Conference, September 2019.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
COMMUNIQUÉ OF THE CURRICULUM CONFERENCE HELD ON SATURDAY 28TH SEPTEMBER 2019.
The school curriculum conference for the first term of 2019/2020 was held on Saturday 28th September 2019 in the school premises and it was graced by significant number of parents and staff of the school. Matters discussed at the conference include;
1.0 OUTLINE OF ZYTOON CURRICULUM AND DAILY ACTIVITIES
The Proprietress welcomed the parents to the event, defined the school vision and mission, explained the school core values, analyzed the school curriculum and enumerated the school special goals for the session.
The lessons taught pupils in the school as stated at the conference is a blend of Montessori, Cambridge, Nigerian and Islamic Curriculum, while the school’s core curriculum values are mental math and logical reasoning, creativity and collaboration, legibility and comprehensibility, confidence and public speaking, faith and conviction.
The school vision is to be a reference citadel where young children are given the right foundation to excel in this life and the hereafter, while its mission is to breed brilliant stars that are hybrids of piety and success, shaped through an enduring process of dedication, doggedness and care.
The school special curricular/extra-curricular target for the 2019/2020 session are:
- Enhancing the School Montessori activities to foster independence, confidence, social responsibility and spiritual awareness of our jewels;
- Creating an opportunity for our jewels to appreciate our cultural values, practices, and heritage;
- Expanding the scope of our Cambridge Curriculum to cover Science and Mathematics for effective activity based learning.
- Intensify effort on our STEM activities to further develop our pupils’ critical thinking, collaboration, creativity and problem solving skills;
- Engaging our jewels in competition to help develop their confidence, resilience, spirit of sportsmanship and ability to take healthy risks and deal with stress; and
- Avail our jewels the opportunities to take on responsibilities to help improve their leadership skills.
2.0 PRINCIPLE OF MONTESSORI EDUCATION
The principle of Montessori education as explained by Mrs Sanni is a method of teaching that is based on self-directed activity, hands-on learning and collaborative play. Children in a Montessori classroom make creative choices of their learning and the materials to work with, a practice certified to have an immense impact on their personal, emotional and social development. The need to harness the full benefit of Montessori for our jewels has prompted the school to invest heavily in setting up Montessori centers in all our pre-school classrooms. With this development, it will encourage pupils to work independently and learn at their own pace with the Montessori materials for the period spent in school. They will be groomed to become part of a caring community where each child is valued as a unique individual.
We expect this effort to develop the skills that will foster orderliness, coordination, concentration, and independence in our pupils, while they are also supported to become a lifelong active seekers of knowledge.
3.0 WHY GO EXTRA ON CAMBRIDGE?
Asides that the Cambridge is an offshoot of the British Curriculum, which is one root of our course of study, we have come to realized that the Cambridge Curriculum has a global perspective that makes it suitable for international use and expose our pupils to international facts and knowledge.
The differentiated learning approach of the Cambridge Curriculum, where the need of all classes of learners (i.e. high flyers, average learners and up comers) are put into consideration in the preparation and delivering of lessons is another factor that endears it to us.
We are convinced that expanding the scope of our Cambridge Curriculum beyond literacy, to cover numeracy and science will prepare our pupils for life. It will also help them develop an informed curiosity and a lasting passion for knowledge. With this, the skills developed in their early years through the Montessori process can be consolidated and strengthened.
4.0 PRACTICAL LIFE FOR PRIMARY PUPILS
The management has equally taken a bold step to integrate practical life exercises to the primary section’s lesson. The aim of this is to;
- Ensure that every child is consciously groomed to become a model worth emulating.
- Secure continuity on practical life exercises that had been learnt in the in pre-school.
- Blend the Montessori PLE teachings with Islamic Adhab and Ahklaq to raise balanced Muslims of tomorrow.
We will take the practical life exercise from this session along with other core subjects and will cover lessons on Islamic morals and etiquettes, grace and courtesy, care of self and care of the environment. Parents were called upon to cooperate with the school in ensuring that lessons taught in the school on this new subject are reinforced at home.
