A critical reform

The science curriculum is being reformed and could likely be introduced in 2017.

This is an important event not only for the education sector but the country.

Some studies have claimed that countries with a solid science programme in their schools tend to do better economically.

Even if this co-relation may not be a solid one, there is still much a country can gain with a strong science programme.

Science is the best subject for a child’s natural curiosity.

Any parent would know how inquisitive their children are.

By being introduced to scientific methods at an early age, children can learn how to look for answers and form their own opinions based on various sources of information.

We teach our children how to become problem solvers. They learn to seek solutions recognising that failure is a part of the process. This process nurtures creativity and invention, two activities that could aid us greatly in our drive for self-sustainability.

We would have local solutions to local problems and reducing our dependence on donor aid and expertise.

Our future generations may also be more skeptical, in terms of accepting information blindly. For instance, many of us have fallen prey to scams both international and local. By having a questioning nature, we become less naive and gullible.

We learn to logically deduct situations. Skepticism can be a useful tool.

We would question some of our habits and practises. We would also understand why we continue to carry on with some of our habits and practises. We would understand life a little better.

The reform will look to make the learning of science a more hands-on experience, related to careers, life skills and information technology.

For those of us who may have spent years memorising formulas, definitions, and other kinds of irrelevant content during our school years, this should come as a relief. Our children will have a better education than their parents. We are grateful.

We assume that the new curriculum will mean more field trips so that students understand how science relates to their everyday lives. It is also hoped the science curriculum will be linked with the other subjects like maths and economics so students are able to see the connections and as a result comprehend a subject better.

But a strong science curriculum must also be complimented with an equally strong social sciences programme. While science can provide the methodology of reasoning, providing the context within which the reasoning occurs is equally important. For instance, when it comes to our identity, history, culture and traditions, the methodology of science can answer why we choose certain paths over others.

In the end, the success of any science programme depends on the teachers. We are aware that our teachers have been provided some trainings for the curriculum. It is hoped that they receive the support necessary to ignite and keep aflame the passion to teach an important subject.

Bhutan may have embarked on the path to modern development later but with this new science curriculum, we will be taking another large leap towards joining the age of technology.

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