Madhya Pradesh: If Chanakya, just one teacher can bring so much change, we have so many; Stay optimistic, bring change, says Usha Thakur

Indore: Devoting themselves to guide and mould generations into their best, teachers are pillars of the world. Felicitating 21 of these pillars from various schools in Indore, Free Press in association with ISBA group of institutes organised a special event on Saturday, i.e. Teacher’s Day in Free Press House.

Saluting the devotion of teachers, the event was an attempt to express gratitude to teachers for dedicating their lives for setting ideals for the society. Welcoming teachers and guests, Free Press editor-in-chief Arshit Gautam quoted verses of Kabir sharing how essential it is to have a ‘guru’ and the role they play in building human beings.

Chief guest Tourism Minister Usha Thakur congratulated the teachers and guided them on essentials of education. Special Guest Dr Rakesh Saxena, director of Shri Govindram Seksaria Institute of Technology and Science, addressed the teachers.

Ranjan Mittal, director of ISBA group of institutions, recounted his experiences and life lessons. Vishal Mahajan, director of Vigyas Institute, quoted the importance of sincerity.

In an interesting discussion, teachers shared their experiences and lessons from switch to online classes due to coronavirus.

The co-partner of the event was Indian Oil, co-sponsor was Vigyas Institute and 92.7 Big FM was the radio partner.

Turn challenges into opportunities: Tourism Minister Usha Thakur

“We must do our part in developing society. COVID-19 shook our entire society, the world and our being. How we handle this is important. I want to ask you (all the teachers) to connect our children to ancient Indian education system. If we are committed to a task, then nothing can move us. Until teachers learn and inculcate these essential lessons then it is not possible to pass them on to students."

"In my recent personal experience, as COVID-19 outspread, we needed sanitisers in our villages. We looked for a solution in our traditional education system and developed sanitiser using boiled neem leaves and salt."

"Further, dried cow dung is burned in every household with the first ray of sunshine. This sanitises the household and entire environment around it for the next 12 hours."

"What can be a bigger lesson than corona that we need to go back to our roots and learn how to turn challenges into opportunities! We need to keep an optimistic environment for our students and surroundings. If Chanakya, just one teacher can bring so much change, we have so many! Then why we are not able to stay optimistic and bring change? Why kids are committing suicide?"

I request your support in changing the scenario and help us build students that are ready to ‘Make in India’. Further, you all must study and help us in the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.

Teaching is beyond classrooms lessons: Earn Respect, Give Good Marks

Dr Rakesh Saxena, director of Shri Govindram Seksaria Institute of Technology and Science said, “It is inherent in the child to listen to Guru. In my last 35 years of being an educator, I have learned that teachers must continue growing. We must learn and adapt to technology, life, education policy and in every aspect. A teacher should be such that it is enough to guide students to find and achieve their goals."

"A teacher is a role model, so the way she/he conducts leads the way for the child to learn to eat, walk, conduct and live in this world. Every year, we get fresh blood in our college i.e. students of first-year who have just passed class 12th. They have a different way of life, now they say hi to everyone."

"If teachers will feel offended and expect child to touch their toes, then it will just disturb their blood pressure and sugar level. If a child's progress is slow, provide them personal counseling and you must even help them solve the problem. Teaching is not limited to classroom lessons."

"Students must know and learn about their surroundings, city, country, homes so that they value what they have. Further, students must be taught about food and nutrition if we truly want a healthier world. Teachers should never reveal and personal, departmental and economic problem to the child. Always keep smiling! It builds good relations with students. Teachers should always give good marks irrespective of student’s behaviour. It will earn you respect and give them life lessons.”

Our moral character sets standards for students

Ranjan Mittal, director of ISBA group of institutes says, "We are thankful to be a part of this event to felicitate teachers. We, as teachers, have responsibility beyond classrooms. It is cliché to say we are leaders anymore. We are role-models indeed. Students inculcate everything we do. Apart from being teachers, it is our moral character that is very important. It is very important for us to emerge as a good teacher and contribute to society.”

Work sincerely every day & create magic

“I was 20 when I decided to become a teacher. My teacher told me 2 lines quoting the importance of a teacher: ‘Pattar jo tarashu toh khuda bane, Insaan jo tarashu toh kya bane’.

