Teacher’s Touch: A major missing in real classrooms
“You don’t have to be positive all the time. Feeling sad, angry, annoyed, frustrated, scared, and anxious is perfectly okay. Having feelings doesn’t make you a negative person. It makes you human.” — Lori Deschene.
This quote needs to be accepted in our classrooms by the stakeholders of the education sector. Teaching-learning process during the global pandemic has amplified mental issues. Post-pandemic, everything is getting normalized; however, our students are still struggling to cope with the academic and co-scholastic gaps they have experienced over the pandemic years. This struggle of learners needs immediate and active attention from educators as students are building up a lot of stress and anxiety and succumbing to performance pressure, thereby making themselves victims of bad mental health.
We as educators need to look out for factors and symptoms that indicate early signs- e.g., truancy, failure to make timely submissions, lower grades than expectations, changes in behavior, mood swings, and physical signs such as cuts to wrists or low energy. The teachers need to note changes in the pattern, seek assistance, and put the student in touch with someone qualified and able to help them immediately. The school counselors can be of great help. As educators, we shouldn’t hesitate to take this leap as it is quintessential for our learners’ mental health.
Also, a significant share of responsibility lies on the shoulders of educators as the school is a second home for them, and they spend a good chunk of time inside the school premises. As educators, we need to accept that each learner learns and performs at a different pace, and the teachers should accept this fact. A child’s academic performance shouldn’t become a parameter of acceptance of the learner by the educator.
– Teachers must foster feelings of safety and security by interacting and developing positive relationships with each student.
– We should imbibe trust in them so that they can express their heart to us so that helping them in times of crisis becomes easy for us.
– Encourage play and sports to promote interaction.
– Seek suggestions from students to create a welcoming and safe atmosphere for them. – Model good coping behaviors for students by being calm-composed and sensitive towards learners.
– Open communication with honesty and without being judgmental helps to open conversations with the students and know if they are in trouble.
– Sessions for parents on the significance of mental health are also vital, as parenting plays a significant role in fostering good mental health
– Teachers also must take care of their physical and mental health.
Following the above steps, a teacher can ensure healthy teaching and learning processing in our real classrooms and foster a sense of trust among students. A teacher’s touch – It’s what creates leaders!
TRIBUTE TO MR PETER FANTHOME SENIOR
It is with deepest sorrow to inform the August House of the passing of Mr. Peter Fanthome Senior. A stalwart of the Educational Fraternity, Mr Fanthome’s stature was larger than life for the Anglo-Indian Schools and community at large. Born as Peter Fanthome to Inez and Hubert Fanthome in Fatehpur, Uttar Pradesh in 1953. He studied in Goethels Memorial School Darjeeling, after doing his Teachers Training Course he joined as a Teacher at St. Francis College. Thereafter he took over as the Principal of St. Teresa’s School, Model House, founded by his parents and run by his mother after the demise of his mother of St. Teresa’s in 1982. He went on to be the Founder of the St. Teresa’s College at Ashiana. A minority institution, the Foundation Stone was laid by the erstwhile Chief Minister, Ms. Mayawati in 1997 and was affiliated to the Council for the Indian School Certificate in 1999. Today a full-fledged senior secondary School, St.Teresa’s imparts education to children across borders of religion caste or creed. In 2016 he established St. Teresa’s Day School for the rural masses in Itaunja, Uttar Pradesh.
Mr. Fanthome was Member of the legislative assembly Uttaar Pradesh 13th,14th and 16th Vidhan Sabha an UP 1997-2007 and 2012 Vidhan Sabha. He was the Chairman of the Inter State Board for the Anglo-Indian education, New Delhi, Member, Council for the Indian school certificate as a member of the standing committee of Exams and an inspector as well & was also a member of UP Masihi Sangathan. Mr. Fanthome was the President of the Association of Heads of Anglo Indian schools, UP, Jesus and Mary School, Balrampur, UP, Dorothy Crosswaite Homes Trust, Lucknow, UP, All India Anglo Association, Lucknow Branch and Board of Governers for both La Martiniere boys and Girls Colleges amongst others and member of Governing body of All india Anglo Indian Association, new Delhi and Hilton’s School, Dehradun and others.
The list is endless. Mr. Fanthome’s achievements in and of themselves are astounding to say the least. He was a truly accomplished man and has left behind him a legacy to take forward. His devotion to the cause of education was perhaps in his DNA and was always ready to lend a helping hand to his colleagues and those associated with education. His philanthropic ways were legendary. You will be greatly missed as an icon of the Education world pan-India.
