Learning to learn together

Sumita Sarkar

all-together Crowded classroomses, learning for marks, low motivation among students and falling attendance in my class made me sit up and reflect. I am a teacher at Pearl Academy of Fashion in Delhi. I have chosen to be a teacher instead of a practicing graphic designer because I love teaching and I think I am a good teacher. But facing a half empty classroom indicates problems. Could I do anything to improve the situation?

While I initially blamed the management (for taking in too many students) and the students (for their lack of interest and motivation), all along I knew as the teacher I had a large role to play. How could I motivate the students to learn deeply? I needed to change my teaching method so that students got more involved in learning and produced better work. At the same time, for me, it was a challenge, and it was important to develop critical, creative, and independent thinking abilities in the students, because these are essential abilities in a professional designer.

The author is Head, Communication Design Department at the Pearl Academy of Fashion, New Delhi. She teaches typography to undergraduate students. She welcomes interaction on peer learning and creativity. She can be reached at sumitasarkar@yahoo.com.

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