Enrichment and tuition classes for children are a norm in Singapore. It is almost like a rat race for the parents to send their children to as many classes as they possibly can attend. Parents in Singapore have irrational fears that if their children are not attending extra classes, they are going to lack behind in school and fail. Is that really true?
Before you start sending your children to such classes, consider the 3 factors below.
1) Is your children coping well in school?
This is the number one question that most parents ask but seldom dive deep enough to understand the root of the problem. Most of the time, parents in Singapore send their children to expensive tuition classes because the children show some decline in their grades for a particular subject. However, parents did not stop to ask themselves if the children are constantly under performing or just weak in one or two topics in the syllabus. Therefore, find out the root cause from your children and their teachers (by attending the Parent Teacher Conference) before jumping to conclusion that your children are weak in the whole subject.
2) Can the school help your children do better?
If your children are coping well at school and excel in their studies most of the time, there is no reason for you to send them to more tuition classes because it does nothing to benefit them. If your children are weak in certain topics, check with the school teachers to see what is being done to help them. Most schools provide after class lessons for weaker students in particular topics, so check first before rushing to enroll your children in an unnecessary tuition class. However, if you feel that your children are still weak after putting in efforts to attend after school lessons and learning on their own, you can consider to find suitable classes for them to attend on a short-term basis until they grasp the topic.
3) What kind of classes are suitable for your children?
Most parents send their children to both enrichment AND tuition classes, packing the children’s schedule to the brim. This is detrimental to the children, as they do not have enough time to learn things besides what are dictated. If you have considered the 2 factors above, you may realise that your children do not need tuition classes because they are doing well in school. Therefore, enrichment classes that aim to deepen your children’s learning in both academic and non-academic ways might be better suited.
Enrichment classes usually offer varied programmes to cater to the different interests that your children may have. There are two types of enrichment classes – academic and non-academic.
Academic enrichment classes aim to indirectly aid the children in the understanding of subjects in school. Some examples are creative writing, speech & drama, arithmetic, learning journeys (excursions-based) and holiday camps/workshops.
Non-academic enrichment classes focus on other interests outside of school. Some examples are art & crafts, dance, digital media (animation, photography, etc) and sports.
Before sending your children to any enrichment classes, it can be useful to sit your children down and ask them what they would like to learn. This enhances the enjoyment of the lessons, and reduces the resistances of your children to go for such classes too!
In closing, we want to urge parents to consider carefully before sending your children to tuition classes as it may not always benefit them. Sometimes, enrichment classes work better for your children and also broaden their horizons in learning new and exciting skills.