Friday, January 29, 2010

Join me in the classrooms of tomorrow

Was reminiscing my classroom days when i was reading about Reverse Innovation and Black Swans today and wondered about a the future classrooms of tomorrow (the modern versions of the classrooms of yore) when you pick up a topic and find something to learn about it coz you just want to and stumbled upon this site. Join me here at WIZIQ if you feel classrooms were fun....

Sunday, January 10, 2010

3 Idiots and my two pennies

I had thought of blogging this right after i saw the movie on xmas day but various things kept happening over the new year holiday. Anyways here we are - After the entire world and his cousin has written about 3 idiots and already got all angles covered.

The movie itself is entertainer in its own right albeit filled with all the standard jokes of our college ragging days. The message is quite loud and clear - Education for knowledge sake and not for social status sake. However the movie is at least a generation too late. Today's generation already know this and are definitely not thinking (I hope i'm right in this assumption!!!) that my son/daughter is growing up to be an engineer/doctor the day they are born. So that takes away the education for social status sake point out of the picture. Now comes the more pertinent Education for Knowledge sake point.

This is where the current Indian education system comes under fire. I was part of the education system which teaches children that only by securing in 99.99 percentile were you going to be anywhere near successful. I know everyone blames parents and teachers for putting this in the kids heads this from the day they join school but its not really their fault. They just wanted the best of their kids - and the best in that society meant you had to be in the 99.99 percentile to be an achiever. However I hope this movie points out finally for our generation that this is not the criteria of a successful student.

Everyone knows in their hearts that you become successful only if you have the passion for the field you choose to be successful in. In my opinion 17 is unfortunately too young an age for us to decide what is our passion for most of us. As we are too busy being sponge for all sorts of information and have still not categorized it all in our heads. As some modern philosopher has said there will be a million things that catch our eyes but only a few things that catch our hearts...Pursue them

If we really want our kids to be able to decide what they want to do with the rest of thier lives and not churn our pseudo engineers and by the rote doctors then I think there should be atleast a year or two in between school and college where they get to try and experiment with what they have learnt and find out which is the area that captures their hearts. I would say two years of a real pre college where there are no marks crazy system but 100's of careers as options for kids to take a semester in atleast 4 options with real hands on exposure.

I know a lot of people out there would say this could be done in the final years of school but I feel til 17 its best if they remain the pure sponges for all sort of knowledge out there to have a better perspective to choose those 4 -5 options.

If after this they choose their respective professional courses in arts, pure sciences, engineering, medicine etc I believe we will then be really producing again students of old. Yeah I did mean students of in atleast 500 years old time where the word "Career" needn't exist in the dictionary and we took up jobs based purely on our passion.

So will the education system and parents of today be willing to take this bold step and "waste" 2 years of their kids having an hands on experience of what they would like to do with their lives is the main question I would raise and in its answer lies the answer to Education for Knowledge sake's question.

....And btw Aamir would have been killed in a real college if he tried to electrocute his senior while ragging :-D