Principal, Delhi International School, talks about the digital solutions that are transforming the education and pedagogies they are following at the School
As the world is becoming digitally-enabled, schools cannot be left behind. Smart boards and smart classes are the backbone of teaching-learning in almost all progressive schools in the world. The main challenge everywhere is to bring teachers to a level where our digitally-awakened kids already are.
At Delhi International School (DIS), all the classrooms are smart class enabled and teachers trained in digital communication. Having all latest equipment is as important as making teachers understand what it is to be ‘thinking digitally’ for their classroom deliverance. Many simple changes in daily school life brought wonderful results in digitization of pedagogy without formally training the teachers. Sharing below a few of those:
- Handwritten instructions/reports are not allowed, teachers and students have to type in appropriate software and mail to persons. This made everyone, including Hindi/Sanskrit teachers, learn IT skills through peer support. Creating report for self after getting pointers helped teachers to train students in their respective subject related reports.
- IT classes for students have one simple introduction of a software and the assessment of learning is done through a project done on the software related to their other subjects.
- PTM scheduled almost every month and teachers are supposed to showcase the class and school’s academics and activities through a self created presentation. Most of them take help from students who in turn train teachers in various ‘effects’ and photo edits for highlighting the events of classroom and the process creates a wonderful collaborative learning environment in classrooms. The presentation is made at a meeting a day before PTM for approval, and the style of presentation helps everyone understand the different ways and in turn they are empowered to train kids as well to research and present their ideas in various areas.
- Every lesson plan is created keeping the digital content availability and requirement for explanation of the same in best possible way, the plans are discussed in departmental meetings which has subject teachers from the entry level class to class XII. These meetings have been very successful as it leads to mutual cooperation amongst the entire team and upgradation of everyone on the same level in respective subject.
- Flipped classroom is the concept which everyone is talking about today. It certainly is the need of the hour but has to be understood completely and thoroughly before jumping on to. We have taken this slowly but steadily in the classrooms so that teachers and students should not feel jittery. We have begun with various clubs and house projects through flipped learning wherein the selected batches work under the supervision of teachers concerned, the researched content and assessment of the same is being done on smart boards. We allow students to bring their laptops to work on various projects. Teachers of senior classes have started using WhatsApp groups with their students for sharing the academics-related messages and contents with restriction of having academic coordinator in the group, who reports to me about all the activities.
- Whatsapp groups for the management level as well as with team are also in place wherein all the circulars and notices are updated instantly.
Digital world is fascinating but only if used in correct way, with clear focus on imparting immersing learning experience with everyone aware of pros and cons of misuse. It really feels nice when a fifth standard student is researching on a global warming project at home and discussing his/her findings in the class with probable solutions for the same. This is exactly what today’s education needs, the learners need not only focus on the facts but should be able to understand, think critically and look for solutions whether it is for their academics or their life. The digital era is here to stay and so are our value systems, which when combined with intelligence will take everyone forward with confidence to make this world a better place.