We moved from the US when my elder one was 4.5 years old. She was not going to a proper school at that time there as in the US, kindergarten starts from 6 years. After we came back to India, she started going to senior kindergarten at the age of 5. Not to mention, she found the whole thing very different and difficult. The other kids had no problem in coping with the class syllabus as they were going to school at the age of 2.5 or 3. In other words, they joined the rat race at the age when they should be playing and exploring things around them.
So, the question is – Why to push kids at such a young age?
Ok, now coming to the second part. She slowly got used to the education system in India. She was a very creative child but we observed that the pressure of studies killed her creativity. Our Indian education system is such that it expects kids to cram everything without understanding the basics.
My next question is – Why rote learning? How will only memorising long and lengthy questions help a child in the long run?
Next part is the pressure which kids feel when they go to higher grades in India. Till 7th grade, it was all ok but as soon as our daughter entered 8th grade, it all changed. As parents, we could feel the pressure along with her. Sports and recreation periods were very less and there was more pressure on academics. She worked hard and scored excellent marks in her 10th grade but what about her creativity?
So here comes my next question – Why in Indian Education system kids are pressurised in higher grades? Why are good grades a matter of life and death?
As a parent, I feel these things are a problem in our Indian education system and it’s high time we need a change-
1. Rote learning without a proper understanding of basics –
Cramming and memorising answers and just vomiting them on the answer sheet needs to be changed. Our kids are not gaining anything by just memorising. More focus should be on basics.
2. Undue pressure –
Every other day we hear many cases of kids taking extreme steps as they were not able to perform well in studies. Parents and teachers have to make it a point to explain it to the kids that it’s ok if you get fewer marks and it’s not the end of the world. Any kind of pressure on kids never helps rather it just makes them nervous and lose the sight of focus.
Also, read an open letter to pushy parents.
3. Let them be creative –
Do you still think that doctor and engineer are the only two fields in India? I agree they are the most lucrative fields but maybe not the most satisfactory. There are many different fields and let your child decide on their own. Do guide them but don’t pressurise them. Extracurricular activities are given a back seat as they are not going to help a child to get admission into IIT JEE or medical. If you see foreign universities, they focus on what extra a child has done other than studies but sadly it’s not the case in India.
4. Early schooling –
2.5 or 3 is not the age when they should be sitting and learning but it’s the age when they play, explore and learn on their own. I remember one incident when my elder one was 2 years old and we were in India for a short break. She started going to a play school just for 2 hours. My aim was to let her go and play with other kids as there were not many kids in our neighborhood. But after few days she refused to go the school and the reason was that teachers were forcing her to sit and learn numbers, alphabets and names of months etc. when all she wanted was to play. Can you blame a two-year-old child for not sitting and focussing?
5. Focus on grades and report cards
Getting good grades is the only criteria for an Indian child to do anything in life. Instead of asking a child – What do you think of your marks or How do you think you can improve? They ask – Did you get the highest marks in that subject? Or how many kids scored higher than you? It’s time to change the focus. I know limited seats in good colleges add on to extra pressure as most of the seats are reserved for other classes. But a change in the ranking system is also needed.A lack of well-rounded education and practical knowledge is missing in our Indian education system. #Education Click To Tweet
This topic is close to my heart and wanted to write about it for a long time. I feel there should be more practical learning where kids can learn with feel and touch than just cramming.
I know the things are not going to change any time soon but it’s high time we think about it and bring a change. Our system does not produce the imaginative and creative kids but it produces according to set criteria.
I know it’s not the perfect system of learning and there are many flaws. But I can see few changes happening although it’s a long way to go. It’s time to reward innovation, creativity, and originality.
I would like to hear from other parents about the Indian education system. What do you think is wrong with our system?
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My Alexa rank on 1st September is 406, 629. Hope to see it go further down with this challenge.