Women’s empowerment

Women’s empowermentWomen’s empowerment is the process in which women elaborate and recreate what it is to be in a circumstance that they previously were denied. Empowerment can be defined in many ways, however, when talking about women’s empowerment, empowerment means accepting and allowing people (women) who are on the outside of the decision-making process into it. “This puts a strong emphasis on participation in political structures and formal decision-making and, in the economic sphere, on the ability to obtain an income that enables participation in economic decision-making.” Empowerment is the process that creates power in individuals over their own lives, society, and in their communities. People are empowered when they are able to access the opportunities available to them without limitations and restrictions such as in education, profession and lifestyle. Feeling entitled to make your own decisions creates a sense of empowerment. Empowerment includes the action of raising the status of women through education, raising awareness, literacy, and training. Women’s empowerment is all about equipping and allowing women to make life-determining decisions through the different problems in society.

Alternatively, it is the process for women to redefine gender roles that allows for them to acquire the ability to choose between known alternatives whom have otherwise been restricted from such an ability. There are several principles defining women’s empowerment such as, for one to be empowered, they must come from a position of disempowerment. Furthermore, one must acquire empowerment themselves rather than have it given to them by an external party. Other studies have found that empowerment definitions entail people having the capability to make important decisions in their lives while also being able to act on them. Lastly, empowerment and disempowerment is relative to other at a previous time; therefore, empowerment is a process, not a product.

Women empowerment has become a significant topic of discussion in development and economics. It can also point to the approaches regarding other trivialized genders in a particular political or social context.

Women’s economic empowerment refers to the ability for women to enjoy their right to control and benefit from the resources, assets, income and their own time, as well as the ability to manage risk and improve their economic status and well being.

The role of background knowledge in education

images (9)Background knowledge, in other words, is a glue that sticks information and learning together. Believe it or not, when you have prior knowledge about a topic, you understand it better when you start reading about it. It plays an important role in a student’s life, reading comprehension especially in the school. If students don’t have enough related knowledge, they’ll probably face difficulties in understanding the text.

What could possibly happen when there is a lack of background knowledge about something? Below are some of the situations that you might relate to.

  • When new ideas and experiences appear, it will be difficult to make sense of what the author is trying to convey.
  • While reading, it will be difficult to proceed and understand further information without background knowledge.
  • It also leads to an inability to summarize what one has read.

Well, you might think of how one can have prior knowledge about everything.

Of course, that is hardly possible. However, we can involve ourselves in many activities and at least have vague knowledge about almost everything. I am sure, a question mark on “How”, is still going on in your mind. Well, there are arguably four types of background knowledge that needs to be instilled in students from their very early age and they are:

1. Knowledge of the world:

It is essential for normal language understanding. The construction of meaning in the mind depends on the reader’s knowledge of the language, subject and broad-based background. From this statement, firstly it’s clear that reading is an excellent source of knowledge which not only increases word-meaning but also facilitates reading comprehension. Secondly, the more they interact with the world around them, directly or indirectly, it helps children develop their knowledge of the world. Because then they can relate general background knowledge about everyday life with the context.

2. Vocabulary knowledge:

As stated above, reading, being the best source for any knowledge, it also is a key to develop vocabulary knowledge. The more you read, the more you learn different words and their usage. This apart, the other way to develop vocabulary knowledge is to travel and interact with different people, get involved in socializing. The conversations can be a great way to learn better.

3. Concept knowledge:

Activating prior knowledge can also happen through conceptual understanding. Giving hands-on or direct experiences is a great source for understanding concepts while reading. In other words, it takes students away from the classroom settings and brings the world to them. Discussions and brainstorming are also helpful in developing concept knowledge. This will help gather a variety of views and information about the world.

4. Biblical knowledge:

Having background knowledge about the Bible is not about learning what a bible itself. Biblical knowledge gives an experience of a journey, wherein at first you might feel it as just a journey. However, once you arrive, you feel the difference from where you have started. The geographical setting, history of Israel and the ancient Near East, political movements, religious and cultural environment of the biblical world, all contribute to a whole lot of information that you might not learn even in the school. Even the languages here make a huge difference in understanding the passage. In fact, not only in the Bible, you pick any holy book, and it is filled with a whole lot of information which is deep in meaning and filled with knowledge.

For this to happen, parents play a key role in providing enough prior knowledge to a student. Because a kid’s education starts at home and their parents are their first teachers. Thus, it is important for parents and their kids to learn together at home.

On the other hand, teachers play the next important role in a child’s learning. It is essential for teachers to assess and understand what the students already know about a topic. According to an expert educational researcher “What students already know about the content is one of the strongest indicators of how well they will learn new information relative to the content”. Teachers can engage students in activities, which will not only help understand their prior knowledge but also generate curiosity in them to learn and connect with the content. Once the insights are gathered, it is easier to create target specific learning sessions for the students, which textbooks simply cannot do.