I am not an Educational Guru trying to teach something here. Nor do I have the required qualification. Through this article I just want to share the culture I practice in my school. I have developed these practices out of immense love for children and utmost passion to teach.
The following article is especially written for pre-primary and primary school teachers serving in remote community schools. I hope this article makes sense to them and help them as it has helped me. So the information here may not be useful to other educationists elsewhere and other professionals but what’s there in reading it once and dropping some comments. You never know, you might be having much effective and better strategies and practices. I know there are books written on skills and strategies to teach but let’s think out of the box. So leave some of yours to help folks like me to serve the nation better!
1: Collect and Win: I ask students(class 2 and below) to collect garbage like plastic, paper, chocolate covers lying around the school campus and ask them to count in front of me before throwing it into the pit. And whoever manages to collect the highest number of garbage is rewarded with a ‘Big Laksho’ on their noisy nose (please don’t laugh on my subject).
Advantages: 1. School will be always clean.
2. A sense of competition is preserved.
3. A sense of cleanliness and hygiene is nurtured.
4. Revision on numbering and counting.
2: Picture Clue: I make a simple sketch of a student or a fellow teacher on the blackboard and ask the class to recognize it. My students love it. We laugh a lot whenever i am done with a sketch on the board.
Advantages: 1. Use their brain to co-relate the figure and the marks.
2. A great fun activity.
3. Exercise to recall and know the names of teachers and schoolmates.
3: Drawing the opposite picture: I ask students to sketch or draw a picture drawn by senior students on the back of the same paper. They immerse themselves to complete the drawing.
Advantages: 1. Use and develop their logical thinking.
2. Zero wastage of paper.
3. A sense of pride is fostered when students can draw the same picture.
4. Learn some drawing skills.
4: A visit to the library: when my students complete the assignments given to them on time I take them to our small library. Students love stories so I often read a story and narrate it to them. In other days I let them take their favorite books to read within that period.
Advantages: 1. Increase love for reading.
2. Mini vacation for the learners to the world outside (through books).
3. becomes more punctual in doing tasks for another visit to the library.
5: Running to the class: when students (class two and below) are found outside playing during the class hours I tell them that whoever gets inside the class first when i count to 3 would be rewarded with another Big Laksho!
Advantages: 1. Students get seated and get ready for the lesson to be taught before I enter the class.
2. Enhance their ability to re-act quickly on greater challenges ahead.
3. I don’t have to shout, scold them or get angry.
4. A great sense of competition is alive and happening which I think is good for them.
6: Writing from the text: I ask students to copy a whole article from a textbook without any changes. They love this writing activity as much as they do with the Picture Clue.
Advantages: Students would be familiar with-
1. Punctuation marks.
3. And their handwriting will also improve (a constant monitoring and a clear instruction is needed though).
4. Student’s level of concentration is increased.
7: Give away old text books: I often visit to our storeroom where a lot of out-dated and old textbooks lay unused. I give it to the students who pester me to have one.
Advantages: 1. The Books will help the learners be in touch with books even after the school is over- Fosters learning in a private setting.
2. Desire to learn more.
3. Will teach youngsters at their house.
8: warming up: Before I begin with a new topic I ask my students to clap their hands or stamp their feet, jump or do some running around the school. Wired isn’t it? But for me it has worked. The students love this activity too.
Advantages: 1. Students get energized.
2. There is more blood flowing throughout their body which means they are more alert.
3. A fresh mind to pour in a new lesson.
9: Classroom Language: I made a list of useful classroom Phrases like ‘Please can I go out sir’, ‘May I have a pen please’ etc and asked students to memorize the phrases and use it.
Advantage: 1. English speaking is slowing gaining its popularity in my school.