This defines a teacher's responsibility. Students have started believing that progress happens overnight. They hear about success stories overnight, but fail to see the struggle behind that success. A story I often retell my students is about how a 15-year-old girl can pick up a buffalo. The father in the story explains that when the buffalo was born, his daughter would pick it up and take it to the backyard every day. She has been doing to same ever since. Buffalo did not grow in a day, with her growth, the girl also grew stronger. Moral: Do your work every day with sincerity and it will look like magic one day," says Vishal Mahajan, director of Vigyas Institute.

Teacher’s Talk: Shift in Education System from Chalk & Talk to Online Class

“Initially, when online classes were started and we had to switch over, teachers were struggling. However, we have learned and adapted. Now, all the teachers are sailing through it and conducted online classes successfully,” says Rupashree Sapru, Satya Sai Vidya Vihar.

Neeraj Motwani, Choithram School (Manik Bagh) said, “Conducting online class is very tedious task. Generally, we teach with personal touch in offline classrooms. We had to learn to teach online. I am a math teacher. I will share an incident from a recent class. A student was teased was younger sibling. Then mother hit the child by throwing something to settle the kids. It was hilarious and such instances are common now. There are times, when kids are in bed attending the class. Sometimes, they just wake up right before the class and are yawning throughout. These moments were unimaginable for us.”

“I teach Hindi in school. I have also been a student of psychology. I am accustomed to reading students. Now, when we are conducting online classes, I can easily point out if the student is diverted. Whether the child is sleeping or eating. Hence, students have to be extra attentive in my class,” says Amrita Awasthi, New Digamber Public School.

“Earlier we use to teach students using chalk and talk. Now with coronavirus outbreak and lockdown, suddenly our platform changed. We had to learn and develop a way to reach students. Now, in the online platform, the biggest issue you are being watched by parents and entire family. Feedback from the entire family also comes almost instantly. It makes teachers more conscious about what they are saying and teaching. This makes us try harder and have more in-depth knowledge of our subjects," said Sanjay Asthana, St Paul Higher Secondary School

“I have been working as a teacher since 20 years. Online classes and coronavirus outbreak has been a big crisis for most teachers. Students are not attentive, network fails, limited access to laptops and e-technologies, etc. However, as a consequence of online classes, parents are praising efforts of teachers. Parents can also see how teachers are working hard and ensuring effective teaching. Parents didn't know how a teacher teaches until now. Hats off to all the hard working teachers here,” said Dilip Sawaner, teacher at Vidyasagar School.

“We should not take conducting online classes as a challenge. It is actually a platform to develop our skills and connect with children. In my experience, our relation with students has improved. My students miss our offline classes and are waiting to be back to classrooms,” says Rupali Jain, teacher at Medicaps International School.

“In school, we teach students only where it is a closed room with students and teacher. Now, we have parents and family observing us throughout the class. To ensure that students are not struggling and have a way to discuss their issues, we have made a group where students can talk and chat about their difficulties," said Sadhana Dhawle, Shri Gujarati English Medium School

“Initially, school started with only whatsapp group. It was sweet how students of class 3 replied sharing their everyday tasks. Now, eventually with time, they have understood this new way of learning and are enjoying online classes. We have got an opportunity to groom ourselves in terms of technology,” said Richa Jain, Columbia Convent.

“Whenever we face a crisis, it teaches us lesson. Today we are using technology as last option, but it will help our education system in coming times. When weather is too harsh or there are times when kids cannot come to school, we can again utilise technology to conduct classes,” said Harendra Prasad, Kendriya Vidyalaya No 1.

“Shift has become two way of learning for teachers and students. We were facing technical glitches initially. I sought help from my husband on conducting classes. He would record videos and guide me on how I can teach online more effectively. When it comes to technology, we can learn a lot from our students as well,” said KS Gaisha, St Raphael’s Higher Secondary School.

“Teachers should not hesitate to learn from students. We should appreciate this opportunity. As a teacher, we must learn and learn only,” said Anu Soni, Pragya Girls School.

“I have seen an amazing change. Those students who were late-comers, they are the first to attend online class. Good students are still studying, but this amazing change is seen in those students who were late comers. These students who came late to class are more attached to technology and even tech-friendly. They are leading online classes.”- Ashish Mishra, Shri Vaishnav Academy School.

“I read story about Socrates recently. He was put behind bars for a mistake that he did not commit. As a last wish, he wanted to learn music. Even a day before his death, he was learning. So learning is a life-long process. Online teaching is our opportunity to learn.”- Pramila Sharma, Choithram School.

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