Class IX, X CBSE students need not come to school for lab work
CBSE students enrolled in Class IX or X need not come to school to do hands-on science assignments like sublimation, filtration or evaporation.
They can do these, and many other experiments and practical tasks, at home using easily available tools and materials and with the help of instruction videos and written guidance texts uploaded by the CBSE.
For sublimation, filtration and evaporation, for instance, all they need are stuff like plastic bottles, insulation tape, cotton, rulers, teaspoons, common salt, sand, and ice cream sticks.
Academics have welcomed the move, which comes at a time schools have reopened for Class IX upwards in most states but attendance has been low because of parents’ Covid jitters.
Last year, with schools closed because of the pandemic, the CBSE allowed students of Classes IX to XII to perform lab experiments virtually on the online platform OLab.
The students issued instructions step by step while a computer carried out the experiments as directed, a science teacher from a Navodaya school explained.
On Friday, the CBSE issued a circular listing video and guidance material for 75 experiments the students are required to do in Classes IX and X.
“Further to this (experiment through OLab), the CBSE has curated a set of alternate experiments using simple, readily available household materials that learners can use to do these activities at their homes,” the circular said.
“The hands-on activities have been designed to have similar learning outcomes for all the lab experiments required to be done in (the academic year) 21-22 for class 9 and 10.”
After doing the experiments, the students can record their observations in writing.
While the activities and materials prescribed are deemed to be safe for the children to do on their own, schoolteachers are required to review the experiments and materials before assigning tasks and advise parents whether supervision is necessary for any particular activity, the circular said.
A CBSE official said no decision had been taken about introducing similar provisions for Classes XI and XII.
A teacher said: “This can be advised for higher classes too. For example, the students can easily do experiments like isolation of DNA from spinach or dissection of flowers at home.”
Kiran Mehta, former principal of Salwan Public School, said the CBSE was gradually getting the students to “learn independently”.
“The students can themselves acquire certain skills at home. It’s a welcome step,” Mehta said.