Monday, 30th October 2017

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Teach parents to teach child: CBSE

Possible long pause prompts school-home initiative

By Basant Kumar Mohanty in New Delhi
  • Published 6.04.20, 2:42 AM
  • Updated 6.04.20, 3:18 AM
  • 2 mins read
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For this purpose, videoconferences may be held between teachers and parents. (Shutterstock)

The Central Board of Secondary Education has asked its schools to educate and encourage parents to help their children with home-based learning, now that it seems the schools may remain closed longer than initially expected.

Board chairperson Anita Karwal on Saturday wrote to the principals of all the 20,000-odd affiliated schools, asking them to focus on “school-home collaboration for learning”.

Many schools are getting their teachers and pupils to participate in daily interactive classes held through videoconferencing from their homes. Some classes are held as video lectures or presentations, too.

The board has now decided that the measure will not work well enough without the active involvement of the parents, and wants the schools to advise and educate the parents on the role they need to play.

For this purpose, videoconferences may be held between teachers and parents.

Karwal has asked the schools not to fret over the loss of academic days, especially with the government hinting the lockdown may be lifted only in a staggered manner after the April 14 deadline.

“Can the home be engaged by the school for some lateral solution.... The lockdown is building new arteries within homes; families are rediscovering their bonds and connections; they are making renewed efforts to do things that they enjoy together as a family,” Karwal has written.

“Therefore how about considering this challenge as an opportunity to shift focus from ‘schooling only at school’ to ‘school-home collaboration for learning’? This is a time to build synergy between school environment and home environment.”

The board has asked the schools to prepare questionnaires for the parents of students of every grade, nudging them to better understand their child’s specific abilities and interests.

Karwal’s letter says teachers may make virtual visits to individual pupils’ homes to talk to the child and the parents to better understand the pupil’s background.

It asks the teachers to explain to the parents exactly how much knowledge and skill their child is expected to achieve at the end of the year. Parents will also be encouraged to guide their children on their school projects.

The board wants the pupils to acquire knowledge not just from their textbooks but from all that they see around them at their homes, the letter says.

For instance, the parents can join their children in together trying to understand the technology behind household appliances such as pressure cookers and hair dryers.

Also, the children must take part in kitchen activities, the letter says.

“Not only will they learn one of the most important survival skills, that is cooking, they can also learn about STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) through classification, organisation, quantities, proportions, thermal conductivity, chemical reaction, audits, optimisation, hygiene, timing, nutrition and many more,” Karwal has written.

Springdales School principal Ameeta Mullah Wattal said the orientation provided by the schools would also help the parents cope with their children, whom confinement at home might turn restless most of the time.

“You cannot allow the children to watch TV or play with their mobile phones the whole day. Besides, learning has to be activity-based — but the parents would normally be busy with their work and the teachers would be equally challenged with domestic work and online schooling,” Wattal said.

“So, there’s a need for collaboration between the parents and the teachers for the children’s activity-based learning.”