Fiji Sun » SVC https://fijisun.com.fj Leading Fiji newspaper for Fiji News, Sport and Pacific news Wed, 17 Jul 2019 02:56:44 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.3.19 Dux Sonali Make Parents Proud https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/11/22/dux-sonali-make-parents-proud/ https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/11/22/dux-sonali-make-parents-proud/#comments Wed, 21 Nov 2018 22:27:50 +0000 http://fijisun.com.fj/?p=449587

 

Swami Vivekananda College Dux, Sonali Shivani, dedicated her achievement to her parents who are both recovering from a heart condition.

The Year 13 student said seeing the health status of her parents’ earlier this year made her work hard in school as she pursued for the top award.

Her aim was to bring them good health and happiness.

She said: “It was the happiest day in my life because I have made my parents proud. It was not an easy journey for me this year because my parents both went oversees for treatment and they were not here during my final examination.

“Their health condition drives me to work hard to make them happy. I know my achievement today brings good health and happiness to my parents.”

Sonali said it had been a challenging year for her as she played multiple roles in school – as a leader and with studies.

“It was not easy but I have learnt to organised my time well and prioritise things which are more important,” the 18-year-old said.

“SVC will always remain in my heart forever because I have gained a lot from this institution.” Sonali also acknowledged her teachers, colleagues, relatives and friends who were supportive towards her throughout the year.
Next year she plans to pursue her studies in Accounting and Finance from the University of the South Pacific.

Her father, Pradeep Kumar said: “I am really proud of my daughter’s achievement. I want to thank the Almighty God for giving us good life so that we can be here today and witness my daughter’s achievement.

“My wife and I just returned from an operation.

I went for a heart surgery and my wife also has the same condition. We are happy parents today,” Mr Kumar said.

Her mother, Shashi Lata, said she was proud of her daughter.

She said: “The sacrifices and the support that we have made were worthwhile after watching her receive the student dux award.

“She deserves this award because she has worked hard for this. We always encouraged her to keep on striving for the best and she did it.”

The family resides in Malolo Transmitter, Nadi.

Sonali is the youngest of three siblings.

Edited by Caroline Ratucadra

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KULA FILM: College Film Based on True Story https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/07/24/kula-film-college-film-based-on-true-story/ https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/07/24/kula-film-college-film-based-on-true-story/#comments Mon, 23 Jul 2018 23:16:30 +0000 http://fijisun.com.fj/?p=429941 Swami Vivekananda College’s film for this year’s Kula Awards – Fijian Made Film Awards is dedicated to one of their special students, Thrivell Kartik Lal.

The script for the film, Dream Catcher, was modified to provide humour and to bring in social issues including bullying and relationships.

Vice principal Geeta Krishna said: “This year our school theme for the film is based on challenges faced by a special student; it is supporting inclusive education. It shows that despite the obstacles faced in school, a special child can fulfil his or her dreams and succeed in life.

“Everyone is looking forward to a positive outcome. We hope it inspires schools to take in special students to support inclusive education.”

This year a total of 18 students are involved. According to Mrs Krishna the preparation and build up to the submission of this year’s Kula Film has been challenging.

“Firstly new students coming in from primary school and the experienced ones leaving meant a new set of students had to be guided and trained from scratch,” she said.

“Secondly we received a number of scripts and choosing the right one was difficult. The script we chose eventually was something our principal Rajesh Krishna suggested since he was inspired by the special student we have in our college who is now a prefect and is excelling in his studies.”

The support from the administration (financial and moral) and teachers in charge have been great and it has helped this group to overcome obstacles and submit the film on time.

The training provided by Film Fiji through the three workshops has also assisted students to become better actors.

“The school is excited and hyped up for the meet since this year we have been nominated for the 12 awards category out of the 13,” Mrs Krishna said.

 

The school has participated in 2006, 2007, 2009 – 2012, 2015-2018 and nominated and won some awards.

In 2006, it won the most popular film award; in 2015 it received the Commendation Award.

The film is about a young boy who has enrolled in a normal secondary school after finishing his primary education in a special school.

It eventually shows how he is able to achieve his dream of being an aeronautical engineer.

The film shows the good and bad moments he faces in school and it shows a person’s determination to reach his goal.

The Fijian Made Film Awards and Fiji Airways Art competition will be held at Damodar City on July 27 and Fiji Link Dance competition will be held on July 28 at the FMF Gymnasium.

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback:  waisean@fijisun.com.fj

 

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Indian Minister of Higher Education in discussion with SVC students https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/02/22/indian-minister-of-higher-education-in-discussion-with-svc-students/ https://fijisun.com.fj/2018/02/22/indian-minister-of-higher-education-in-discussion-with-svc-students/#comments Wed, 21 Feb 2018 22:44:15 +0000 http://fijisun.com.fj/?p=409521

India’s Minister of State for Human Resource Development (Higher Education), Satya Pal Singh visited Swami Vivekananda College (SVC), in Malolo, Nadi, on Tuesday.

The Student Council was privileged by his visit as it gave the students a platform to questions him on the theme of “Education.”

Mr Singh while addressing the council said: “Education comprises the brain that receives knowledge, heart that has the will to help others in need.

“If the enthusiasm of a teacher and student for education is at the same level, that’s when the teaching is accomplished at its utmost,” added Mr Singh.

He added on to praise current education system of Fiji and the potentials of the students.

SVC Headboy Apimeleki Ralele, on behalf of the student council, acknowledged Mr Singh’s presence and the institution for providing such an opportunity, whereby they could gain far creative ideas from the Minister of State for Human Resource Development.    

A wide range of questions, particularly on “development of education in Fiji”, were posed by the student council.

Questions such as: “Do you think it is compulsory for schools to have cut-off lines for English marks when certain students have potential to excel in their career if learnt in their mother-tongue?” was asked by a student.

Another question posed by Roshni Panda was: “How is India tackling with the matter of climate change?”

More questions for better education, such as the availability of open discussion in foreign countries, were part of the discussion.

“These are very interesting questions,” said Mr. Singh, who was impressed by the searching questions addressed by the students.

The Minister was able to answer all the questions in the affirmative tone.

To the end of the agenda, SVC principal, Mr Rajesh Krishna thanked Mr Singh for providing an honourable occasion for the students.

Edited by Mohammed Zulfikar

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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Tool For All Aspects Of Life https://fijisun.com.fj/2017/04/02/tool-for-all-aspects-of-life/ https://fijisun.com.fj/2017/04/02/tool-for-all-aspects-of-life/#comments Sat, 01 Apr 2017 22:18:39 +0000 http://fijisun.com.fj/?p=363303  

 

The president of Nadi Principals Association: Setareki Merekula; the principal of Swami Vivekananda College Gyan Chand Sumer; the other members of the association and the invited principals; the Maths team from Curriculum Advisory Services; the presenters and facilitators; other invited guests; and ladies and gentlemen; good morning and warm greetings to one and all.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am indeed extremely delighted and greatly honoured to officiate at this first ever Nadi Secondary School’s Mathematics Workshop for the teachers. Let me begin by congratulating the Nadi Principal’s Association for having the vision to orchestrate this workshop for the Mathematics teachers. This is indeed an extremely stimulating and inspiring strategy and which will no doubt go a long way in supporting Mathematics Educators in Fiji.

Ladies and gentlemen, Mathematics is one of the most vital subjects in our daily lives. It does not only deal with calculations and remembering formulae and theorems.

Mathematics is all around us. It extends beyond the walls of the classroom and into normal life actions.

Maths is attached to life whether it is at work, at home or school. In the contemporary society, almost everybody uses technological gadgets and especially mobile phones and to use this, everyone needs to have simple knowledge about numbers, symbols and digits. Mathematics is also important in the kitchen. Before food is made, the ingredients must be measured in their right quantities and ratios. Mathematics plays an important role in understanding the contents of other subjects such as, Physics, Chemistry, Economics,  Geography and Accounting to name a few.

Art is another field where Maths is a vital ingredient. The artists use mathematics while making paintings, designing costumes as well as during performance. Mathematics plays a vital role in sports. Whether discussing a player’s success rate, or even the likelihood of a particular team winning a game, mathematics is involved.

Maths is used in athletics to help the athletes to achieve new distances, new speeds and new heights.

Thus we can say that without the help of mathematics we may not enjoy the true spirit of sports.

Ladies and gentlemen, Mathematics is also required to make decisions about one’s health. For example, Body Mass Index (BMI) is used to measure how overweight or obese an individual may be. Reading and interpreting nutrition fact labels on food packages also requires mathematics.

These interpretations and calculations can motivate individuals to stay consistent with their exercise in order to burn out the amount of calories one takes. The knowledge of Maths is a must while shopping. We all must know about preparation of budget, the number and amount of things to buy, the total amount to be paid, the amount saved if bought from different shops and the list goes on.

Ladies and gentlemen, therefore, Maths is part of our everyday lives. One does not need to go further but look into their own daily lives to realise the importance of Mathematics.

However, traditionally, Mathematics has been a subject which has not been popular with quite a number of students. Of course, there are many and varied reasons to all this. The added issue of Maths not doing well in National Examinations is perhaps a bigger cause for concern.

The Mathematics results in 2015 and 2016 External Examinations is certainly not encouraging.

Ladies and gentlemen, in all the External Examinations from 2015 to 2016, there has not been a single level which has attained percentage pass above 50. Meaning all Year 9, 10, 11, 12 and 13 streams percentage pass in Mathematics have been below 50 per cent in the past two years; the highest percentage pass for Maths in any grade being 43 per cent, attained by Year 13 in 2015.

In addition to this, at most levels the lowest marks stand at zero, revealing the child has zero knowledge of the Maths concepts taught in the year or zero mathematics knowledge.

Citing the importance of Maths in our lives, I am now concerned on the problems these children will face in future.

Ladies and gentlemen, a much closer analysis reveals that poor Maths results is right from the lower levels; levels which are tasked to build the basics of Mathematics. Years 9 and 10 over the years have generated equally disappointing results in Maths.

