Indian Education Congress 2017 : The Digital Transformation in Education & Training

Session Highlights:

  • Is Digital Transformation only for the big institutions
  • Should we transform a Training Organisation in totality or only the skill learning component
  • Are schools ready for MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses)
  • Should we integrate Student Management with LMS in Higher Education

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Session Moderator: Mr. Aditya Malik, CEO & MD-Talent Edge & Senior Partner-Lumis Partners

  • Dr. Antriksh Johri, Director-IT & CISO, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE)
  • Prof. Dr. Dwarika Uniyal, Assistant Dean, & Executive-Education, IIM Kashipur
  • Mr. Gopal Devanahalli, Senior Vice President, Manipal Global Education
  • Mr. Sreenivasan Ramakrishnan, Co-Founder, CL Educate (Career Launcher)

As an introduction to the session, a short film about a toddler playing with an IPad thrown among a few print magazines, was shown; and naturally the toddler liked the response of the icons on the IPAD that open new windows when pressed upon and not the print media that was passive and did nothing on pressing the photos on it! And was told that child of future will naturally make his choices….

I was not in consonance to this way of looking at digitization of education. It is very important to really understand a human being first, to know where to introduce, what to introduce and when to…

About a decade or two, children were branded as couch potatoes addicted to television. A family had one television and every one fought for the remote. Circa 2017, there are as many personalized entertainment gadgets in hand, as as many people in the home !! Children do not want to move out to play….. on the other hand, a young doctor of 24 complains about 72 hours of non-stop duty in the hospital. Imagine the fitness needed from a young doctor ! Will you get that if you thrust the Ipad to a 7-month old?

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The human being is the most creative and intelligent being that has ever been created by the almighty. A child has so many intelligences and we intend to confine the child to playing with icons? One of the popular theory of Multiple intelligences propounded by Mr. Howard Gardener, talks about eight of them that a human being is naturally born with –

  • musical-rhythmic,
  • visual-spatial,
  • verbal-linguistic,
  • logical-mathematical,
  • bodily-kinesthetic,
  • naturalistic
  • interpersonal,
  • intrapersonal

Unless we do not facilitate the child to blossom in all these intelligences, we lose out on of the greatest creation that god has bestowed on this world – creative, thinking human being.

Of course, digitization can help in personalization of learning, but we should know when we should introduce and what quantum and which features.

A FEW FUNDAMENTAL QUESTIONS you need to ask yourself, to understand underlying principles of learning-

  • What percent of what we have been taught we apply? What do we apply?
    • The audience responded …less than 20%
    • We apply more of what we learnt in the playgrounds and other arenas where we were involved in action and learnt a great deal.
  • What percentage we learnt from teacher, what percentage we learn from friends?
    • Here again, majority of what we learnt is from discussions and interactions, not from a lecture that is made boring by most teachers. Of course, there are brilliant exceptions
  • How many teachers do we remember fondly and why?
    • We were very good in those subjects where teacher showed affection and compassion.
    • We naturally want to perform well in those subjects and took interest

And HOW MUCH do we retain or recall of what we have been exposed to?

  • What we hear….10% retained
  • What we read….30% retained
  • What we see…..40% retained
  • What we do……70-80% retained

So whatever we create in the learning process, we need to lay emphasis on hard-core hands-on experience that the learner will retain for his life-time.

Why do we need Digitization of Education?

  1. To learn at your own TIME and SPACE
  2. To reach the best of the faculty and learning process to the remotest learner
  3. Revisiting the important or to understand, as many times as you want
  4. Engaging the learner enough to help him understand and imbibe
  5. Ability to create a variety of resources at the learners disposal

As CL Educate what has been your experience?

