National curriculum proposes students to be allowed to learn from Panchatantra, Jataka tales

The document also recommended that students at all school levels should be taught India’s contribution to arts, science, social science, maths, language as well as physical education.

Published: 07th April 2023 07:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 07th April 2023 07:28 PM   |  A+A-

education , Students

Image used for representational purpose.

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The draft document of the new National Curriculum Framework (NCF) has proposed that Class 11 and 12 students be taught about both known and lesser-known figures of India’s freedom struggle.

The Silk Route, literary works of India, Greece and Syria as well as the rise of new religions and philosophies of India and China are some other lessons proposed to be added to history books from the next academic year.

Recommending the three-language formula, also emphasised in the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020, the draft document, said that students will learn at least three languages in their school years.
It also suggested reducing the fear towards math by teaching it more creatively by integrating it with arts, sports and language.

The document also recommended that students at all school levels should be taught India’s contribution to arts, science, social science, maths, language as well as physical education.

Prepared on the lines of National Education Policy 2020, which emphasises “rootedness and pride in India,” the draft document has recommended that foundational students be taught the “value of seva.”

It said that children should be allowed to read and learn from the original stories of the Panchatantra, Jataka, Hitopadesha, and other fun fables and inspiring tales from the Indian tradition. 

“Stories from the lives of great Indian heroes of history are also seen as an excellent way to inspire and introduce core values in children,” the draft, released for comments on Thursday, said.

The draft document prepared by an expert panel led by former ISRO chief K Kasturirangan has proposed that in history, students should learn the “basics of the archaeological and historical method” and learn “how to interpret early literary texts as well as material culture to produce a historical narrative.”

It also recommended that students should be introduced to both the general agricultural ecology and economy in India, as well as to the Indian Ocean trade networks as well as the overland trade routes such as the Silk Road to see how India was deeply connected to the rest of the world in these times.

On the emergence of colonial rule in India, it suggested that students should be taught from the 16th century, when the first European joint stock trading company arrived in India, to the birth of the nation-state in 1947.

It added that it should be extended from the moment of this birth to the integration of princely states and the adoption of the Constitution in 1950. 

“The course will familiarise students with the struggle between European colonial powers for control over various parts of India and the various forms of Indian resistance, including peasant and Adivasi resistance movements. The course will also introduce students to the vast administrative, educational, and social reforms that were effected during the colonial period. The final part of the course will discuss India’s freedom struggle and include not only its well-known figures but also some lesser-known figures of the struggle,” it said. 

It is well-known that social science is usually taught as a subject with predominantly rote learning of facts like dates in history, names of geographical features across the globe, the listing of fundamental rights and duties, and the naming of economic institutions. 

“The understanding of concepts is often missing in social science classrooms. This, in turn, makes students lose interest in the subject as too many facts are expected to be learnt without adequately engaging with the reasons behind learning them or the core concepts underlying those facts,” the document said.

Throughout the document, the expert panel has stressed the need to teach “values” to the children.

The document, when finalised, will set the benchmark for NCERT books taught in CBSE schools. The education ministry has already announced that new NCERT textbooks revised by the new National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 will be introduced in schools from the 2024-25 academic session. 


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp