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Dr. Mary Wong Siew Lian Jabatan PIPK IPG KBL

Religious Perspectives

Biological Perspectives
Importance to teachers Implications for teachers

What is meant by Nature of Man?

Kamus Dewan (1998): FITRAH is an Arabic word referring to the natural characteristics, talents, and religious beliefs of man Nature of man (fitrah manusia) can be said to refer to the characteristics, natural talents or potentials and religious beliefs a person has

Britannica Concise Encyclopedia: Fundamental dispositions and traits of humans Theories about the nature of humankind form a part of every culture: - In the West, debate has traditionally centered on whether humans are selfish and competitive (see Thomas Hobbes; John Locke) or social and altruistic (putting others before self) (Karl Marx, mile Durkheim)

Recent research in genetics, evolutionary biology, and cultural anthropology suggests that humans may be both, and that there is a complex interaction between genetically inherited factors ("nature") and developmental and social factors ("nurture") Basic drives shared with other primates include food, sex, security, play, and social status

RELIGIOUS PERSPECTIVES Definition for the nature of man varies with religious beliefs: Christian Islam Buddha Hindu

How do the definitions differ?


According to the biological view, the nature of man is influenced by two important aspects: (i) Growth (ii) Development

Growth and development include physical, cognitive, emotional and social aspects
Psychologists believe that nature and nurture are important factors that bring about differences in the growth and development of man

Nature (genetic composition) cause individual differences in the following aspects: - Cognition - Physical features - Emotions

Environmental factors that contribute to individual differences are: family background, home environment peer influence cultural and societal beliefs technology teachers and school religious beliefs

Man should optimize the potentials he has in order to have a good life
These potentials include: intellect spiritual aspects emotions ability to socialize physical aspects

The role of teachers: Develop the potential in students

Education provides the opportunity for developing the potentials in each student Effective learning environments influence the ability of students to understand and respond during the teaching-learning process

The role of the teacher is to help children explore the hidden potentials in themselves Characteristics such as curiosity, openness, creativity, and ability to solve problems should be optimized and improved upon Teachers should help children be aware of and develop their abilities and potentials through suitable t-l activities

A teacher who knows and understands human development will be able to prepare suitable cognitive t-l activities to develop the potentials in children Example: Year 1 Mathematics t-l activities that include the use of concrete objects in teaching counting will help develop the childs ability to think logically The teacher can also help develop childrens emotions and talents through suitable co-curriculum activities in school

Through understanding the nature of man, the teacher will understand that each child has characteristics and talents that are special and different from that of other children

Students also have different personality in terms of ability to communicate and efficiency in doing learning tasks
This knowledge and understanding concerning students can be applied in planning and carrying out t-l activities in the classroom

It can also help teachers in preparing suitable teaching aids and set induction in order to have more effective t-l
Teachers can prepare activities based on students intelligence (MI, IQ, EQ), interests and natural tendencies Teachers need to motivate students to take an active part in the learning process by creating suitable learning environments through including games, competitions and other fun activities

Knowledge of human nature will also help the teacher to guide children in the development of their physical abilities and potentials Teachers should provide opportunities for students to develop their psychomotor skills through suitable physical activities such as sports and games


Teachers should acquire knowledge about child development Identify the potentials in each child Use suitable strategies to develop childrens potentials Give motivation to students to explore their own potentials