26 November 2011

Samskrit classrooms and Seshaachaarryulu

This afternoon I happened to watch 'Gyan Dharshan' programme telecast by the Educational Broadcasting Division of our National TV. It was a Samskrit language class for high school students. Though I am not well versed in the language, I like the language very much and follow the contents to whatever extent possible, because the language evokes a spiritual feeling in me.  

As any good classroom, this classroom also consisted of interested children and a dedicated teacher engaged in meaningful interactions (unlike in most school classroom settings in which curricular subjects are taught with the only aim of achieving `marks' in the `Board exams').

But paradoxically, when students answered their teacher's questions, they did so without following the most fundamental manners of getting up from their seats.
This problem is not due to the teacher or the taught; it is due to media personnel who  are not qualified to assess classroom quality from a proper perspective.

I think that stakeholders involved in production  of such programs should ensure that all requirements of quality are met before our local programmes are aired.

The best language teacher (and a poet) whom I have ever met is Mr Seshaachaaryulu (fondly known as `Thitta kavi'). He taught Telugu and Samskrit at a high school where I also worked. Whenever he taught samskrit, his classes sounded like temples.

I remember quality rich Friday evenings which I spent with this nice gentleman at his home (located a few kilometres away from Vijayawada) and the inexplainable joy which I derived by having the Darshan of deities in the Sree Rama temple, puja activities of which I think, are performed by him or by his male relatives.

I also remember his taking me to visit nearby Kondapalli village, known for its traditionally  hand made dolls. It is also an unforgettable experience.

A Kondapalli doll

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About Me

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Chennai, Tamilnadu, India
I am a retired K-12 Education Management Professional. I have worked at different levels in K-12 school systems, textbook publishing, elearning and Education NGOs. I have held memberships in The Association for Science Education (UK), American Association of Physics Teachers and The Malaysian Institute of Physics. I hold a 1st class B Sc Degree in Physics followed by B Ed [English and Physical Science] and M A [Childcare and Education] degrees. My published works include 59 articles in teacher development magazines in India and the US and a book entitled `Creative Classrooms and Child Friendly Schools' (listed in Amazon). This book is almost an anecdotal account of my professional experience in six countries (including Cambodia where I worked as Technical Adviser to the Ministry of Education, Youth And Sports). I served as mentor in the Certificate of Teaching Mastery Program offered by Teachers Without Borders.