Game of Educating!

Have you ever wondered, why education has just become a means for attaining good marks, which in turn gets you a so called good job thereafter? And the education providers a business for churning out mechanical robots day-in-day-out.

After all education was never meant to be a business and a factory for generating the above, it was meant to lead to creation of responsible and sensible individuals who could, after growing up, make rational and sensible decisions, guiding the world towards a sustainable and joyful place to live in.

The question that arises is whether that’s happening? And if not, what needs to be done to ensure that it happens? Very valid questions indeed and we do have an answer, though it might not go down well with the herd mentality of trying to make millions of dollars, yet can have an immense impact on the way people perceive education in a holistic manner.

Before we get into the dynamics of how it can be achieved, let us take a pause to understand what it means for a kid. Kids are born with inherent curiosity, which they express in so called constructive or destructive ways, yet one thing that should not be taken away from them is a zeal to ask questions.

Shouldn’t our education system be encouraging questions and enabling the curiosity to flourish among kids?

Once the curiosity take its own course, kids are bound to find answers to the same, be it asking their elders (parents, siblings, teachers) or seeking it for themselves, be it internet, any chat bot or other means of digital access.

Coming to our role as adults is to provide kids an environment and assets through which they can explore this wonderful world, ask us questions when they feel like and get the answers to the same or a guidance as to where they would be able to find the answers to the same, the latter being the preferred modus operandi, as it leads to self-exploration and building a confidence to explore.

Having said the above, there are many aspects to providing this environment, especially in the current scheme of things (assuming the kids are able to come to a school, though there are other aspects of how to bring underprivileged kids to the same which encompasses mid-day meal programs etc.):

number-demolition-11-20

 

  • Physical Infrastructure

 

      1. Classrooms (black/white boards, chalk/marker, chairs, tables, lights etc.)
      2. Toilets
      3. Playground (garden, trees)
      4. Projector
      5. Computer
      6. Science Labs (chemicals etc.)
      7. Staff room

 

  • Learning Material

 

      1. Text Books/E-Books (in every language)
      2. Videos (in-person/animation) (in every language)
      3. Experiment kits (aligned to concepts and real life examples) which kids can play with, relate to and learn from the same
      4. Tools equipped with AR/VR

 

  • Teachers

 

      1. Friendly, learned enablers having teaching aides (digital and physical) who promote the culture of openness and asking questions

 

  • Parents

 

    1. Acting as enablers off the school campus, giving children an opportunity to explore

The very idea to create an exploration environment equipped with technology and other fundamental assets to make the learning process a joyful experience is what one would want to aspire for when it comes to developing that all important vision of educating the next generation.

The learning process needs to be made joyful and easily understandable which means presenting concepts etc. in a manner in which the kid would want to receive it as, which in turn means that we need to have a fair understanding of what would be received well by different kids of different levels of understanding and the matter or the material being designed in accordance to the same.

Does that mean that the grades need to be rethought and regrouped into a fundamental parameter, such as level of understanding?

If that’s the case, can the concepts be organized per se according to the levels of understanding and not grades?

Does it also translate into different explanations/pedagogy for the same concept for different levels of understanding that kids might have?

After all, a concept is grade agnostic and the very assumption that the kids of a certain grade wouldn’t comprehend a particular aspect of life is derogatory in itself.

It’s like putting the kids into unwanted boundations and making them believe of the very limitations which don’t really exist.

Strong need to rethink upon how education can be made:

Relatable (to what one sees around oneself),

Realistic (based upon pure observation),

Simplistic (easy to understand),

Unbounded & limitless (making a conscious effort of not creating superficial boundaries in the minds of the kids)

and

most importantly Enjoyable.

Source of the image: https://www.education.com/game/number-demolition-11-20/

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Artificially Intelligent (AI) Human!

It’s kind of scary to think about the very tasks and jobs being taken away from humans by the AI world that seem to have found world-wide acceptance among the visionary thinkers.

But, if you have the time and patience to delve into the aspects a little in depth, you will realize that it’s after all not that scary.

