what we teach?
The recurring cycle of harm is not corrected by formal education and textbooks alone. The children’s way of life is not changed merely by reading and writing or completing certain coursework and obtaining passing grades. What Sobhe Rouyesh aims to accomplish is to educate the students with better ways of living and altering their path in life towards becoming valuable and effective citizens. To accommodate this, we designed a teaching method, namely “The Rouyesh teaching pattern” as implemented at Sobhe Rouyesh schools and its centers. The method is aligned with the country’s fundamental educational reform legislation and has similarities with current global educational practices.
Now, what is it that makes the Sobhe Rouyesh school so attractive that children attend the classes with eager and enthusiasm? The answer is: compassion and respect. There are no garrison mindsets at this school. The responsibility of school chores is with the children. They consider school a part of their living environment where they have their childhood. Instead of being afraid of the school principal, they choose good manners and they learn life skills and social communication from him/her and the other teachers. At school they learn how to say ‘no’; how to play a role in the society; they learn teamwork and work on school tasks together.
At Sobhe Rouyesh school many of the educational procedures are carried out with the participation of children. Classes are voluntary and enthusiastically cleaned by children. They distribute and split breakfast and lunch among each other; they eat at the spread together and then collect it themselves. They establish the classroom rules on their own, for example whether they need permission to drink or talk. All of these rules are established in the classroom by the kids and they learn lawfulness and discipline through logical principles.
Training skills is very important within the Rouyesh teaching pattern. The skills we teach children include the following:
- Intellectual skills (such as critical thinking and creative thinking);
- Communication skills (communication with self, God, others and nature);
- Decision-making skills (e.g. problem solving, decision making and taking action);
- Professional and occupational skills (e.g. craftsmanship, apprenticeships, entrepreneurship in various fields such as electrical, plumbing, accounting, graphics, etc.).
Moreover, the characteristics and personality traits of desirable and effective citizen in this model include:
– Fact-seeker and doer
– Just and peace-seeker
– Choice making and open-minded
– Responsible to God, ourselves, others, and the universe
– Purposeful and hopeful
– Self-made and possessing self-esteem
Children become familiar with decision-making skills at school and learn that they can make choices in their lives. If two students at school get involved in a fight (which is very likely at early ages), rather than the school threatening them with a disciplinary actions or lowering grades, they sit down at the conversation umbrella and with the help of school psychologists, they learn problem solving. They learn to keep calm at first, think about their differences, talk to one another and find a better solution than fighting for next time.
In the form of the life academy classes, students learn a variety of communication and life skills. In the game academy, they learn new topics and games through playing and the art academy teaches them creative art skills. In the homeland academy, in the simulated environment of the traditional classrooms, while familiarizing with national epics and religious and folk legends, they become acquainted with ancient Iranian and religious teachings.
Another one of Sobhe Rouyesh’s important activities is providing vocational training. Based on their respective talents and conditions, students start learning from the second year of elementary education so that by the age of 18, i.e. the end of their childhood, rather than getting involved with black market jobs or risky professions they can choose healthy jobs with modest income.
1- During the first phase, they learn basic skills and prerequisites such as hand sewing.
2- In the second phase, namely acquaintance, students are introduced to about a hundred different professions from baking pastries, video production, carpentry, plumbing, wiring, accounting and graphics.
3- The third step is about choosing the skills. Students complete the interest evaluation questionnaire and undergo related interviews. Among the skills taught, five professions are selected as aligned to the students’ interests.
4- The fourth stage is specialization. During this phase, in order to choose their occupation, students participate in specialized workshops in accordance with their five compatible skills.
5- Finally, in the fifth stage, in-school companies are registered where students get to play the roles in a simulated environment of the occupational world.
The Rouyesh teaching pattern encompasses many ideas that are exercised by the efforts of creative professionals at Sobhe Rouyesh. Essential points and ideas are revealed through a visit at one of the schools and do not fit within the limits of this context. You are more than welcome to arrange an in-person visit to find out more about the activities and teachings of Sobhe Rouyesh.
This post is also available in: Persian