Smile Foundation set off a series of Quality Education workshops with a one-day workshop named ‘Maths and Science Made Easy’ today in New Delhi. This is part of a series of workshops planned across India which will train teachers to help make the subjects like Mathematics and Science interesting and easy.
Special kits and equipments, developed especially for the programme, had been introduced to make the subjects more understandable and interesting for the teachers. The participants were also trained to make the procedures customized for students at various schools and places.
Smile Foundation has already been conducting various such workshops on different subjects for the last three years. In the new series of workshops, the training techniques has been specifically focused on exploring newer and interesting approaches to teaching Mathematics and Science. The objective is to bring qualitative changes in teaching methodology of these subjects, making them more interesting and student friendly. New narrative methods were also introduced to make the process of learning an appealing experience.
Thirty teachers from 10 NGOs, funded by Smile Foundation, from four states participated in the workshop. They were Aadhar (Delhi), Nav Shrishti (Haryana), Nai Disha (U. P.), Sankalp (U. P.), Sahyogita (Delhi), Tagore School (Rajasthan), Health and Care Society (Delhi), GurgaonHaryana.com (Haryana) and Prayatn (Delhi).
The teachers were from the 1st to 5th standards of the schools run through the NGOs supported by Smile Foundation. The workshop is part of Smile Foundation’s endeavor to improve the quality of education imparted through various educational centres run by its partner NGOs across India.
The special kits for the training have been developed to help enhance communication skill between students and teachers, between peer groups, as well as to enhance learning and grasping skills of the children.
The workshop was participative in nature and concept of using puppets, poems, crossword puzzles, quizzes, tools and equipments, and more interestingly, gestures and enacting of the subject by the teacher to enhance learning.
Smile Foundation plans to introduce similar methodology in 65 municipal schools in Mumbai covering 15,000 students on a long-term basis. The three-year special teaching programme named ‘Universal Mathematics Programme’ (UMP) is planned to commence in January 2006. Mathematics will be the special focus of the same and the target groups will be standards 6th to 10th. Regular teachers training and skill upgradation programme are included in the UMP.
Quality of the teachers, their capabilities and the teaching approach become all the more vital especially when the students are from impoverished families and are first generation school goers. There is a need for creating an enabling environment where not only the children, but also their parents, come to realize and appreciate the indispensable need for education. This will be of great significance in reducing the dropout rate. Moreover, teachers, being the first interface, need to be more versatile than merely being academic experts. They need to be prime movers, motivating favorably about the value of education in shaping individuals life and future.
Moreover, an adult needs a reason to do something, so does a child. Hence we need to present different situations to understand its use and create interest.
At the end of the workshop the participating teachers were presented with the specially designed teaching and learning tools, booklets and literatures for introduction in the education centres.