For the world, that is being created around us, is on the basis of human limitations and not human potential.

And when we talk about human potential, we better respect the boundlessness of what it is, especially going by the ability of a human mind to find itself in use and the very limitation of the artificially intelligent human being able to do so.

Sometime back, I had written about this concept of kundalis (horoscopes) being used for determining the job-person fit for recruiting people in organizations.

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Now, certain machines are doing the same, which work on this algorithm, where in the skill sets are matched to the key words in job descriptions (JD) and there you get the perfect looking AI man all set to rock your organization and take it to the next level of sorts.

But the very assumption, that success=skill sets or is derived in some way from the same, is far from reality, as many of the HR professionals might have already encountered, their biggest worry being the attrition rate in their respective organizations.

For, if the human was as simple as a+b=c, then the world would look too predictive and robotic in that sense.

Good or bad, to express human capabilities in the form of an equation, no matter how complicated looking, it might be, as it turns out, the predictions made are far from what ends up being the truth.

Need to wonder upon the very foundations of the assumptions made in this regard? Rather than blindly following those assessments and perspectives given by a bunch of western philosophers or psychologists and treating it as the ultimate truth?

High time, one discards the deterministic attitude of knowing how a person might behave and high time to start treating human as a potential and not just a resource.

So, all organizations out there, if you do just the way you are doing, what you might end up getting is an AI man, who might not fulfill your vision, instead result in the creation of a dissatisfied and disheartened AI workforce.

Am sure, you wouldn’t want that. Time for change in perspective?

Source for the Image: https://philosophyofmetrics.com/the-artificial-man/

Fearing the If?

How many times have we woken up to a thought what if what we are expecting today to happen doesn’t go the way we want it to?

Be it a cricketer, who wants to score and contribute in the next IPL game to see his team through to victory,

Be it an investment banker, who wants to make that life changing deal, hoping to retire at age 40,

Be it an advertising professional, who wants to get out the most creative idea, that he has to offer to the world today,

Be it an actor, who thinks of making it big in the Bollywood industry, with his first big hit this very Friday,

Be it a doctor, who wants to successfully conduct the most complicated surgery he has ever done,

Be it a scientist, who wants to make that all important discovery, which would benefit the mankind in times to come,

Be it a student, who dreams of becoming an IAS officer and whose civil services results are supposed to be out the very day,

Be it a labourer, who is hoping to get that meal for the day, which he aspires for everyday in his life,

But no matter, how much one aspires to make this day, the most significant day of his life, there is that fear of seeing it not happening.

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Some might have lost hope, seeing the fear coming true everyday of their lives,

Some might want to maintain a so called positive demeanor, hoping the day will come sooner or later,

There are only few, who manage to come out of this fear, and start to live life, as it is supposed to be experienced and cherished.

Have you ever wondered why most of us find ourselves incapable of relieving us from this fear?

Is it because of the assets that we have accumulated over a period of time and for which we are liable to repay a huge debt?

Is it because we have this concept of a wonderful materialistic life towards which we keep putting in the hard work?

Is it because we feel we are burdened with loads of responsibilities and expectations from the near and dear ones?

Whatever might be the reason, for which we see ourselves doing what we do, day-in-day-out, have you ever wondered, whether this was how life was meant to be?

Getting up, rushing into the daily chores, running off to work, coming back late, barely having time for dinner and family, pushing off to bed, and then repeating the same everyday.

Was such the very concept of life, we were born to?

Probably not!

Life is much more than what most of us have made it into.

Isn’t it about getting up each morning from the bed of death to witness another beautiful day?

Isn’t it about getting another chance to spread the joy and make others happy around you?

Isn’t it about working towards a cause that really gets you going, aimed at making this world a wonderful place to live in?

And much more…

If you think, it is, then why not just get that fear out of your life forever and ever.

After all, one day, each one of us know, where we would end up, having realized this, don’t you think, it’s high time we say goodbye to our fears and start living!

Source for the Image: http://randalldsmith.com/fear-and-heart-health-the-letter-to-smyrna-revelation-28-11/