Lessons from Ancient Indian Education System
“Education is the process by which character is formed, strength of mind is increased, and intellect is sharpened, as a result of which one can stand on one’s own feet” – Swami Vivekanand
The hard rock foundation of education affirms the steadfastness of building of the nation. Education system of a society is the framework of the young minds. Education encompasses all the skills which make the learners capable of discovery through three I’s:- Inquisitiveness Imagination and Innovation. As Kautilya held- “Education is the strongest weapon of the cultured and civilized world, which ensures Prosperity of a Nation”.
India has a rich legacy of learning and education. Students from across the world come to study here. The Ancient education system of Gurukuls imparted education on all essential fields of learning like languages, Science, Mathematics, Arts, Sports, Crafts, Yoga, Meditation etc. through group discussions, self and team learning in natural environment. All this helped in holistic development of a child.
Unfortunately, the English Colonial rulers brought in a change in Indian system of education in 1835 which eventually led to generations of book worms.
During my teaching span of twenty-five years; teaching students at school as well as post graduate level, I feel an urgent need to learn from the glorious past of Indian education system and consider the following:
We as Teachers must consider balancing the conceptual knowledge with the 21st century Life skills so that future generations do not become vulnerable to outside world’s cultural subjugation.
Education is evolution.
Education is revolution.
Education is the only solution……..
1. As a school teacher, what is your understanding of quality education?
Ans-Quality Education means each and every child will able to get the knowledge that we are giving. He/she must be equipped with resources and modern technology required for understanding the concepts in clearly.
2. What according to you are the three most important aspects of quality
Ans- According to me the most important aspects of quality education are –
i) Understand each child’s mindset and requirements in order to give them good quality education that helps the child in exploring future avenues.
ii) As per our education system, it should be child centered and child must get full satisfaction in getting the education and improve his/ her learning capability.
iii) The faculty and resource persons must have sufficient knowledge about their subject and deliver them in the most efficient way through learning and skill-based learning.
3. What kind of learning environment can lead to inclusivity and equitability of education?
Ans- Each and every child must get the skill based learning method. Also, most effective and attractive, hippies learning method must be included to bring the quality and learning environment in education system. The children belonging to remote areas, poor areas have right to seek quality education. From the teachers’ point of view all children must get an equal treatment.
4. What are the best practices adopted in your school to import quality education to all the students?
Ans- Our school provides the best teachers ad resources that equip students to perform different activities to their full potential. In addition to skilled and practical based knowledge, our school also provides education related to theory based and technology-based knowledge. The students are getting fully satisfied and are enjoying their learning experience.
Dwarka International School is an English medium co-educational recognized Senior Secondary School under the aegis of registered Radiant Educational Society. Built on a sprawling campus, the school offers a pollution free environment far away from the maddening crowd of the city life. Started in April 2006, the school is today synonymous with quality education and learning beyond classroom.
Teachers apply the latest techniques of imparting quality education by using latest educational modules on the smart boards in each and every classroom for effective curriculum transaction.
The school believes in experiential education wherein the child is engaged actively in the learning process. The educators facilitate learning and provide experiences to the students by exposing them to co-curricular domain as cultural and sports activities in the two capacious auditoriums and airy grounds. The state of art libraries and the computer labs are places wherein students explore the world. The music and dance rooms, art and activity rooms lead students to creativity and innovation. The Science Labs quench the thirst of knowledge and inquisitiveness.
DIS comprises a team of skilled and experienced educators led by an able Vice Chairperson Ms. Sangeeta Choudhary and the proficient Ms. Shalini Agarwal, the Principal. A very promising squad, the school has been instrumental in producing worthy and responsible citizens of the nation.
Associating myself with Dwarka International School is a matter of pride and privilege. We are a family of more than 2000 students, around 100 teaching faculty and other non-academic staff. A very organized and coherent system is at the core of teaching learning process which binds the parents and other partners with the school. Education in the school is accomplished not only within the classroom but also beyond the precincts of the classroom, hence abiding by the philosophy of “Learning beyond Classroom” which is the school motto.
The school strives to nurture its students with love, care, and affection and in its attempt to chisel their innate skills provides them a platform to perform and excel. It instills in the student essential life skills as critical thinking, leadership, problem solving, effective communication, time management and team coordination with giving due respect to values as compassion, honesty, empathy, and forgiveness.
