A novel method of teaching

A primary school teacher in a village near Thuraiyur prepares letters of the alphabet, shapes and other learning material from dosa batter and roti dough to teach children. It is a method of visual learning that parents of her students can afford, she says.

Students of the Panchayat Union Primary School, Melakunnupatti, have missed 18 months of learning. There are 34 students enrolled in the school, of which some of them have never seen a classroom or a teacher. While online classes are not a viable option for these students whose parents are daily wage labourers, the government’s Kalvi TV too has not proved to be helpful.

For students of Class 1, the video classes are aired at 1 p.m. ‘Most houses do not have TV sets. If any, the parents do not have the funds to pay for cable connection. Wherever it is available, the children are not watching without the involvement of their parents, said Nageswari Sasikumar, a teacher at the school.

The teacher decided to use items available at each household - dosa batter and roti dough - to make letters of the Tamil and English alphabet, numbers, shapes, among other things, to teach the students. ‘I found that students who are in Class 2, ones who enrolled in the school in 2020 have not been able to pick up the basics from any other learning method. For children at that age, the teacher usually traces the letters, shows them how to write them. It is all visual and sensory, she said. She had used a similar method to make learning fun for her own daughters years ago.

While she sent videos making these alphabets and shapes to the students who have access to mobile phones, she took it with her when she visited their homes. She taught mothers to make them. She finds that involving parents has helped the students learn better.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2021 10:13:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/teaching/article37096736.ece

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