How dotShule simplifies the New Lower Secondary Curriculum -related activities
The new lower secondary curriculum is a competency-based curriculum that mainly focuses on formative assessments to ensure that learners have effectively learnt and attained the abilities, skills, and values required to be employed in the world of work upon completing the secondary education level.
Formative assessment is a diverse form of assessing learners in various dimensions on a subject matter ranging from practical skills, written work - topic Activities of Integration, oral work, group work, projects, values and attributes among others. It, therefore, results in the cumulative collection of learners' performance data in the entire learning cycle. Collection, storage, and analysis of this data can not easily be handled by traditional information management practices (paperwork).
From lesson planning to topic activities, Activities of Integration, recording learners’ attendances and observations during lessons to processing of learners’ report cards and issuing reports online as well as keeping learners’ score records in an organized form that is easy to interpret and seamless to submit to UNEB!
All these activities call for usage of ICT in education processes!
In 2020, NCDC introduced the competency-based curriculum in lower secondary. This curriculum aims at promoting effective learning by reducing content overload while at the same time, producing a holistic learner equipped with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes required for the 21st century.
Most of the 21st-century skills are connected to technology/ICT, which makes it dual-functional in the new curriculum settings, that is;
ICT as a subject examinable by the Uganda National Examination Board.
ICT as a pedagogical tool for teaching and learning - where its use is already integrated into the learning activities and managing the new curriculum records.
Schools mainly concentrate their efforts on teaching ICT as a subject; those that try to use, only focus on pedagogical purposes. The latter function is ignored for reasons like varying ICT knowledge background, limited ICT exposure, insufficient ICT budget and hesitant mindset towards change!
Recently, the Government of Uganda allowed students to have smartphones at schools purposely as one way of complementing the school ICT infrastructure. However, to date, it is still debatable by many schools whether or not to permit smartphones. Smartphones may distract learners from their education, promote cheating and academic dishonesty but such drawbacks only become valid when learners lack a clear direction on constructive ways of using smartphones to support their education. When learners are well directed, we can register positive impacts on smartphone use; the same way we regulate fire that cooks food since it can as well cook the chef!
Our attention should focus on the best strategies for addressing the appropriate ways of using ICT in managing education and the new curriculum activities and the only way to effectively manage all activities is by using modern ICT systems like dotShule.
Besides keeping of records, producing learners’ termly reports starts from the first lesson a teacher conducts in the term; where as the teacher records observation remarks and generic skills learners express, the details are compiled
ICT is considered an enabler
for further innovations that supports the transformation of education and schools once
ICT will continue to play a vital role in helping to overcome the new curriculum and educational problems faced by most learning centres even when schools base on word of mouth to make decisions about education technologies rather than evidence of effectiveness.