Change Learning and Teaching Strategies

For some years now, I have worked closely with primary, middle and secondary schools run by the government, NGO’s and the private sector.  Input problems like outdated curriculums, quality of book, availability of teachers trained in New Age Teaching Skills and consequently the poor quality students produced are well known and need no elaboration.

The disastrous consequences of learning by rote and the ‘tuition culture’ are obvious. Students find studies boring and ‘tuitions’  deprive them of time to engage in other activities essential for all round personality development. Those who go for university education cannot let go of the school culture of learning only to pass exams. No meaningful research is done and students are unable to compete in high end ‘talent and intelligence’ market.

Consequently, when they enter the job market the employers find they lack skills and can’t apply knowledge and they therefore need  expensive  re-education and skilling.

The economic cost of this time and money wasted is in billion of rupees. More importantly the future competitiveness of the nation is at stake.

All this is obvious to the policy makers but  earnest initiatives are yet to be seen to meet these challenges. If we are to compete with countries like China, Korea, Japan,  and Singapore recognized globally for best education, then we need to change the learning and teaching strategies and adopt the new age learning and reading skills right from primary level.

The new age learning skills like Mind Mapping, Development of Long Term Memory, Whole Brain Learning  , Management of Study Time etc. save time , boost memory and understanding. To learn more visit Apsara Foundation.

10 Tips for Exam

School final exams are  round the corner. Here are recommendations by reputed educators  and practices of top performing students on how to approach the exams and tackle the question paper.
  1. Arrive 15 minutes to 30 min earlier. Familiarise your self with the exam venue, your seat, washrooms and take deep breaths to calm yourself just before the question paper is distributed.
  2. Don’t think about exam, study on the way or discuss with friends. Human brain stores information, like a library stores books, during sleep the previous night. Last minute revisions or discussions disturbs this order in the brain and confuses you.
  3. Use power of spoken word to motivate yourself. Tell yourself,yes you can do it. If others can so can you.
  4. Imagine positive outcome of exam results. Imagine receiving awards, admission into your dream college, admiration of your parents, teachers and friends.
  5. Carefully read complete Question paper including all instructions before starting to write answers.
  6. Sometimes examiners deliberately place difficult questions right at the start. Don’t get scared or demotivated. There will be easy questions too in the paper.
  7. Allocate time wisely. The marks allotted to the question are an indicator as to how much time you should spend on it. allot at least 10 to 15 minutes for revision of your answers at the end.
  8. Attempt easy questions first difficult later. This builds confidence to tackle the difficult ones as you go along.
  9. Don’t get carried away and write too much to questions you know well. Answer appropriately after understanding the question and its relative importance indicated by marks allotted.
  10. Never give up. If you know the answer partially write as much as you know. You will get some marks.
To learn more read ” New Age Learning and Reading Skills” by Ajay Aggarwal published by S Chand Group.

What Parents should be doing to make their children globally competitive

It is well recognized that Indian school education system requires all round improvement in infrastructure,  quality of teachers and indeed the very tools children use for learning. In the 2009, global test ‘Program for International Schools Assessment’ (PISA) conducted by OECD, Indian children ranked 72 of 73 countries. On top were children from China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Finland, Korea and Japan. Illustrations

Indian children are by no means intellectually inferior to those from top ranking countries. Only their learning methods and strategies are obsolete. Nature has provided every child with unlimited learning capacity. It is a fallacy to think that some children are born ‘intelligent’ and others are not. To be ‘intelligent’ you must use your ‘whole brain’. That is, use both, left and right brain to learn.

The important thing to remember is that human brain and therefore our intelligence can be developed with proper mental exercises just like body muscles can be developed with physical exercises. Age is no bar.

In the last twenty years an awesome amount of research has gone into discovering the secrets of the brain. New understanding of the brain has enabled development of new tools to remember, retain and recall information better than ever before. Mind Mapping developed by Tony Buzan is one such tool which can boost memory and understanding several time. APSARA FOUNDATION is successfully teaching New Age learning and Reading Skills since 2012 and the improvement in academic  performance ( Vidya School) seen by many schools is satisfying. Another recent example is from ANANADA Academy, Haldwani – UP.

I urge parents to take serious note of these tools and ensure your children learn these skills as early as 9 -10 years.

Vidya School experience with ‘New Age Learning Skills’

From the principal’s Desk –

“The result of 2013 – 14 was the best as compared to last 10 years result. 94% of the students cleared and were promoted to next class. I even tried with my 10 years old son who is in DPSI. All through the year he scored 100% in science. “

Parents you too can help your children learn and grow.

Continue reading

New Age Learning and Reading Skills

Before we get to implementation, maybe it will be useful to understand a bit more about New age learning and reading skills.

In the last 20 years an awesome amount of research has gone into discovering the secrets of the brain on how we remember, retain and recall information. Nature has provided every child with unlimited learning capacity. It is a fallacy that some children are born ‘intelligent’ and others are not.

To be ‘intelligent’ you must use your ‘whole brain’. That is, use both left and right brain to learn.

Next time we shall see how?

What are New Age Learning and Reading Skills?

School education system in India needs overhaul. Amongst other things the way students learn and teachers teach must change. This requires massive effort and investment in training  teachers  New Age Learning and reading skills.

These skills include:

  1. Speed Reading
  2. Preparing Notes as Mind Maps
  3. Developing long term memory using techniques based on recent discoveries on how the brain works.
  4. Managing Study Time

These skills must become part of the regular school curriculums. And ongoing till new and better ways to learn emerge.

The problem is how do we implement this.

I shall share some thoughts next time.