A child’s worldview is often limited to the physical environment that they are in, which often centres around either the classroom or the home – but this should not be the way. Matters of the outside world beyond the cloistered spaces of the school and home can often seem complicated to children; abstract to some, overwhelming for others. This makes it even more crucial for parents to be the first touchpoint to ease them into local and international current affairs.
Cultivating the curiosity and interest in learning and keeping up to date with such issues brings about a treasure trove of benefits that will stay with them till they enter adulthood. Here is a brief rundown on some of the merits of being more aware of current affairs and how you can further support your child at the side.
Keeping Abreast of Current Affairs Can Benefit Your Child’s Future
1. Excelling in Academics
The education curriculum in Singapore changes every few years, each modification demanding the students be intellectually and emotionally more mature to grasp the bigger picture, especially in the secondary and tertiary levels. Classes will reflect these expectations by way of readings, assessments, and examinations. Naturally, discussions on current events linked to major political, economic, and social issues will increase in the classrooms. Students are required to be aware of global and local issues to meet these demands and participate in a robust and productive discourse, which will better prepare them for when such arguments need to be laid out on paper.
2. Develop Critical Thinking Skills
Due to globalisation and digital advancements, the world is becoming increasingly interconnected than ever before. Issues that are seemingly not relevant to our immediate environment will have a ripple effect, effectively influencing one’s circumstances in one way or another. As such, it simply would not do to be willfully ignorant of the ways of the world.
Simply understanding the world’s “whats”, “hows”, and whys” during discussions of current events will foster critical and sophisticated thinking. It offers students a wide lens approach to the topic that can be seen from many angles, pushing them to make connections between a breadth of issues. Adopting an inquisitive approach when identifying and examining such issues encourages the brain to develop more complex neural pathways, giving way to several cognitive benefits including better decision-making skills, reinforces problem-solving activity, and improved creativity, amongst many others. These benefits will stick with them as they grow, allowing them to better identify opportunities and better plan for the future.
3. Raising a Well-Rounded Child
To understand current affairs is to dip your toes into various intersectional issues. Your child will realise how these issues are often than not, multifaceted and intersectional – they are indeed, very complex. By using multiple social and political lenses and utilising the global perspective when addressing such issues, your child will gain a head start in acquiring critical skill sets. Moreover, should you guide them through the nuances and sensitivities of certain delicate or controversial issues, your child will be able to gain emotional and social skills that will help them better navigate through not only discourses, but also relationships with people.
How to Ignite That Spark
There are a couple of ways you can do as a parent to promote their curiosity for current affairs. Here are some that you can incorporate at home:
Focus on your child’s life and interest: Global and local political crises, national security, and international relations are big concepts that can overwhelm even adults. Break down these issues and use your child’s point of interest to introduce complex ideas, which would stimulate their curiosity for the issue, motivating them to actively engage the topic within their own capacity. By using relevancy and their interests, you can guide them through the discourse and help them expand their way of thinking.
Talk about what they have learnt: As with any learning, the facilitator will need to wrap up the discussion, summarise and reiterate the talking points made. If you and your child have engaged in an in-depth talk about a particular topic, it is essential to consolidate big ideas and bits of information. This not only allows your child to remember those points, but it also allows them to tinker with them in their own time. Be sure to also include their thoughts and feelings when doing so.
Having a safe space for open communication and debate is key: Conversation is a two-way street. You will need to provide your child with the space for them to think aloud and feel freely, without any form of judgement or reprimanding on your part. Be sure to gently nudge your child in the correct direction if you think they are straying too far,
Supporting Your Child Learn and Explore
Learning does not end in the classroom, it continues at home as well. As a parent, supporting your child as they learn and develop their own opinions and critical thinking skills is crucial. If you are not equipped with the necessary tools and resources to assist your child, let us help you!
At Jocelyn Chinese, we take pride in offering our students the space and opportunity to engage in necessary discourse and practice that will help them excel in their studies. We make it a point to be a tuition centre in Singapore that offers Chinese enrichment classes based on a teaching methodology that enhances your child’s learning potential, allowing them to reach their very best. Online or otherwise, our tuition classes revolve around exam-oriented lessons and the incorporation of effective bilingual teaching. If you wish to learn more about our online lessons, simply contact us and we will answer any enquiries that you may have.