Hrdayakumari: Teacher incomparable


For Hrdayakumari learning was not something one does from 9.30 a.m. to 3.30 p.m.

An affable teacher who catalysed quality in her students, a cultural figure who never shied away from expressing her opinion and one who never used decibels to definitely win an argument. This was what cultural Kerala and the capital city lost in the death on Saturday of litterateur B. Hrdayakumari.

Even as she set about reshaping the credit and semester system, she was very clear that the relationship between and teacher and a student should go much beyond a class test there and a presentation here. Not for her the chopping up of a subject to answer the requirements of a degree education system which she felt was never suited to Kerala.

To everyone who met her in connection the work of her committee — constituted by the Kerala State Higher Education Council — she would pose these questions; “where is the time in the credit and semester system for students of think?”, “where is the space to be themselves, derive joy from learning?”

These questions and the depth of reasoning they exhibited often came as a surprise to some who expected age to wither her.

All this apart, Prof. Hrdayakumari often confessed to being sad about the lack of commitment displayed by teachers and students. Never for her was teaching about periods, test papers or about getting marks in examinations. Nor was learning something one does from 9.30 a.m. to3.30 p.m. What she did was mould with unbridled commitment and passion the raw material that reached her year after year at college.

In death as in life Prof. Hrdayakumari would surely be the source of inspiration direct and indirect for her students.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 9:34:49 PM |

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