Directions to Teachers: How to observe students and how to guide students −
Some special hints that result from the application of methods of psychological and value- oriented development are suggested here :
(a) It may first be noted that good many children are under the influence of inner psychic presence which shows itself very distinctly at times in their spontaneous reactions and even in their words. All spontaneous turning to love, truth, beauty, knowledge, nobility, heroism is sure sign of the psychic influence.
(a) To recognize these reactions and to encourage them wisely and with a psychic feeling would be the first indispensable step.
(b) The best qualities to develop in children are:
sincerity perseverance honesty peace straightforwardness calm cheerfulness self-control courage self-mastery disinterestedness truth patience harmony endurance liberty
(c) These qualities are taught infinitely better by examples than by beautiful speeches.
(d) The undesirable impulses and habits should not be treated harshly. The child should not be scolded. Particularly, care should be taken not to rebuke a child for a fault which
(e) one commits oneself. Children are very keen and clear-sighted observers; they soon find out the educator's weaknesses and note them without pity.
(f) When a child makes a mistake, one must see that he confesses it to the teacher or the guardian spontaneously and frankly; and when he has confessed it he should be made to understand with kindness and affection what was wrong in the movement and that he should not repeat it. A fault confessed must be forgiven.
(g) The child should be encouraged to think of wrong impulses not as a sign of offences but as symptoms of a curable disease alterable by a steady and a sustained effort of the will falsehood being rejected and replaced by truth, fear by courage, selfishness by sacrifice, malice by love.
(h) Great care should be taken to see that unformed virtues are not rejected as faults. The wildness and recklessness of many young natures are only the overflowing of excessive strength, greatness and nobility.
(i) An affection that is firm yet gentle, clearly, and sufficiently practical knowledge will create bonds of trust that are indispensable for the educator to make the education of a child effective.
(j) When a child asks question, he should not be answered by saying that it is stupid or foolish, or that the answer will not be understood by him. Curiosity cannot be postponed, and an effort must be made to answer questions truthfully and in such a way as to make the answer comprehensible to his mental capacity.
(k) The teacher should ensure that the child gradually begins to be aware of the psychological centre of his being, the psychic being, the inner seat of the highest truth of our existence.
(l) With that growing awareness, the child should be taught to concentrate on this presence and make it more and more a living fact.
(m) The child should be taught that whenever there is an inner uneasiness, he should not pass it off and try to forget it, but should attend to it, and try to find out by an inner observation the cause of the uneasiness, so that it can be removed by inner or other methods.
(b) The second aspect, which is related to interdisciplinary presentation, demands a larger point of view. Every subject has connections with a number of other subjects, and the quality of education improves when the teacher is able to relate a given topic with topics in other disciplines, and when the teacher can place a given topic in the prospective of the vast or holistic universe of discourse.
There is, today, a great tension in the education system, which arises from two apparently opposing tendencies. The first tendency counsel us, to provide to students wider and wider perspective. The second tendency is to to lead the student, as soon as possible, to become a specialist and thus to narrow down the focus of the study, Both tendencies are useful, but when we try to synthesize these two tendencies, we arrive at a kind of a compromise, which is quite injurious to the psychological health of the learner. In the interest of widening the horizon of knowledge, we tend to prescribe increasing number of subjects, and in the interest of specialization, we tend to put in the curriculum of each subject unbearably high load of contents.
Education thus tends to be a more and burdensome, and when this system is examination-oriented, students tend to study by taking recourse to memorizing instead of patience process of understanding and comprehending.
Quality improvement demands a satisfactory solution to this problem.
Structural changes in the curriculum as also methodological changes are required to effect actually satisfactory solution. In the mean time, however, a new programme of quality improvement can be suggested in this context, and this programme would consist of creating a room for one hour per week during which special lectures could be arranged in connection with what can be described as a Course in General Knowledge. This General Knowledge Course could serve as an introduction to a Paper, which is generally included in the Civil Service Examinations conducted by Public Service Commissions in connection with testing a candidate's familiarity with important domains of knowledge, public affairs, and important events of Indian History and World History. In addition to this, it may also be suggested that during this proposed hour, the education institutions can present to the students varieties of programmes of educational films, dramas, story-telling, dance programmes, music programmes and programmes connected with elocution, recitation and appreciation of poetry. Programmes of demonstration of interesting and instructive experiments relating to physics, chemistry and biology also could be included. Programmes that would stimulate explorations, discoveries and inventions could also be conceived and presented.