  • 2000 AD: compasscom : The supplementary and complementary web-based facilitation for school education beyond class VI
  • synchronous and asynchronous modes
  • 2001 AD Facilitated Live sessions on various subjects . …even biology, with a lot of animation and graphical representation of processes was used then
  • engaging content, desktop/laptop

In 2005 created even a virtual chemistry lab – catering to the US schools under no child left behind program

Over the years mobility has come to play a central role

  • Over the last two decades the digitization processes in CL Educate has helped to
    • Create enough resources online to engage every learner
      • conceptual learning, demonstrating the concept
      • applying to understand
      • practice to master
      • engaging with fellow learners to feel good and also share and learn
        – discussion rooms, forums,
        – gaming!
    • Ability to facilitate upward of 3000 students in a single session, at times
    • Enough Success stories created
      – across the segments
      – study at home students CAT/ LST…
      – schools …using

What is the Role of a teacher in the digitized world? One has to be a
– An eager learner all the time;
– courage to fail as he pushes his boundaries
– Have humility to unlearn and learn, even from students
– Ability to be an ideator, generate ideas and implement them
– Of course a facilitator to even those who are learning from huge geographical distances
– Create MOOCs
What sort of Impact on learners in CL Educate endeavours
– test prep … Night classes, huge numbers attend to these classes every day from comfort of home
– any time anywhere… having mobile resident modules as well as ability to log into live sessions even while on the move

What Future trends do you see…..

Disruptive technologies will bring huge shifts in the entire learning cycle. We will see the impact of a few of the following technologies very soon..
– virtual reality, augmented reality
– machine learning
– deep learning

H H Dalai Lama – ‘Love and Compassion make all the difference’

It has always been a pleasure contributing to the spaces where children observe, introspect, participate, engage, discuss, debate and learn. One such movement that I have been part of as a volunteer, contributor and advisor has been ITIHAAS, an endeavor by a team of strong-willed and highly capable youth lead by Smita Vats and Shivani, has been doing a yeoman service for over 15 years now, in the space of Heritage Education for children. The movement now addresses children and institutions in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh while children from across the country travel to these states to soak in and also learn the heritage of our rich, composite nation.

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There are many initiatives by ITIHAAS, year around, that engage the children, schools and the entire education community not only through their walks but also through facilitation of research in literature, music, traditions, livelihoods that are integral to Heritage.

As part of the latest initiative, first in the series of Changemakers talk, His Holiness Dalai Lama delivered the ITIHAAS ANNUAL ADDRESS to the school fraternity… What an interaction, it was !!  Always a pleasure listening to His Holiness. It was a wonderful opportunity to interact with him too. Just observing him silently is good enough to absorb so much about purposefulness towards humanity…

As he was addressing the children, teachers and education community, laced with his inimitable humour, I made it point to tweet whatever I could gather. Here I collate my tweets and share for posterity. Each of the points that he shares are invaluable –

  • Every #child receiving #love, affection, hugs of #parents in #childhood, will grow to be a confident and compassionate adult
  • we, generation of 20th century created a lot of problems, your gen of 21st century, has to solve. Solve Disagreement by talking
  • Young generation, #brothers and #sisters, think how to build a happy and compassionate world, through education and learning
  • Through warm heartedness you will be able to resolve every issue in the world; love, forgiveness will help you to bring peace
  • Anger brings violence; conflicts need to be solved through dialogue; love others and respect them to facilitate. Create peace
  • Non violence, peaceful dialogue by you will create a peaceful and happy family, society and world228
  • #Secular #education needs to include moral #values, ethics; value of warm heartedness makes the difference to humanity
  • fear is part of human being; I train my mind through analytical #meditation; analyse the source of anger; you will solve
  • Positivity begets positivity, creates peace; work towards eliminating negativity; Ahimsa and Karuna can solve all problems
  • without inner #peace we cannot develop world peace? #Trust & #affection will beget happiness & peace at home and society
  • As an youngster, I can contribute to solving every problem with my small actions with awareness; environmental issues, example
  • People’s movement – I must think, I must talk, I must work – our vision, on sharing, can gather mass to bring change
  • All religions, all traditions talk of love, harmony. #India needs to take lead in promoting tolerance, forgiveness and peace
  • Different #religions may have different approaches for different people, but the final purpose is #oneness and #love
  • Be a kind-hearted and #compassionate person. #Education needs to just contribute for this one purpose. That is the basic value
  • I never saw my mother angry. Not just me, she cared for every child ….First teacher of love and compassion is my mother
  • Every teacher has responsibility towards every child.Yr love helps every child understand whatever U impart. Infuses Happiness
  • Secret of my youth. 9 hrs of sleep and rest of 15 hours with peaceful thoughts. Have healthy mind. Smile adds to handsomeness

He also interacted with students by taking their questions and responding. I shall get the complete video across soon…

I have not done justice to this event if I do not speak about the Live painting by Artist Vilas Nayak that mesmerized His Holiness The Dalai Lama Dalai Lama. I consciously did not do, as I felt I need to write a separate story on it. I shall.

