Building human character in the new norm


International meeting on preschool education in October

KUCHING: The Welfare, Community Welfare, Women, Family and Child Development Ministry will be holding an International Convention on Preschool Education from October 1 to October 3.

In a statement today, Welfare, Community Welfare, Women, Family and Child Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah revealed that a pre-convention workshop was held today via Google Meet application.

“The workshop enabled participants to share best practices or provide suggestions for approaches or activities that can be implemented to help not only educate children but also instil good values ​​among children in the current situation,” she explained.

The minister added that the workshop was a joint effort of the ministry with the Early Childhood Development Division (BPAKK) and the Sarawak Early Childhood Education Development Council (MPAKS) involving educators, operators and nannies from government and private kindergartens/nurseries.

“The theme of this year’s convention is ‘Building Human Character in the New Norm’. The convention aims to increase the knowledge and understanding of educators on the basics of human character formation among children as well as identify challenges in shaping the human characters, talents, interests and potential of children during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“It also aims to improve educators’ skills in new norms to cultivate and nurture children’s spiritual, cognitive, social, physical and emotional development,” she added.

Fatmah pointed out that the Covid-19 pandemic had greatly impacted the early childhood development sector as some kindergartens and nurseries had to be closed.

This brings to the implementation of Home Teaching and Learning (PdPR) which results in various challenges not only to employers, parents, but most importantly, to the children themselves.

“PdPR which demands the presence of parents is a major challenge to working parents even if they work from home. Not to mention, access to the internet or the absence of a device is also a constraint to parents.

“As a result, teachers are unable to implement effective teaching as the effectiveness of the PdPR in Early Childhood Education is limited,” she added.

Fatimah said during the movement control order (MCO), activities that involved playing, socialising, and interacting could be carried out.

“This automatically affects the social and emotional development of children as efforts to inculcate noble values ​​such as cleanliness, independence, patriotism, cooperation, respect and so on are also difficult to do,” she added.

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