Ministry to lighten load of school curriculum
  • | VNS | August 24, 2011 05:55 PM

The Ministry of Education and Training has reduced some of the contents in curriculum at primary and high schools, despite concerns from some teachers and school management boards over the move.

Students review lessons at Sin Cheng Primary School in Si Ma Cai District, Lao Cai Province.

The curriculum has been streamlined in several ways, including reduction of skills and knowledge that are taught repeatedly in different subjects and at different grades.

The move also aims to lessen the number of difficult questions and exercises and adjust skills and topics that are taught to ensure they are suitable for local cities and provinces. For example, schools in cities would teach students techniques to grow ornamental plants while those in provinces would teach students afforestation. The sequencing of lessons has also been rearranged.

"The reduction is hoped to lessen the heavy study burden shouldered by students," said Deputy Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Vinh Hien. "It also helps teachers and students have more time to specialise in necessary knowledge."

But some teachers are concerned the new curriculum now omits several interesting topics.

Nguyen Minh Hue, a teacher at the Thinh Quang Primary School, said that lessons on morality held at the school during the past few years had students develop short plays based on the lessons\' content. But now students would no longer get the chance to take part in this engaging theatrical activity.

"My students were very excited about the plays, and the lessons are sure to be less interesting if they scrap the plays," she said.

Deputy principal of the Khuong Dinh Junior Secondary School Dang Ngoc Tram said she was also worried that her sixth grade students would miss out on important lessons on literature.

Lessons on metonymy and metaphors used to be repeated in Grades seven, eight and even nine as they were quite difficult to master, but now they would be ignored in the higher grades, she said.

"I think we should maintain this type of repetition to ensure students can thoroughly grasp these ideas," said Tram.

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