 

Inspiring Excellence of Families and School : DPS Patna

It was a pleasure facilitating both teachers and families in separate sessions at DPS Patna. Each session was of over two hours, though short, were very invigorating and inspiring.

Can we enable ourselves, our children, our families and communities to be –

a. Eager learners,

b. Have courage to push the boundaries, not worried about “failing” and

c. Be humble whatever we achieve

If we are able to instill these three values, then our job is done…

Glad to have parents getting out of car on their way back when they spotted me by the drive way to say, “I came with a very different intention to talk to the Principal about future of my son, I am going away completely transformed. I will make sure that I invest at home and also with the parents work with school to make all the difference to every child”

 DPS Patna - Facilitating families excel

One of the teachers said, “I have been struggling with a challenge for the last six months, I found the reason and solution to it in these two hours. Thanks”

 DPS Patna, workshop for teachers - Striving for Excellence, Realizing potential

It was one of those days where I had to touch down at 8am and take off at 3pm, for I had another session with art world in Delhi, as my baby SPANDAN festival of Performing Arts has been underway at India Habitat Centre, with large format exhibition paying tribute to Iconic Institutions, movements and Gurus.

Thanks to Anup and Ragini of Career Launcher Patna, for facilitating and inspiring families in Patna to EXCEL.

E to the power of 6 – Yadavindra Public School, Patiala – A compelling workshop by Sreeni

Chilly morning of Jan 14th, Sankranti, the harvest festival celebrated across India, also saw the first day of the new academic year at Yadavindra Public School, Patiala. All staff assembled for the initiation into the new year with a magical and compelling workshop by me (Sreeni), E to the power of 6.

Sreeni's workshop, E to the power of 6 at Yadavindra Public School, Patiala

The light drizzle on the already foggy, cold morning, made all members of staff, over hundred of them, huddle inside the dance room of the middle school, that was equipped with hot blowers and heaters. I, with my personification of energy and child-like spirit, sent a shocker when I asked all of them to assemble in the well of the amphitheatre. They expressed quite a few reasons why they should not be in the rain. I wanted them to be children and not teachers, and do what children would do. Finally, with great reluctance, they made it to the well of the amphithetre.

They must have wondered what this crazy, monkish creature is up to. I could see the quizzical faces, and in the few smirks. A few shared that I looked like a musician. We all carry our own perceptions! for good of course 😉 What happened for the next hour or so, in the light drizzle (smiling sun peeping from behind the dark clouds at times) has been magical. The discussion that followed about the trust walk, made them realize a lot about what it means to be visually-challenged, being a facilitator to one, feeling of responsibility, the role of trust etc. etc…

Sreeni's workshop, E to the power of 6 at Yadavindra Public School, Patiala

The real import of the exercise dawned upon them, when I asked them to appreciate the situation of the child (ren) that they are guiding in the class, in the school or at home, to that of the visually challenged that they guided for a while, during the exercise. It was a bolt out of blue. A few were dumbstruck, quite a few very intensely lost, and a couple could not even fathom!

The whole of five hours passed by, with a few more exercises of self-introspection, each facilitating them to peal their own layers, each helping them to show the mirror for the participants to reflect and introspect. What was more heartening was that they did not want to leave without watching a few videos of lateral thinking on academic curriculum design and pedagogy. The session had to be extended beyond the time, at their insistence. Quite a few of the teachers and also the leadership team shared that, it was for the first time such a thing happened.

