Lagos – Mr Gbenga Sesan, Executive Director, Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN), on Thursday urged educators to understand that schools’ curriculum did not determine what a child learns in the present age.
Sesan made the appeal during a debate organised by the Women’s Technology Empowerment Centre (W.TEC) at the ongoing Social Media Week in Lagos.
The debate had the theme “Social Media in Schools: A Case for Tech Curriculum’’.
According to Sesan, the social media curriculum is already in schools and that what educators need to know is that curriculum does not determine what students learn.
“Students learn from the sideline these days, so, what curriculum does is to assist them to learn the right thing and well,’’ he said.
He said that for the better implementation, teachers needed to take the content to where the children were by making teaching fun.
He added that they needed to make sure that the relevance of the content was seen in the long run to have the required impact.
Sesan said that in safeguarding people and the younger ones online, government needed to implement the cybercrime law.
The PIN executive director also urged parents and guardians to always monitor and check their wards.
He noted that they need to explain to youths the good and bad sides of social media at an early stage.
In submission, Mrs Ommo Clark, Chief Executive Director, iBez, said that for implementation, learning had to be structured and that students should be educated on the pitfall of the platform.
“The archaic method of teaching in the country must be changed; it should be tailored towards the digital age to have a change in people’s mindset.
“The unsavory aspect of being online is fraud and so government needs to put in place and implement laws that will change this phenomenon.
“There is no distraction in the use of social media since when you get into it, you need to be focused to get what you want,’’ she said.
Mr Oluseye Johnson, Innovation and Business Development Expert in Ericsson Nigeria, marketers of phones and other electronic devices, said that with the introduction of social media, ideas were shared in new ways.
“Social media is giving transformation in all sectors of the economy of which the educational sector should use the platform to create and invent things that will boost industry.
“If we are going to drive the new economy, it has to start with education and this will help to circumvent our educational institutions.
“There is need to transform the social media with educational contents that are secure so that students can play with the space and be at par with their mates,’’ he said.
Johnson said that there was also the need for government to initiative what would put learning into movies and scripts that would attract the child’s attention.
Also Mr Adeyemi Odutola, Communications Officer, W.TEC, said that the educational system had enough problems to be adding social media to it.
“If with our simple curriculum now we are not getting things right with the constant 70 per cent failures registered in exams, how do we now add a complex one like social media?
“When it is added, it will be addictive, consuming and distractive and this will damage a system bus that is already damaged,’’ he said.
Odutola added that the present educational system was not prepared with the excesses of social media.
NAN also reports that the SMW is the largest, technology, new media and business conference on the continent of Africa. (NAN)