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Paradigm Shift in Teaching

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Avnita Bir,
Principal, R N Podar School, Mumbai

Teachers, parents and students have to be made equal partners in personalised learning

In India, where classrooms have 50 children, providing personalised and differentiated learning is a huge challenge for the teachers.  For personalised learning to happen, the child’s needs and aspirations have to be considered. Learning has to be made relevant,  meaningful and authentic for the learner. The ownership of learning has to shift from teachers and parents to the children.
In R N Podar School, we have implemented differentiated learning by using flipped classrooms. We have collaborated with Khan Academy and the students can watch free videos at their own space  and time. The students then engage in interaction, discussion and  activities pertaining to the concept in the classroom. The performance of the teachers and students is monitored through the dashboard. In flipped classrooms, the teacher engages herself in meaningful, relevant and authentic activities with the students.
The challenges faced in flipped classrooms is that teachers do not trust the children to come prepared with the lessons and teachers are also not used to being questioned in the classrooms. A different approach of holding discussions and planning activities has to be done before hand. The children have to be made equal partners in this learning process where they come prepared by going through the videos.
ICT plays a major role in the new learning process as teachers are now making their own videos and sharing them with the children. A  major paradigm shift has to happen in the way of teaching and teachers, parents and students have to be made equal partners in the  learning process. This pilot project is a proof of the fact that we have been successful in making our students responsible and mature with high order thinking.

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