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Teaching History in Vietnam

            Uncle Ho said: "Our people must know our history to be fully aware of the origin of Vietnam", indicating that a full understanding of one's country is crucial. However, evidence shows that many Vietnamese nowadays undervalue the importance of Historical knowledge. Although teaching and learning history does not grab a headline as frequently as many other social issues do, it is by no means less serious. It is the goal of this essay to outline some reasons for ineffective History teaching as well as suggest certain appropriate ways to address it.
             The inappropriate program is widely recognized as the primary reason. When interviewed, most students say they do not see the point of remembering so many dates and events. A press report claimed that in the 2014 national graduation examinations, where students could pick one out of four subjects to do a obligatory test, there was only one student who picked history out of 600 students at Quang Trung Highschool in Hanoi. In many other schools, no students at all chose history. Statistics from the Ministry of Education and Training and different Institutions shows that history has the lowest percentage of students scoring above average marks. Among 107,000 History paper recorded in the 2007 University entrance exams, there were only 9.23% scored above 5, whilst 21.3% scored 0.5 or 0. Mr. Duong Trung Quoc, who is considered a leading historian in the country, in a talk show, said that the content of the textbook contained unnecessary details but was still insufficient. For example, our victories and the way we depicted our enemies in each are repeated in different battles without a specific story to differentiate. In addition, the method of teaching history is considered archaic and does not stimulate the students. There is little interaction in the classroom and the students just jot down what is read by the teacher. "Instead of stimulating the historical thinking, teacher are just trying to make them memorize as much as possible".

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