Sreeni's workshop, E to the power of 6 at Yadavindra Public School, Patiala

I had asked, the headmaster, Mr. Stanley Vinod Kumar and the coordinator, Ms. Sangeeta, a day before that I needed at least six hours to have a meaningful session. Stanley, with his sagacity and understanding of the mindset of the participants, asked me not to exceed four and half hours. He was delighted, so were the dean and the leadership, that teachers insisted on watching more and staying beyond.

As a facilitator, of course, I am always hungry for more. It is a ‘nasha’ – addiction – to facilitate more and more, for I always feel that I have not done justice to all that I wanted to facilitate, for the long travel that I undertook to conduct the workshop.

It was indeed a pleasure to be at this institution with about 70 years of legacy; the grand stadium that it is integral to, the rich sporting heritage with legendary alumni like Milkha Singh, Navjot Singh Sidhu etc to name a few. Got to know that their students this year also have won laurels in sixteen different sports at the national level.

The institution is keenly  looking forward to becoming a full-fledged boarding school, that will enable them to make the whole environment an exciting 24 X 7 learning space. I too am looking forward to my next workshop at YPS, as much as Mr Stanley and the school leadership want me to.

I am waiting for the feedback forms to reach me from Bharat, the CL warrior at Patiala, who, in the first place, was instrumental in pulling me to the workshop at YPS. I am glad that Bharat did. It has been a very enriching experience learning during the workshop as well as visiting every nook and corner of the YPS, inhaling the air and imbibing the spirit of excellence it stands for!

Mama, Papa…. there is nothing in my bag today!

This rabbit does not eat carrot! …. how come?

Today I did my math and science,

I toasted bread,

I halved and quartered,

I counted, measured, used my eyes,

and ears and head.

I added and subtracted on the way,

I used a magnet, blocks and memory tray,

I learnt about a rainbow and how to weigh.

So please. don’t say, anything in your bag today?

How to paint my fence!

You see I am sharing as I play,

I learned to listen and speak clearly when I talk,

to wait my turn, and when inside, to walk.

To put my thoughts into a phrase,

to guide a crayon through a maze,

To find my name and write it down,

to do it with a smile and not a frown.

To put my painting brush away,

so please don’t say, what, nothing in your bag today?

What fun building my own home!

I have learnt about a snail and a worm,

remembering how to take my turn,

Helped a friend when he was stuck,

learnt that water runs off a duck,

I looked at words from left to right,

agreed to differ, not to fight.

So please don’t say, did you only play today?

 – Anonymous

Early Childhood Education – School Leadership Conferences – Facilitating and Reflecting

Early Childhood Education - School Leadership Conference

Last couple of months have seen me crisscrossing the country to facilitate this conference in multiple cities and a few more are lined up in the coming weeks. Though I have been involved in creating and anchoring workshops for parents, adults, mentors and educational leaders in the early childhood space for over a decade, one for the school leadership has definitely been a challenging one, always.

The top most of these challenges is that of creating eagerness in the school leaders to just come together to share their learning while being open to learning from others. Though we, as school and education leaders, are looked up to create and nurture learning, most of us have an ‘aura’ about ourselves and think that ‘we are the be all and end all’. Learning has agenda does not exist. We ‘Impart Knowledge’!

I have always been looking at opportunities to learn, whether through books and web, or attending these learning fora and conferences wherein just listening to someone’s sharing adds richness to my thoughts and ideas. The personal interactions add so much more. Anchoring and facilitating has added immensely to my learning. The beauty of facilitating a session is in observation and reflection. So much emerge out of the interactions among the participants, as a facilitator I just need to put those together with a couple of ideas to reach out to everyone. It gives a sense of dejavu for almost every one.

I feel delighted and also satisfied when at the end of my workshops the participants – parents, mentors or school leaders – come and share how they identified themselves with the issues or examples that I raised or shared. It is just about our ability to observe happenings around us closely, empathize with the situation, relate to them and imbibe the learning and essence, while also being good at expressing the way others can identify with it.

So much more to learn and so much more to share and do to reach out to every parent and adult to make a small difference to every child around us, who are young leaders of today capable of impacting the world of tomorrow.

