Education authority should place less emphasis on examination, Morayo Oyin- Adejobi, Teachers Naija runners up
Demola Adefajo’s Blog (DAB) publisher, Demola Adefajo, last week met the second runners up of the just concluded Teachers Naija House Reality Show Mrs Morayo Oyin Adejobi and she spoke on her experience in the House.
Can we meet you?
My name is Morayo Rosaline Oyin Adejobi, information technology teacher at Abesan Junior Comprehensive College, Ipaja, Lagos State.
What informed your taking part in the Teachers Naija House?
Some times past, I have been attending different programmes for professional development’s sake. I just came across the advert on Instagram and I decided to apply. It was very rigorous and tedious at the beginning. It was very tedious applying. I took the shot and applied. That was how the journey began. The programme started initially at the beginning of 2021. That was when the journey began. The programme initially began at the beginning of this year.
That was when the application began: writing a lot of essays relating to the field of education and the like.
We wrote a lot of essays before we were shortlisted and admitted into the House. 100 male teachers and 100 female teachers were shortlisted. Later they told us they wanted to cut it down to 20 males and 20 females. I made it to the top 20. For the males, they gave a teacher an automatic slot into the house. They gave them a competition during the Covid-19 lockdown. They were to do micro teaching on topics of their choice. Olatunji Raphael who later became House mate No 20 came tops in that competition. So he had automatic entry into the House. So after short listing the first 20 each, they then streamed it down to first ten males and females before we eventually made it to the House for the Reality Show.
What were some of the things you did in the House?
We did a lot of things. I used to think I was working under pressure. But when I got to the House I realised you just have to think outside the box, relating everything to your classroom. In the House, we were given a lot of tasks ranging from debates, faceoff, drama presentation, swimming pool competition, pool side competitions, no child must be left behind. We did that one in the bush where we were looking for students. We were told to relate the bush experience to our classroom environment where you have the high flyers, the average learners and the slow learners. They used medals to represent different categories of students. The medals you pick determine your scores. If you are able to identify the slow learners or the weak learner, you get higher points. Meaning when you get back to your respective schools, you will identify more with the slow learners and work more with them and concentrate on them.
It will help you as a teacher. Most people prefer working with the high flyers. But your success as a teacher is always determined by the slow learners. We did that.
We had a drama presentation on unity in diversity. We wrote the scripts ourselves. We composed songs and it brought out the creativity in us. We did the tourism challenge whereby you are to tell people places of interest in your state of origin.
We filled the class registers. We did a microteaching for just four minutes. You are to improvise. Instructional materials were not provided. You just had to think outside the box. These are just few of the things we did in the House.
How informative was the experience?
It was and it is still informative and rewarding because many of the things I learnt in the House are experiences that will last a life time. I can also remember the convener Mr Ubaka conducted some field tests on us, saying they will help us who we really are. A lot of people don’t know who they are. If you don’t know who you are, you might not be able to make good decisions in life. The test comprises of yur sleeping position, your sitting position, how do you stand when people are talking to you, and things like that. When the test was conducted everybody knew their real personality. Wow! This is who I really I am. It enabled us know whether we are right brain or left brain person. Someone like me when the evaluation came out it shows that I don’t really like writing and when I write I write fast. I want to quickly put things down the way I am thinking. I want to put everything down fast. I prefer spoken words and typing to writing. He said people like us are not really fixed or organised. Sincerely, that is who I am. If what I plan doesn’t work out, I switch. But a fixed or organised person would want to work around how the person will get what he has planned.
So the experience will last a life time.
Relating the experience on fast, average and slow learners to the school environment
In time past I have worked with slow learners but I am going to concentrate more on them now. I have a lot of work to do. Anybody has no hiding place. Like the theme of that task: No child must be left behind. I am not going to leave any child behind.
There was also another task where same examination was set for different animals. The animals were told to climb the same tree. We had a monkey, a bird, elephant, and the fish. According to Albert Einstein, if you judge a fish by its inability to climb a tree, it will live its live believing it is a failure. So examination must be fair to all students. Some students affective and psychomotor may be higher than the cognitive skill. For my own assessment as a class teacher, if you attend my class, you must have a mark. You copy my note, there is something for you; you answer my question, you earn some marks. I have determined that whatever it takes to reward my students for attendance, answering question, contributing will be given. Everyone must contribute as from this moment onward.