5.0 WHY DO WE OFFER S.T.E.M IN ZYTOON?
The school launched its Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program in July 2018. Coding and robotics were introduced to the pupils with relevant resources in the school, while conscious effort was made to integrate the concept with other related subjects.
Our fond for STEM and continuous effort to invest more and open new grounds in it, is a result of the followings;
- STEM related skills are 21st century demand that every child must acquire to compete and succeed.
- STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators and creators.
- STEM will avail us the opportunity to inculcate some basic and important skills into our pupils. The skills pupils tend to gain when involved in STEM activities include, analytical skills, science skills, mathematical skills for calculations and measurement, attention to details to follow a standard blueprint, record data accurately, write instructions, technical skills, desktop publishing skills and basic I.T skills.
All the above-stated reasons, which are in line with the vision of the school, make the integration of STEM into our pupil’s learning schedule a must endeavour necessary to give them the right foundation to excel in this life.
6.0 OUR ISLAMIC CURRICULUM
Our Islamic Curriculum as presented at the conference covers areas of learning, which include Hifz (Qur’an memorization), Qirah (Arabic Literacy), Arabiyyah (Arabic communication), Tajweed (the rules governing the art of reading Qur’an), Adhkar (Prayers), Adhab and Akhlaq (manners and etiquettes), Taoheed (fundamentals of faith), Fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) and Hadith.
The hifz scheme of work is designed in a way that, learners would have memorized the Holy Quran up to Juz Tabarak, which has 48 Surahs and covers One-Third of the Holy Quran by the end of Year 5.
Pupils are usually introduced to Tajweed from Year 3 and will be able to read and recite the Qur’an with proficiency before graduating from the school.
The Arabiyyah lesson exposed our pupils to basic communication in Arabic, while they are taught substantial Adhkar to prepare them for future challenges. Islamic Essential is a core subject, which is a fusion of Tawheed, Fiqh, and the hadith, is emphasized to guide them adequately in all their religious acts.
Even though, we do not run a full hafiz program, we pride ourselves in the fact that our Jewels can stand firm in the future as a conscious Muslim well equipped with all it takes to practice pristine Islam.
7.0 OUR NEW AGENDA FOR YORUBA AS A SUBJECT, LANGUAGE AND CULTURE.
Statistics show that over 98% of our pupils are Yoruba in origin, less than 20% of these pupils can speak and understand the Yoruba Language and below 10% of the older ones can read and write the language. This situation, which is not peculiar to the school but a common social deficiency has great effect on the new generations’ social mentality, values, pride and integration. In the bid to promote the Yoruba culture and prepare our pupils to excel in the subject when they get to the secondary school, we have designed the following activities to help our pupils learn the language with ease and fun.
- Hold Yoruba assembly every Tuesday of the week.
- Simplify Yoruba literacy for our pupils by taking advantage of their prior knowledge of English phonics to teach Yoruba alphabets and sounds.
- Teach our pupils interesting Yoruba literatures like folksongs, tales, praise poetry, history among others.
- Declare all last Fridays of the month as “Yoruba day”, where the followings would be observed;
- Both learners and staff would dress to school on any desired Yoruba outfit.
- Pupils will have the opportunity to showcase the aspect of the Yoruba literacy that they have learnt.
- All lessons for the day will be taken in the language.
- The preferred meal for the day will be our local dishes.
Parents are implored to support the program to achieve its goals.
8.0 THE SCHOOL STUDENT REPRESENTATIVE COUNCIL
The school Student Representative Council (SRC) is a project embarked upon in the school to acquaint our pupils with the concept of leadership and foster in them the basic skills required to take up leadership roles and render selfless services to the society in the future. Apart from developing leadership skills, our pupils will equally learn the art of good followership through the project. The project will help them to be established in the process of election and selection of leaders, which they learnt in their RNV lessons and make them to be conscious of Islamic teachings on leaders and leadership.
Programs outlined to achieve the goals of this project are;
- Selection of pupils from Year 5 and 4 to contest for various posts in the school.