 

On another note, some key areas of difficulties that are prevalent in most Secondary school students in their  Maths acquaintance are:

Multiplication table;

Addition and subtraction of more than 2 digit numbers;

Usage of formulae: they are no able to read and interpret accordingly (finding area and volume);

Conversion of measurement units such as, changing from km to cm;

Basic 4 Maths operations with fractions and decimals;

Reading large numbers and are not comfortable with the math operations;

Changing of fractions to decimals and vice versa;

Interpretation and understanding of Venn diagrams; and

Statistics: Interpretation of tables and graphs

Ladies and gentlemen, while conducting a preliminary research with the teachers from some selected schools, many HODs raised their concerns that students are not able to perform well in Mathematics. One of the reasons they give is that students do not know their basics from Primary Schools. Shifting the blame or burden helps no one. However, when the problems are put into perspective and logical thinking administered towards it, then only will refined solutions come on board. We need to change our focus.

Reflect on the past teaching pedagogies in Maths and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses. Similarly, there has to be a methodised injection of contemporary pedagogies to teaching and learning of Maths.

I, as such find the theme of this workshop: Reinventing Pedagogies for Improved Outcome in Mathematics, highly fitting to the teaching and learning of Mathematics to the current blend of students; re-inventing pedagogies through research, partnerships, collaborative trainings and its orchestration.

Ladies and gentlemen, last month, during the Education Conference, I reminded all that teaching and learning in this era has to change and move away from age old practices. The methodologies and strategies in education have to be aligned to the demands of students of this era. Injection of technology, usage of varied teaching strategies, new resources, upgraded curriculum and apt teachers are just some.

Zeroing on subject matter delivery is extremely vital now and it is no surprise that delivery of content has to be strategised and put in line with the needs of the current mix of students. Meaning, we cannot be rooted to same practices of teaching Maths in the current time. Maths is an activity based subject and it cannot be dished out to students through talk and chalk only. The more they do, the more they learn.

Ladies and gentlemen, re-inventing teaching pedagogies need genuine initiation and the dedication to move away from past trends. The intellect and training paradigm of this is certainly attained through the teachers’ professional training, but it is the situational response to the mathematics needs of individual students that builds the new day teaching pedagogies. We need more dynamic components of teaching Maths to our children. Once the processes or ideas of teaching becomes polished and re-furbished, the outcome will be children who understand the workings of Mathematics and which they can use to get better results and lifelong usage.

 

Ladies and gentlemen, I intend to take this opportunity to briefly talk about a few modern day teaching  pedagogies which are set to increase improved outcome.

  1. Build a ‘mathematics culture’ in the classroom: Teachers need to ensure that their classrooms have a strong mathematics focus. The climate inside the classroom must be created to consistently challenge students to learn Maths;
  2. Make Maths available to students: Constantly challenge students with new and fresh tasks and rotate tasks regularly. Regular worksheets and activities generate greater interest from students. Ensure that Maths equipment is available such as, stationery, working sheets and other resources;
  3. Effective Maths teachers provide students with opportunities to work both independently and collaboratively to make sense of ideas. Varied working strategies keep the ‘boring’ factor at bay. Give the children the freedom to discuss in whole class and in partners or groups and where necessary work on their own. Any standardised procedural discussion technique used over and over makes things stagnant and students quickly lose interest;
  4. Effective Maths teachers plan mathematics learning experiences that enable students to build on their pre-existing proficiencies, interests, and knowledge. Teachers can use examples from children to make students understand the concepts taught. For example, the concept of division or fraction can easily be related to the concept of sharing a cake at home. This pedagogy also relates to ensuring that selected students such as, low achievers existing knowledge is used to build the base of their learning rather than letting a big gap operate in their existing knowledge of maths and the new concepts being taught. For example, simplifying a question into different parts for the low achievers;
  5. Effective Maths teachers use a range of assessment practices to make students’ thinking visible and to support students’ learning. This is perhaps an extremely important factor affecting teaching and learning in this era. Teachers must use a wide range of formal and informal assessments to monitor and diagnose learning issues. The assessments must probe the understanding level of students and give the teacher the important feedback on the ability of the child.

Strategies such as teacher questioning, giving effective feedback, peer assessment and self-assessment are highly relevant in class;

  1. Effective Maths teachers are patient with students. They understand that student’s needs are different and as such they are ready to go out of their way to help the child. Extra attention to low achiever. Teachers need to be dedicated to uplift the knowledge base of the child and not lower their self-esteem by signalling them out; and
  2. Effective teachers take over board vital stakeholders of teaching and learning Maths. One of them is the parents.

Reach out to the parents and see how they can contribute to their child learning Maths. Give out activities such as learning multiplication table for parents to monitor and no doubt positive results will be attained.

Ladies and gentlemen, any major innovation and genuine reform require aligning the efforts of all those involved in students’ mathematical development: teachers, Principals, teacher educators, researchers, parents, expert support services, school boards, policy makers, and the students themselves. It is vital, therefore, that we understand what effective mathematics teaching looks like—and what teachers can do to break this pattern. Hence, I am glad that you have taken over this initiative and especially something which is going to support our children’s learning. Thank you. Vinaka vaka levu and danyavaad

Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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