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Nigeria's leading finance and market intelligence news report.

Why learning outcome in Nigeria remains weak

Tara Vishwanath, the lead economist of the World Bank has stated that though more Nigerian youths are in school, the learning outcome remains weak.

Vishmanath asserted while speaking at the World Bank virtual media briefing titled ‘Good jobs for a new generation’, held on October 14, 2021.

“There are more Nigerian youths in school, but the learning outcome remains weak,” she said.

Experts have attributed this to many factors such as outdated curriculum, wrong teaching methods among others. Most of the teachers experts said are using our modelled methods.

Lizzy Ohaka, a Universal Learning Solutions (ULS) trainer said the root reason for the weak outcome of education products especially at the foundational level is that many teachers are not using proven and trusted methods to teach such as the Jolly Phonics method.

“Jolly phonics for example is a proven, tested and trusted method to teach but many schools are not willing to adopt the method,” she said.

Jolly Phonics is a teaching programme and/or workshop for teachers to be able to teach the modern learning mechanism that helps children learn to read and write through a systematic programme.

With Jolly Phonics children learn the main 42 sounds of English, not just the alphabet sounds as they also learn to blend sounds to form words and then to read. Jolly Phonics teaches children to read and write using synthetic phonics, which is widely recognised as the most effective way to teach children to read and write in English.

Read also:  Kogi state raises education budgetary allocation to 30%

Ohaka, disclosed to BusinessDay that Jolly Phonics training is meant to expose young teachers to a better way of inculcating the acts and arts of reading and writing in children.

“The aim is to learn the context of the sentences and stories to help master the nuts and bolts of literacy. Jolly Phonics pulls the words apart into sounds before blending them into the whole world. The idea is that students will then begin to automatically blend their phonemes. It is fun, quick, multi-sensory and effective,” she said.

But for Yinka Bolarinwa, a public affairs analyst, the factors responsible for the learning outcome to be so abysmal or lower than the target expectations are oftentimes based on curriculum and the methods of teaching. “How are the students being taught in the different programmes which they take?” Bolarinwa asked.

“Most Nigerian curricula do not align so much in terms of their output with regards to industrialisation, in most developed countries the curriculum has an impact on the business of the community but in Nigeria, it does not,” he said.

Bolarinwa advocates that the youths need to be engaged with so much more technology to reduce the high level of non-employability and unemployment, especially among fresh graduates.

Stanley Alaubi, a senior lecturer at the University of Port Harcourt said that real-life situations need to come into play in our teachings.

“Learning outcomes are weak because what is needed is not learnt,” he said.

Alaubi maintains that curriculum review is essential if Nigeria is to come out of this morbid situation.

Ohaka who earlier reiterated that Jolly Phonic will address the dearth of reading amongst many Nigerian children by the funs it brings to learning.

Jolly Phonics, now used in over 100 countries worldwide, provides learners with a 7-year school programme that teaches not only phonics but systematic teaching of grammar, spelling and punctuation across the school years.

Teaching is multi-sensory and active, with fun actions, stories and songs.

It embraces independent research which has helped the programme achieve outstanding results around the world. This style of learning continues to revise and extend children’s phonic knowledge; flexible and easy to implement in your school and developed by teachers for teachers.

With increasing research all over the world on Jolly Phonics, there is evidence that results made by children using Jolly Phonics far exceed that of children not taught using a synthetic phonics approach. It is also effective across the ability range of both male and female students; as well as those with English as their second language.

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