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‘Focus should be on conceptual education rather than cramming’

By HT School,

Pedagogy has changed a lot since the inception of digital technology.

I inspire my students to be not only good teachers but also educationists and academicians, writes principal Neelima Jain.

The structure of our education system, especially exams is such that students are impelled to focus more on cramming than conceptual learning. Addressing this issue, Neelima Jain, Principal of the Modern School, Sector 17, Faridabad, Noida, shares her views with HT School about how the focus should shift from exam-oriented teaching-learning methods to conceptual education at large.

‘In these political volatile times, should students be insulated from political upheavals? How do you inform / educate them about the changing scenario?

“Role of youth in Politics”– has been a debatable issue for years. Of course, the seeds of leadership are sown and cultivated at very young age and schools play a very important role in developing this ability but I personally feel that schools, I mean – the children up to the age of 18 years – should be kept away from the politics. They should be given basic fair knowledge of political set-up in the country and world as well but there should not be any interference of party and politics in the schools.

How do you motivate children to be “Green Citizens?

We at Modern School are the true ambassadors of “Green Faridabad” Campaign. Our students are truly Green Citizens who plant saplings and organise rallies to create awareness among the masses regarding environment. We also organize exhibitions, seminars and quiz shows on the burning issues of environmental pollution.

Our PM Narendra Modi, in his annual Pariksha Pe Charcha speech, repeatedly motivated the students by saying that they should not just strive for high marks. Do you say the same to your students?

Very True. It’s not important what you achieve in life; the important thing is that how you achieve it. Our focus should be on the conceptual education rather than cramming the details. Besides, we should also emphasize on skill-based / practical learning as that only is going to be helpful for the students in their future life.

Pedagogy is changing by leaps and bounds every year. How do you keep pace with it?

Of course, pedagogy – the teaching skills and administration has changed a lot since the inception of digital technology. The Covid-19 lockdowns have enabled and empowered the schools more and more as teachers enhanced their own digital skills and parents also valued and supported teachers to get their ideas across the minds of their own children. We, at Modern School, have already been a pioneer in brining digital classrooms – fully Wi-Fi supported – so that the inquisitiveness of the children may be enhanced with the changing times.

How do you motivate students to take up sports as it is a vital part of school education these days?

“All times studies no play / Makes Jack a dull boy”–This dictum holds more true in today’s scenario. Closure of schools during the Covid-19 lockdown has even awakened the concerned educationists and Samaritans of the society to the need of re-opening schools so that the physical health and learning capabilities of students should not be jeopardized. Regular physical exercises, games classes, teams’ sports and matches are being organised at our school – following the Covid- appropriate behavioural instructions. Our Institution holds premier position in sports in NCR.

Where do you see your students /school 10 years from now?

In 10 years from now, I see my institution holding the top-notch position in NCR and my students serving the nation as top-most bureaucrats, technocrats and educationists.

Your profession has many challenges what, in your opinion, is the toughest?

Besides, many professional challenges, the worst challenge we at school have to face is – to deal with the teenagers in this materialistic world where both parents – mothers and fathers– are working and have no time to devote for the families. The breaking up of the joint family system has worsened the situation. In this perspective, the schools have to play a very important role as we have to become not only intellectual but also emotional support for children .

Would you inspire your own children to take up this profession?

Sure.I inspire my students to be not only good teachers but also educationists and academicians so that they may contribute to the society by establishing a chain of good institutions to pave the way for the best education in future to come.

Are you still in touch with your teachers?

Yes. I am indeed in constant touch with my own school and college teachers. I extend greetings to my mentors on every special occasion –be it Teachers’ Day or any festival. I never forget to invite them on other occasions that may be Annual function or a family get-together. Besides, I also seek their blessings after I add a feather in the cap of Modern School.

Three inspiring words for your students

“Earnest hard work with perseverance leads to success” The setting sun asked, “Who will do the rest?” The little lamp answered, “I will do my best.”

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