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Thursday, August 09, 2018

Classroom without borders | The Star Online

"WANTING their children to learn at their own pace, a community of parents in Penang have opted to put their children out of the public school system and chosen to homeschool them instead" explains Logeiswary Thevadass - Authors | The Star Online.

Students from a homeschooling centre building a garden structure.
Photo: The Star Online

From as young as five, an estimated 200 children here follow structured homeschooling syllabuses that let them learn at a rate of their own choosing.

The parents form communities, held together by centres that manage the syllabuses, to create the necessary interactions for their children.

To move on to tertiary studies, the children take public examinations such as SPM as private candidates to earn the necessary qualifications to enter universities and colleges.

In one such centre, The Thinking Sun, 26 parents with 24 children follow an American-based syllabus known as Accelerated Christian Education (ACE)...

Besides the education syllabus, the students also have opportunities to experience things by hands-on activities.

They recently turned farmers, managing their own food gardens at Wonder Wilder Farm in Relau Agro-tourism Centre, where each of them was given a 2.3sq m plot of land to tend.

They were given the task of planting eight different crops and vegetables and they visited the farm weekly to see the growth and tend to their plants...

However, the ministry stated that parents needed to apply to be exempted from sending their children to regular schools.

In a study on homeschooling in Malaysia by researchers from Universiti Tun Hussein Onn and University Tunku Abdul Rahman in 2015, 5,000 children were estimated to be homeschooled in the country and the number was steadily growing.

Source: The Star Online