Saturday, December 03, 2005

EFFECTIVE DUCATION - LEARNING FROM CULTURES: PART 5

LINKAGES TO OUR LEARNING-TEACHING SPACES
When I reflect upon my practice as an educator, I do feel that I walked in with an inherent advantage. I am saying this with a confidence borne out from a thorough self-critique of my personal journey. As a research student, I grew up under a person who knew only the boundless nature of knowledge and who believed in holistic learning (Refer to my blog titled ‘Text or Context’
www.ppsemahesh.blogspot.com, November 24, 2005). As a wildlife researcher I observed another human being whose supreme force of survival was his power of observation (Refer to my blog titled “Cultures That Taught Me, www.ppsemahesh.blogspot.com, dated November 26, 2005). As an educator I walked into an institution envisioned by Jiddu Krishnamurti, one of the greatest thinker and philosopher of education in the twentieth century. As a result of this preparatory sojourn, I naturally approached education as learning process for myself along with my learners. So I was one among them. Dialogue and conversation were the first instruments to confront all issues borne out of conflicts between the learner and the teacher. The space of the learner was too precious and sensitive to be mis-used. Every positive attribute of the learner was acknowledged and celebrated. Aspects of learning essential for the development of the learner was identified and worked upon on a continuous basis. So, the learners were invariably the central characters of our journey. The setting of the Krishnamurti schools, with their expansive and green campuses also enhanced a sense of silence and reflection among the teachers as well as the learners.
I have basically walked into MAIS with the same spirit of openness and reflection. The simplicity of all my colleagues around me and their commitment towards enhancing the learning process – both for the learners and for themselves - has only strengthened the vision of my journey. In MAIS, a phenomenal amount of time and energy is spent towards enhancing the learning for the child. The core teaching philosophy of MAIS, as I understand is simple. ‘Reach out to the learner; enhance the understanding of academic and life issues through a non-coercive, non-intrusive and least infringing manner”. Though my vocabulary may be different, the meaning communicated is not any different from the various alternative schools that I have mention previously. To me MAIS is in the threshold of a wonderful opportunity, as it is a ‘transition school’. MAIS is a mainstream school with an alternate grounding. As a result I have had no problem reaching out in a holistic manner to my learners or to my colleagues.
Yet, I find that there are a few essentials that are lacking and hindering the teaching learning process. The small campus with an overwhelming presence of concrete does take away a sense of serenity from the surroundings. There is a ‘sense of rush’ induced by exam-related anxiety, which is fully understandable as we are also a ‘city school’. Though a free space for expression is available in the learning realm, I do not find my learners open enough for dialogue or conversation on life issues. But this does not worry me enormously for I believe if I keep the space open, my learners would definitely respond at some point of time.

3 Comments:

Blogger sandra kunder said...

Your optimism is inspiring. As always, your blogs are a joy to read! Keep writing Mahesh.
Sandra.

8:29 PM  
Blogger sandra kunder said...

Your optimism is inspiring. As always, your blogs are a joy to read! Keep writing Mahesh.
Sandra.

8:30 PM  
Blogger sandra kunder said...

Your optimism is inspiring. As always, your blogs are a joy to read! Keep writing Mahesh.
Sandra.

8:30 PM  

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