Exams! The word itself is not particularly appealing to anyone. To students, they may think (and I emphasize 'think,' as it is our responsibility to change this) that the day of the exams is considered to be among the 5 or 6 most important days of their life. To parents whose anxiety is enormous because they believe their child "must succeed." And to teachers, who confront themselves twice a year (at least) about whether they are capable of doing this job!
But is it really so?
Of course, not for me!!!
Text by: Popi Kazantinou
Whether a student speaks the language they have been taught and learns about its culture cannot be determined through exams. Exams cannot 'verify' students' knowledge as a whole. It is our responsibility to teach children the language and not just prepare them solely for exams. Each student is unique; therefore, they have their own personal learning profile, their own needs, and quests.
This is what we need to focus on if we want children to be educated globally in a foreign language. We explore paths of literature, theater, painting, music, etc., and choose the right educational programs and books with care. We do not discredit the publishing houses, but we make a careful choice!
Not everything is suitable for everyone!
Regarding parents, it is crucial to discuss with them, from our very first meeting, how our educational system operates, its content, and structure.
Whether a student takes an exam or not, this is neither a championship nor a speed race. Throughout all these years of teaching, my absolute priority has been to ensure that the children are happy. I want them to come and leave my school laughing, using the foreign language to talk about topics they like and appreciate.
They know that the exam date is an opportunity to express themselves, both in writing and speaking, to 'prove' to others what they have learned.
Does it really matter if we take the exam at 14, 15, or 20?