STEM-focused Teacher Training to empower future leaders

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India’s educational landscape is undergoing a transformative journey propelled by the ambitious National Education Policy (NEP) 2020. This policy envisions an education system that is inclusive, flexible and aligns seamlessly with the demands of the digital age. At the core of this progressive agenda is the recognition of teachers as educational leaders. Teachers are entrusted with the vital responsibility of shaping positive learning environments and nurturing students. In this context, specialised teacher training programs become crucial for providing educators with the requisite skills and confidence to assume leadership roles.

NEP 2020 underscores the urgency of addressing critical gaps in the education system. The World Economic Forum’s Education 4.0 India report states that approximately 70% of grade III students lack essential reading and arithmetic skills. Read report here. Furthermore, 68% of schools in India are government-run institutions, accounting for 51% of the nation’s teachers. They lack access to computers or internet connectivity, intensifying the challenge of preparing students for a rapidly evolving world.

NEP & Teacher Training

The NEP 2020 envisions a paradigm shift in teacher development, with emphasis on continuous learning. It acknowledges that teachers must intentionally upskill themselves to navigate the ever-changing educational landscape. That is why NEP mandates a minimum of 50 hours of training in a year for all teachers through regional, local, and national workshops. Additionally, the policy also recognises the importance of integrating technology into the teacher training process.

The NEP 2020 holds immense potential for teachers, who are the primary change agents in India’s education system. The policy intervenes at key junctures of a teacher’s professional journey, offering proposals on teacher education, recruitment, career progression, and continuous professional development. The mandate for continuous learning is a cornerstone, acknowledging that sustained changes in education need educators who are committed to lifelong learning.

Specialised Teacher Training for STEM

In the context of NEP 2020, it becomes imperative to delve into specialized teacher training programmes, particularly those focusing on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). These programmes will not only support the goals set forth by NEP 2020, but also elevate the overall quality of education across the country. Given the increasing integration of technology into India’s educational fabric, incorporating STEM-focused teaching strategies is the next logical step.

STEM-focused teacher training programmes equip educators to embrace project-based learning and activities, aligning seamlessly with NEP 2020’s emphasis on experiential learning. This approach is vital for enhancing instructional methods, fostering creativity and innovation, and adequately preparing students for success in an increasingly interconnected and dynamic world.

Effective collaboration emerges as a catalyst for successful specialised training programmes. By partnering with premium knowledge institutions and the private sector, these programmes can be designed to offer teachers practical experience. Such collaborations create a supportive ecosystem for the holistic development of students, and further the scope of STEM learning.

Smile Foundation’s Teacher Training Initiatives

Smile Foundation aims to make STEM learning accessible to students from marginalised communities and hard to reach areas. We are actively implementing creative and innovative learning programmes in collaboration with like-minded corporate partners, educational institutions, and community-based organisations. Learn more about our efforts here.

The Teacher Training & STEM initiatives at Smile Foundation aim to make classrooms interactive and vibrant. The initiatives focus on:

  • Inquiry-based and activity-based learning
  • Classroom Management
  • Child pedagogy
  • Experiential learning in Maths and Science
  • Effective lesson planning
  • Stakeholder Management

The above ensure a comprehensive approach to teacher development.

The integration of NEP 2020 and specialised STEM-centred teacher training programmes holds immense promise for India’s education system. Empowering teachers with the skills and knowledge to lead effectively is the need of the hour. The collaborative efforts of schools, government bodies, and NGOs can ensure that India’s teachers are equipped to steer the education system towards a more inclusive future.

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