Active Learning in Mother Project & Model School
Active learning focuses the responsibility of learning on students. At Tomorrow’s Foundation we are replacing the traditional methods by active ones. Our aim is very simple - we want the children to be at the centre of our teaching learning processes. We want the teaching learning environment to change from being passive to active.
In TF’s Mother Project and Model School, steps have been taken before introducing competency-based active learning in the primary level. The whole teaching body of the project has been exposed to innovative techniques and tools through trainings and workshops. TF’s teachers also had the opportunity to visit Chennai Corporation Schools, where active learning is already implemented. The visit was facilitated by Tamil Nadu’s SSA (Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, the Indian government’s program to universalize elementary education).
Ms. R Malathy of Tamil Nadu SSA explaining the mathematics tool to visiting TF team.
Visiting TF team with the Tamil Nadu SSA officials. We would like express our sincere gratude to TN SSA for their kind cooperation.
The teaching body was then ready to identify the specific tools that could be used in each class. Subject wise and child wise planning has also been done by the teachers to define the present situation of each child in each subject, regarding four major competencies: reading, writing, numerical and life skills. The first three competencies are linked to the last one (life skills). The children have then been classified in three groups: weak, average and good.
Ms. Jaya Mazumdar, a teacher of Mother Project explaining how to introduce shapes and colours to the pre-school children in a training programme with fellow teachers. Instead of resource persons from outside, Mother Project team members have capacitated themselves to train each other.
Another Teacher, Ms. Smiritikana Biswas explaining how to introduce letters through play-way methods.
Ms. Suchandra demonstrating to fellow teachers how to help the students with complex tables and multiplications.
The teachers of Mother Project and Model School also participated in daylong workshops to prepare customised learning tools for their students.
Learning tools being used in Mother Project and Model School
These steps are leading to proper implementation of active learning in our Mother Project.
Among the goals of the introduction of these new methods is the progressive ending of traditional exams. The classrooms will also be rearranged: the school benches will be replaced by mattresses. Circulating in such an environment will be easier, as well as group studying.
Regular sharing among the teachers are taking place so as to understand the nuances of engaging the students to the maximum extent and gain maximum learning achievements.
TF has in addition recently submitted a project to Kolkata Municipal Corporation within the framework of advocacy for macro level changes on teaching learning processes.
In Model School, the children in pre-primary classes already face concrete problems to which they have to find solutions, under teachers’ supervision.