Role of the stakeholders in bringing out the best in the slow learners in view of the undue emphasis on result
Like I said about the task of asking an elephant to climb a tree, our examination is not fair to all students. There are times some students would complain ‘they have not taught us’. Sometimes second term examination is set with questions that are in the third term scheme. As a teacher, you are the one who should assess your students. The assessment should carry every student along.
We will continue to write recommendations to the government as stakeholders. We will continue to notify all bodies that teachers are represented in, the school management, the Nigeria Union of Teachers, Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools, and all other stakeholders in the education sector. We will continue to pressurise them to let the government carry the teachers and the students along.
The emphasis has always been on all students must pass and it is always based on examinations. It should go beyond examinations. Like Finland that has the best education policy in the world doesn’t make use of examination as the yardstick to promote the students.
We should look beyond just books, books and books. Like the competition I went for, it went beyond your teaching skills and ability. I study Information Technology and I should have no business around drama. But we were all involved in writing the drama script. Together we composed the songs. My role was even more in the drama. We had a cooking competition. I don’t teach cooking. But in the cooking competition I prepared a soup from the Eastern part of Nigeria, not what we eat in the western part of Nigeria. So the teaching should be all round, all encompassing. It shouldn’t just be particular yardstick alone.
The government is really trying. Teachers in our little ways should help the government. We always make request to government on what we need. We allow the government to know what we need. In times past I was always complaining in one way or another. But with this show, we discover that as teachers we can do our bits to help the government. The government may not be able to do everything. We as teachers can also assist in our own little ways. We can provide instructional materials that we need. We can also provide certain things that we need. You can ask the students to bring some items like needle and thread to demonstrate to them. They can come with the Ankara that they have at home that they are not making use of for their Home Economics practical. We know we are overpopulated in many of the schools. We can look for cheaper alternatives that can help our students since we know that it may take time before what we request for gets to us.
Interaction with teachers in private schools
Most private school teachers in the House have issues with their bosses. They are frustrating them because they feel there is nowhere for them to go. They use them for more than they are paid for. Most of them go for professional training within and outside the country. It is evident. Most of them complain about their pay, workload and the likes. They have fewer students in their classes compared to the teachers in public schools. In times past people used to have the impression that teacher in public schools should always look haggard. They were surprised in the Houses when they saw younger generation, tech savvy teachers from public schools. In most of the task the teachers from the government schools were always beating them. We had a competition where I saw English teachers crying that they couldn’t believe what we were doing. Personally, I study Information Technology yet I beat them in their areas of specialisation. Though they are exposed to training, people like us go for it even when we are not given.
You must be ahead of your students. Personally, I would rather advise that you should sponsor yourselves, develop yourself as a teacher. That is just the basic. We must develop ourselves.
Like I said earlier, I am Oyin Adejobi Morayo Rosaline, a 37-year-old Computer Science graduate of Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye. I have a Post-Graduate Diploma in Education from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN). I have a lot of certifications to my name. I have 166 certifications in Microsoft. I also have Certificate from the Management and Strategy Institute of which I am an ambassador. I am an Olympia ambassador. I belong to the Oracle Academy. My school is also an institution member of the Oracle Academy. I have a lot of certificates from the Oracle Academy. I am the STEM coordinator in my school. I am also the coordinator of Steam Up Lagos in my school. I belong to a lot of committees in my school. Then for the just concluded Teachers Naija Reality Show I emerged the second runners up with N1 million cash prize. I am also entitled to return ticket to exotic location which is yet to be specified. I also had a tourism challenge in the House of which I would be travelling to an exotic location also. There is also this school in the UK, Chartered Institute of Education Practitioners in the UK which conducted a test for us in the House. I emerged top and I was given a cash prize of N30, 000. Due to the competition I was given a scholarship and Post Graduate Diploma in Education certificate in a school in the UK. I am a tourism Ambassador. African Union ambassador also. These are just a list of whom I am