Transforming classrooms as centres of joy
Education is the manifestation of the perfection already in the manThis remark of Swami Vivekananda portrays the true nature of education But todays...
“Education is the manifestation of the perfection already in the man"-This remark of Swami Vivekananda portrays the true nature of education. But today's education is lacking that quality and promoting the lopsided development. The contemporary educational process is nomadic around the syllabus and its completion instead of the knowledge construction. Though the governments are dumping lion’s share of funds on education the revelation of the surveys conducted by various agencies is gloomy on learning outcomes.
The authorities are clueless about this unchanged situation and designing various programmes but in vain. It is very disheartening to absorb that though the teachers are well trained the results are same in both public and private institutions. This cadaverous situation is making the whole system to receive brickbats from the policymakers. We are aware of that the in the process of education to achieve the objectives the teachers should have to provide purposeful experiences according to Edgar Dale. Though the Kothari Commission (1964-66) has considered the classrooms are the "Temples for the destiny of the county" but they haven't proved yet after seven decades of Independence.
It is obvious that though many committees have expressed their displeasure about the relevance of the existing education system the successive governments are failed to focus on the lacunae. It is well-known fact that our education system laid its emphasis on the learning of concepts instead to capacitate to learn. In the classrooms, there is an only one-way process in which teacher is active and imparting the concepts to the taught and making more passive. This makes the students as mere reproducers of the information than producers.
The teachers that are well versed with Thorndike's learning psychology theories aren't able to apply the same in reality because they have run after the task of syllabus completion. This situation should have to be changed and teachers have to enjoy their space in teaching with the help of activities. It is a pressing need at this juncture students should not be fed up with concepts and information which will realize the remark of Swami Vivekananda "If education is identical with information, the libraries are greatest sages in the world and encyclopedias are rishis. "
In the words of Swami Vivekananda "We want that education by which character is formed, the strength of mind is increased, and the intellect is expanded and by which one can stand on one's own feet". But due to policy paralysis, the education system miserably failed to offer such education to our young generations. The education system of our country has satisfied only the thirst of conceptual knowledge of some classes and yet to reach the underprivileged for their empowerment. It is evident that the education has failed to generate the character having, mentally strong, intellect and empathetic.
It is perceptible that according to International Journal of Psychology and Behavioural sciences survey 63.5% of the students reported under stress due to academic pressure irrespective of their gender, age, and grade. About 66% of the students are reported feeling pressure from parents for better academic performance. About 32.6% of the students were symptomatic to the Psychiatric disorders and 81.6% of the students are reported with examination related anxiety. These figures reflect that our education system is not for preparing for the life and contradicting the remark of John Dewey "Education is not preparation for life education itself life". The parent tribe has forgotten the need and necessity of good parenting and for their social elevation pressurizing their wards to join the curses against their wishes. If this trend continues then our future citizens will become more mentally and physically fragile and the nation suffers a lot.
So, to receive a healthy student tribe and future workforce we need to bring more changes to transform the classrooms as the centres of joyful learning. According to the neuroscience of the joyful learning" When we scrub the joy and comfort from the classroom, we distance our students from effective information processing". When the classroom isn't able to provide the pleasure of learning the students become more bored, anxious and passively engaged. The Neuroimaging studies and measurement of brain chemical transmitters reveals that student's comforts level can influence the information processing and long-term memory (Thanos et al 1999).
So, it is an extreme need to make the classroom more interesting, student-friendly and welcoming to the seekers of education. It is an appreciable thing that Andhra Pradesh has become a forerunner in this aspect by introducing "Ananda Lahari" (ALA) at primary level for joyful learning. It was so right according to Swami Vivekananda "You cannot teach a child any more than you can grow a plant. All you can do is on the negative side—you can only help. It is a manifestation from within; it develops its own nature—you can only take away obstructions"
"The education which does not help the common mass of people to equip themselves for the struggle for life, which does not bring out the strength of character, a spirit of philanthropy, and the courage of a lion— is it worth of the name? Real education is that which enables one to stand on one's own legs" This remark of Swami Vivekananda has profoundly laid its emphasis on the man making not on money-making. Further, today the education has failed to make the students as confident and promoting the clouds of uncertainty and provoking them to kill themselves irrespective of their course nature.
So, to stop all these we need to bring certain changes that will make our student tribe as more confident and more productive in academic performance. After fathoming the reasons for the Low Learning Achievement it is found that the low education of the parents of the students, the rigidity of the teaching community, unattractive classroom nature, examination pattern, less reading time, low comprehension, due to stress are the reasons.
To surmount all these probable reasons the governments should have to think about bringing changes such as one session teaching and the other for study hours, exposing the teachers tribe to child learning psychology, transforming the classroom more attractive with child friendly environment, reducing the examination burden, subject expert meetings for doubt clarification, execution of counseling classes for the students to relieve them from stress and to guide them about the career opportunities to hit the roof.
No one should forget this valuable suggestion of Swami Vivekananda" The ideal of all education, all training, should be this man-making. But, instead of that, we are always trying to polish up the outside. What use in polishing up the outside when there is no inside? The end and aim of all training are to make the man grow".