TAMIL NADU

Science in schools

Sir, — This refers to the editorial "Get the science right in schools" (March 23). Students should be trained to think instead of being encouraged to memorise. More observation-related activities should take place in classrooms. Field trips, inter-school science competitions, and peer group activities on concept building will help develop curiosity among youngsters.

Vure Balaiah, Mamidipally, A.P.

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Sir, — Besides restructuring the curriculum in schools, it is also important to evolve a comprehensive approach to recruit meritorious science teachers according to the norms prescribed by the UGC at the college level.

V. Bhimeswara Rao, Nidadavole, A.P.

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Sir, — Fields such as music and sports attract youngsters because they can find many role models. Science has very few role models. We need dedicated scientists to fill this gap. Good practical-oriented syllabus and infrastructure in science laboratories should be made mandatory in schools and colleges. A teaching degree should be made compulsory for college teaching too.

T. Charles John Bhaskar, Chennai

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Sir, — It is a bitter truth that our science education encourages students to learn the concepts by heart without understanding them. Even our examination and evaluation systems encourage students to photocopy answers rather than to reflect their understanding of the concepts. Students should be encouraged to conduct live science exhibitions especially in rural areas.

S.K. Seeralan, Tiruchi, T.N.

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Sir, — Higher secondary course has switched the emphasis to memory-based learning, making science a dreary affair. Children love to know about nature and its manifestations, but our classrooms do not provide them any opportunity.

The Vikram Sarabhai Community Science Centre and similar science centres have developed self-learning science kits. If only such kits are supplied to all schools and used by the children, there will be a positive change in the learning of science. S.S. Rajagopalan,

Chennai

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