KOZHIKODE: Students of the Government Girls High School at Nadakkavu here are now eager to get into a “smart class room,” equipped with digital learning facilities. A teacher sitting 200 km away in Kochi is teaching them online, providing analysis of the questions and answers of the SSLC model examinations. The image is beamed to them live.
They are enjoying this unique learning facility since last week when it was launched on a trial basis. This week, their friends in the Government Higher Secondary School, Meenchanda, and GVHSS, Azhchavattom, also got the facility. All of them have taken lessons from Diana Johnson of Learners Scholars in Kochi.
The Government School, Balussery, has also been provided this facility, but could not join in immediately owing to a glitch in the broadband Internet connection.
Says A. Jayathilak, District Collector, Kozhikode, the person behind the initiative: “This is the first time in India that such an online tutoring system has been introduced for school students. This is a public-private partnership venture. I went to see the lab of Learners Scholars which is offering online tuitions to students in the U.S. and other countries. I thought of doing the same to school students here and they agreed to do it free of cost. A computer, a screen, a projector and a broadband Internet connection are all that a school needs to join this programme.”
To begin with, students graded D+ (a low grade of 30 to 39 per cent) and D (40 to 49 per cent) in the internal school examinations are being involved. “This would be extremely useful for those students in government schools who cannot afford to take tuitions. The discussions of SSLC model examinations will be followed by teaching of topics that the students find difficult,” says Mr. Jayathilak.
The students are excited that they could learn in the interactive mode. “It is just like a classroom,” says Mr. Jayathilak.
Says Alphonsa Mathews, an English teacher at the Nadakkavu school: “The online teaching method making use of graphics for science subjects fascinated me though I am an English teacher.”
Sai Krishna of Class X of the school says: “The classes are conducted in such a manner that the lessons are easy to understand. The methods used by the teacher were simple.
Also, we could listen to the doubts and questions raised by students of other schools in the programme and the answers to them.”
The online tutorial was beamed live on a trial basis since last Wednesday. The Physics paper of the SSLC model examinations was discussed that day. Question papers of Chemistry, Biology and English were discussed on the following days.
Mr. Jayathilak said he would be happy to involve more schools in the district which have broadband Internet connections.