EZ Vidya organised a conference for school leaders on the theme ‘Creating 21st century learning Environments — Transforming schools in 5 distinct areas’.
Speaking on the occasion Chitra Ravi, founder and CEO, EZ Vidya pointed out some of the challenges faced by schools. “Today’s learners have a considerably low attention span and are hooked to gadgets during most of their waking time. This apart, today’s careers and lifestyle demand different and diverse skills from individuals,” she said.
In this context she pointed out that it is imperative for schools to create a learning environment to meet these needs. “In the last decade, educationists the world over have conducted extensive research to get solutions to address these challenges, which is collectively referred to as 21st Century Education. There is substantial consensus among educationists that transformation needs to happen in the five broad areas which are student thinking, classroom dynamics, learning ambience, technology integration and teacher empowerment to effectively address these challenges. Incidentally, the research conducted by EZ Vidya on the current educational scenario in India showed a striking correlation between the five areas of transformation identified by educationists the world over and the challenges faced by a majority of schools across India,” she said.
“For instance,” she remarked, “our research showed that 81 per cent school heads felt that rote learning was the biggest reason for lowering the standard of the students passing out of schools. Developing higher order thinking skills in students is the solution to this.”
Quoting another example from the research, she said, “78 per cent of principals agreed that student participation in the class enhances performance. However, most of those principals expressed that it was a big challenge to get all students involved in the learning process. Creating a 21st century learning environment in schools is a key means to overcome the above challenges because it empowers school heads, teachers, and parents to deliver quality education to today’s students,” she said.
Chitra unveiled ‘Chrysalis’ a pioneering product that brings 21st century education to over 700 schools across India. She dwelt at length upon ‘Visible Transformation Areas for Schools’ aspiring for quality learning. In Tamil Nadu alone about 250 schools have decided to give Chrysalis a try.
About 200 participants spent a lot of time at the ‘Subject Corners’ displayed at the venue. The ‘Math around us’ corner showed teachers an entirely different way to teach math. Math is not about boring numbers, rather it is experienced in our daily lives and is a lot more meaningful and fun. One of the models demonstrated how a basketball court in a school can be used to teach students key concepts in geometry such as circumference and area. There were similar corners set up for science, social and English which brought out pedagogic elements specific to the subjects in a tangible manner. The subject corners were picked from Chrysalis, to demonstrate how contemporary pedagogy can be made fun while effectively enhancing learning outcomes.