Significance of Art Education in early childhood and school life – Guru Geeta Chandran

Guru Geeta Chandran demonstrating a few finer elements of dance

I got a call from one of my friends, Sanjay, who after working in NDTV for a while has moved into being an independent film maker focused on making films on girl child. Sanjay wanted to have two young dancers, Mallika and Nandu, daughter and niece respectively, to be part of the short film. I was supposed to be reach the location for the shoot, Shiv Nadar School in Noida by 9:30am. When I reached with the children, I got a call from Sanjay that the shooting unit is behind schedule and they will be able to reach only by 10:30.

As I had time, I thought of meeting my good old friends Col Gopal Karunakaran, the operational head of the Shiv Nadar school chain as well as the principal of the Noida campus, Ms Shashi Banerjee who were in the campus. To my pleasant surprise, that was the first day of the new academic year and the teachers from both the campuses of Shiv Nadar school were in their Noida campus for the inaugural session of the teachers training week. Shashi met me in the corridor and ushered me into the lift, inviting me for the session and was delighted to see Padmasri Geeta Chandran heading to session.

The hall was full with teachers and I found a quiet place at the back of the hall and settled on the floor next to a short table to listen to Geetaji. After the initial lamp lighting and pleasantries, Geetaji addressed the audience, about ‘significance of art education in the life of a child and how to facilitate’. She spoke from her heart. She is an eloquent speaker and does not mince any words when she has to.

I tried to recall her interactions, to reproduce here in her own words…. also added a few photos that I captured..

a. Arts and aesthetics bring sensitivity to human being. It builds tolerance, empathy and concern towards fellow beings and the nature around us. In the current context these are very important and need of the hour.

b. I remember going to concerts at the age of two. I have been very fortunate to have parents who took pains to expose us to these finer things very early in life. And I was introduced to dance at the age of 5.

c. In those days LP records were the norm. We used to listen to those 30 songs every day. As a child we knew the lyrics, raga and everything to do with the song. It was reinforced every day.

d. For the current generation, such a thing will set boredom soon. They want newness all the time. Technology changing ever fast, with that the youth is fickle.

e. We, as teachers, have a great role to play in the life of a child. Our words make or mar the child. In fact, what we say is the last word when the children are in early school. Our impact cannot be easily measured.

f. Art education is marginalized in schools, so are the art teachers. It comes under extra-curricular!! Subject teachers do not want to understand the significance of arts. And it is also true that the arts teachers do not mind about other subjects! Collaborating is the key. How do we integrate the curriculum? Very few schools are working upon.

g. We need to create energy in the class, especially when the space itself is challenging and we have to cater to huge numbers in the classes simultaneously.

h. It is very important how we connect with the children. How we communicate and share without compromising on the aesthetic expression. Building that emotional connect is the key.

i. When you want to buy a dress, you go to 100 shops to select, when it comes to arts you decide the very first instance.

j. Singers have a variety of styles to keep the audience interested – kajri, thumri, tharana…dancers too need to incorporate. When I was in 20s, I started incorporating Meera Bhajans etc to get the audience interested.

k. Yes, I do agree that we need to push the frontiers of art, need to understand the demands of the day and respond. But, the demand has gone to other extreme, now. People come and ask me that I need to perform in 40mts and that they want a few that are in their wish list!

l. As part of the committee at NCERT, to rejuvenate art education, a lot have been researched and suggested. NCF (national curriculum framework) talks about these. The implementation in schools is nowhere near what has been suggested. Very few school leaders take the initiative. We need to do it in every school to make it part of life, to help every child grow into a responsible citizen with sensitivity towards everyone else.

Let me wind up with a short demonstration to help one understand Lord Shiva, and his celestial existence…

Significance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta Chandran
Significance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta Chandran
Significance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta ChandranSignificance of Art Education in early childhood and schools - Guru Geeta Chandran

If you found the article interesting, then make sure you share with others. Use the buttons downunder to pass the article on and also leave your invaluable feedback. Thanks. Sreeni@careerlauncher.com

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