Trust you are in good health. We welcome you to the first edition of Edlines Today for 2023. In this edition, we have illustrious contributors from Delhi, Haryana and Varanasi. Starting with our Principal’s desk column, Dr. Puja Waalia Mann from Pratap Public School, Karnal make us revisit the importance of the ancient Indian educational system and how strong deep-rooted the values are. It is equally important to teach students about ethics, mutual respect and emotional quotient along with the core curriculum.
This edition features Dwarka International School, Delhi in our Big-League Institutions. The school strives to provide an interdisciplinary approach to students and promotes learning beyond classrooms. The sprawling infrastructure includes state-of-the-art libraries, auditoriums, sports grounds. The school’s principal, Ms. Shalini Srivastava leaves no stone unturned to create an enjoyable educational experience for students through the school’s motto of learning beyond classrooms.
Next, Mrs. Vidya Choubey from M.P. Memorial School in Varanasi speaks to us in the Rendezvous segment about the importance of quality education and how that can be achieved for every student in the country. Inclusivity and access to resources are very important factors to achieve quality education for all students including the ones from unprivileged backgrounds.
The Voice of Educator section by Ms. Gurmeet Kaur, Primary English teacher at Prudence School, Dwarka sheds light on the need for teachers to identify any behavioral changes in students during their learning journey. Teachers are not just responsible for imparting knowledge to students in the classroom, but also have a huge role to play in shaping a child’s behavior. Imbibing trust in student, encouraging student interaction, participation in co-curricular activities are ways in which teachers can aim to provide wholesome education and not just bookish knowledge
Finally, this edition’s Educator of the Month column is very special and close to our heart. This section is a tribute to Late Mr. Peter Fanthome Sr, an educationalist and politician. His contribution to the Indian politics and education industry has been meritorious. He was a truly accomplished man and has left behind him a legacy to take forward. We miss him deeply and may his soul rest in peace.
May this edition be an enriching read for you!
The Only Way to Teach!
In the last two Blogs we have dealt with the What is? and the How? As well as the Traditional vs Competency. Let us now turn our attention to the Benefits of one of the most powerful pedagogical styles of transacting education in the classroom. The benefits of Competency-Based Education for today’s learners.
We know competency-based learning is a self-directed and self-paced student-centred approach. We also have been told that this is the best pedagogy to go by in every classroom. CBE mainly determines application of and final achievement of content, skills and abilities, hence it is beneficial for learners/students and teaching institutions. Thus, leading students to be able to achieve mastery over the content taught while allowing teaching institutions to achieve their long-term goals of making their students 21st century learners equipped to deal with all real-world scenarios.
We have been told this over and over again.
So having said that, let us now talk in some detail of the benefits of CBE to the learner of today. We can break it down further under these headings.
CBE is a personalized way of teaching, where the student and teacher work on a one on one basis, thus ensuring, that students work at their own pace. Further to this is the flexibility of time and place it affords the learner to conduct their learning. This would then mean the student does not have to wait for onsite instructions from the physically present teacher to impart learning, and the student can avail of the online platform which had become a necessity during the Covid pandemic; and has now become an integral part of all classroom teaching, where they can reach out to their teachers with any difficulties they may face or may encounter along their learning path. This in turn will ensure that all learning becomes purpose-driven so as to enhance student experiences.
Thus, allowing for different teaching strategies to welcome non-traditional learners. Making it a more skill-based training program that ensures quality over content. This will take us a step further in the right direction – A ticket to gain real-world experience – confidently and with aplomb.
Competency-based education programs will subsequently produce more competent student graduates who have gained mastery in all subjects rather than in only one sphere of their education. It also means that by the time they are ready to face the outside world, they are job-ready.
Timely support, feedback and assessments to the student then becomes the need of the hour. Assessments, that are based on different learning patterns of the student, and feedback, must be regular, continuous and on-going. As mentioned, assessments and grading which are novel in their approach and manner, keeping in mind the individual learning styles and abilities of the student are a must. An approach one cannot overlook or dismiss or even put on the backburner of the learning curve.
Our next port of call is affordability</strong . A minor benefit but an important one nonetheless. Taking affordability onboard basically means helping students heading out for higher career paths in education, to be confident in their areas of competency quickly when the need to showcase their ability in the outside world arises. Thus, saving time and money.
Competency-based education can also push students to be more mindful of their productivity levels. Students may work to finish their studies faster than the recommended period to gain said benefits.
In summarise – the Benefits of competency-based education can be listed as under: