It has been more than a year since education moved online and it continues to be the primary means of transacting teaching and learning even today. This sudden and forcible shift has been anything but easy for students and teachers. We have heard from every stakeholder about the challenges, shortcomings and other difficulties involving online education; of how teachers and students are looking forward to sharing the same physical space of a classroom again. And as we hope to rejoin our teachers and students soon, Teacher Plus decided to find out if teachers have learnt any lessons from their online teaching experience that they would like to take back to their brick and mortar classrooms.
The National Educational Policy 2020 has come like a breath of fresh air with its shift towards being more flexible and giving more choices and chances to students. By advocating a vocational and practical approach to learning, the NEP may well give a thumbs up to the home science course because of its multidisciplinary influences. However, in practice, till now the subject has suffered because of the way it has been taught. It is time for home science to upgrade, raise the bar and deliver greater value to students, its practitioners and its academics.
Oh god is the virus raising its head again? Will I get a job tomorrow? Am I too fat? Will I pass the exam? What am I doing in life? Anxieties seem to be the order of the day – both real and imagined. Even everyday living seems like a herculean task. Under these circumstances what we need is a powerful weapon to help us deal with our problems, education can become that tool. Not only does education help us seek knowledge and gain information, but more importantly it can help us understand ourselves and give us the skills to live complete and full lives.
A dominating aspect of online school education post-Covid-19 is the lingering conflict between parents and managements over the existing school fee structure and very often it is the teachers who are seen mediating among the stubborn stakeholders.
Waste disposal and its management have become a humungous problem that cannot be ignored by anyone anymore. While some of us are still processing this fact, many schools across the country have got into action to tackle this problem. Children in these schools are doing such wonderful work with waste that they are changing the definition of what waste is.
Time management is a strategy that we all are constantly learning and improvising. Sometimes we are able to stick to time and complete tasks, and sometimes we tend to procrastinate. In actuality however, the more time we have, the more we delay. The pandemic too has been a testing time for all of us, more so, teachers and students. For teachers, managing housework and teaching online has been a tough ride and for students, with a whole lot of distractions, staying focused can be hard. Teacher Plus spoke to a few teachers to find out how they are managing and how they are trying to stop students from procrastinating.
A close look at the history of education will tell us that amidst all the different thinkers, systems, ideas and practices that evolved over the decades, the one thing that remained constant is change. From a gurukul system of education to mass learning during the Industrial Revolution, to inclusive education in a cognizant society, to multiple intellingences in a society that celebrated differences and now self directed learning in a society sensitive to individual needs, education is constantly adapting to serve the needs of a dynamic society.
How can the contents of a course be made relevant to students? Can education foster students’ choice and voice? By seeking knowledge from our surroundings, can learning be made pertinent? Ultimately, all learning must have some utility value so that students understand the relevance of what they are learning.
As schools shut down amidst the heat of the pandemic and classes moved online, students and teachers became aware of a new reality–if learning was to be achieved, students would have to become more responsible, purposeful and disciplined. This awareness led to questions about choice, freedom, responsibility and integrity. Questions about how to let go of our students’ hands so that they can walk on their own, how to trust our students, how to break down the existing structure and build something new. Have these questions crossed your mind? Have you found any answers?
How will learning and education be in the coming days, especially against the backdrop of Covid 19? While imagining such a situation, the author questions some of the assumptions of the education structure. He asks: What if every child, every student is thoroughly capable of ascertaining what he or she wishes to learn, what if every child can extract learning from anything and everything he or she touches, sees or feels? What if a child can learn at various levels and all of that was acceptable? In trying to expand on these questions, he lists four facets of education of the future.