Educators push for innovative learning than burdensome homework

From No school bag policy to teachers’ blogs to less cumbersome school work, experts want school learning to be interactive, reports Shivangi Mishra

New Delhi Dec 5: The present approach towards education in our country is very authoritative and pushing that only promotes rote learning and senseless competition, says Shayama Chona educationist and former principal of DPS R K Puram, New Delhi.Welcoming the no-homework policy, she stressed at no school bag policy for the tiny tots as well. “In order to reform the education system, we need to have better teacher training, better parenting and letting children enjoy their childhood,” she adds.

“Instead of structured homework that burdens students with writing and copying to fill up notebooks, there needs to be a homework that is fun and interactive for the students. The child learns the most from what he sees and listens,” says Chona. She adds that making classes fun and engaging doesn’t necessarily mean having smartclasses and tabs in place. “If the school is fulfilling for the child and invokes curiosity rather than enforcing rote learning, he will return to it joyfully,” she says.

Sharing her views on the guideline, Hyderabad-based student-counsellor Pragati Pandey says, “Children should definitely not be burdened with homework. However, as a trained psychologist I can say that less homework policy is better than a no homework policy. Class I and II students are not cognitively developed to retain things without revision. They need a structure that surely doesn’t overburden them but provide them with a system that helps them not lose track of what is happening in the classrooms.” She agrees that there needs to be better teacher training that can empower teachers with information and technology skills to make lessons more interactive. “For example, there can be a class blog that the parents have access to and they can see what happened throughout the day. Today, every family has access to smartphones so teachers can share informative videos and learning games that in fact makes learning enjoyable for the young students.”

Schools need to take advantage of the several outreach programmes run by MNCs as part of their CSR initiatives under which they provide free training to the teachers on new pedagogies and even provide infrastructural support, she adds. For government-run school students, the rate of homework completion by Class I and II students was already low as most of the parents are under-educated and cannot help their wards with the homework, says Rakhi Tyagi, a Noida-based government school teacher.

“So, we already have been following a no homework rule and have partnered with several NGOs to make education fun for students,” says Tyagi, adding that homework can’t still be done away with as students do require some sort of revision.

(TOI Education Times 0