- Holding of Leadership Speech Contest in the school to foster public speaking, confidence and spirit of healthy competition in the pupils.
- Holding of election program to reinforce what pupils have learnt about selection of leaders in their Religion and National Values lesson.
- General orientation and training of appointed student leaders to inform them of expectations.
- Holding of investiture ceremony to remind the elected pupils of the importance of their roles.
The date of each of these activities will be duly communicated to parents for effective participation and support.
9.0 THE YOUNG PHILANTHROPY PROJECT (YPP) AND DECLAMATION CONTEST
The Young Philanthropy Project (YPP) was explained at the conference as a Zytoon way of marking the International Philanthropy Day, which is celebrated every 15th day of November. The motive behind the project is inform our pupils that Success is paramount, it is never achieved by accident, but through hard work, and it is better enjoyed by sharing.
The declamation contest on the other hand is an avenue to intensively train our pupils on the art of public speaking and elocution. Both the declamation contest and YPP have been held successfully in the past with immense impact on our jewels.
Activities lined up for this year’s programs are;
- Mobilize used household materials from homes (parents, families and friends)
- Collectively work to improve on the materials received.
- Use the materials to raise fund on the YPP Day.
- Share the materials to the needy around and use the money realized from sales to undertake a Community Social Responsibility (CSR) project.
- Organize a Millionaire get-together, declamation contest and sales to mark the International Philanthropy Day on the 16th of November, 2019.
To make this program a success, parents are enjoined to;
- Reiterate the objectives of the program to their children at home.
- Donate used but good materials to the school for the purpose of the program within the stipulated time.
- Volunteer in the improvement process of the received items.
- Participate in the sales program for the materials.
- Support in preparing their wards for the Declamation Contest.
10.0 REMARKS FROM PARENTS
The followings were the major issues raised by parents at the conference;
- A call for an extension of the STEM activities beyond the classroom. (The management promises to look into the possibility of reinstating the weekend coding program).
- A demand for explanation for phasing out of journals in the primary section. (The management explained that the journal was phased out because of its inability to completely fulfill its purpose for the science subject and the Cambridge Learner’s book and Activity books, which are the new substitutes are better alternatives).
- An inquiry into when the school will commence swimming activity. (The management promised to commence swimming activity as soon as they are able to reach an agreement with pool facility manager and trainer).
11.0 GENERAL REMARKS AND DATES TO NOTE
- Parents are encouraged to follow up on their wards daily activities in the school and monitor their homework at home.
- Parents are encouraged to get MP3 speaker and SD card for their wards to enhance the process of Qur’an memorization.
- They are also encouraged to bring their wards to the 2019 Edition of Islamic Education Fair (IEF) organized by Radio Lagos 107.5 FM and Eko 89.7FM, which will hold on 6th November, 2019 at Lateef Jakande Road, Agidingbi, Ikeja, Lagos. Fee per child: N3, 000.
- The school plans to hold a Science Fun Fair before the end of the Session.
- The various club activities Chess, Takweaondo, Reader’s club and Yoruba club are still ongoing. The school solicits for age appropriate story books to support the Readers Club.
The requirement for the chess and taekwondo clubs are as follows;
Chess: termly fee of N3, 000 and Chess Board
Takweaondo: termly fee of N5, 000 and Uniform (N6000)
- The Leadership Speech Presentation will hold on Thursday 17th of October, 2019. Concerned parents of nominated pupils are to assist their wards in preparing for the speech.
- The Young Philanthropy Project would be celebrated on Saturday 16th November, 2019. Please, note that a letter of request would be sent home later for parents’ to donate generously to the project.
- Washing, drying and packaging of the donated items will be done in the school premises on Saturday November 2nd, 2019. Parent volunteers would be welcomed to the program and appreciated.
- Billionaire’s get-together, Declamation contest and sales of received items would also hold on Saturday 16th November, 2019.
- The project to be embarked on for the CSR and it’s date will be communicated at the appropriate time.
Thank you for your usual support and cooperation.