RSPL: Workshop Feedback

Here is a feedback of one of our workshops…

“We are extremely happy to let you know that the workshop which was conducted for one day by Ms Sindhu Eradi was good. It was a provoking session which took my teachers on a journey through their insight and made them to set some higher goals. I express my sincere thanks to Ratna Sagar for supporting our Institution.”

~ Principal, Ebenezer International Residential School & Junior College, Kerala

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Happy Independence Day!

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8 Ways to Teach Compassion to Kids

Here are many ways in which you can teach compassion to your kids.

Visit the link.

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18 July – Nelson Mandela Day

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s vision for the future was a society grounded on change, hard work, integrity, tolerance and friendship. We have to carry this legacy forward.

Here are some excerpts from Mandela’s book The Long Walk to Freedom published in 1995. We should always keep these words of wisdom in our minds.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

“A good head and good heart are always a formidable combination. But when you add to that a literate tongue or pen, then you have something very special.”

“There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.”

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Workshop Feedback

Here is a feedback received for our trainer Mr Vivek Kumar who conducted a workshop on ‘Exploring Opportunities’ at SBDAV School, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi. Teachers from all the branches of DAV Delhi & NCR participated in this workshop.

“It was such a pleasure to have you as spokesperson for our workshop. I could feel that you could mesmerise our teachers by your talk and presentation. We could feel the connect you made with the teachers. It was a treat for all of us at Surajbhan DAV School.

I have learnt a lot of things from your address, may god give success in all your future presentations, and looking forward for more for teachers and students. Please convey my heartfelt thanks to Ratna Sagar for organising such a wonderful workshop for our teachers.”

~ Ms Neera Kohli
Principal, SBDAV School

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How students respond to teachers

Would you empathize with students who made the following remarks?

- I loved history because my teacher told us many stories.
- I hated history because my teacher made us read out from the book.
- I hated physics because I always got all my readings wrong.
- I loved chemistry because my teacher made it easy for us to remember symbols and their valencies and how to write formulae very easily.
- I loved geography because my teacher used maps, charts and models.
- I hated maths because my teacher said that it was not enough that I was good in English.
- I loved my PT classes because my teacher encouraged my interest in swimming.

What do children want?

They definitely want to

- learn new things – facts, concepts, how to do something.
- understand why they are learning something.
- be taught in a way that they can learn.
- to learn where they are wrong and tips on how to avoid them.
- engage multiple senses and skills in learning.
- listen, see, hear, touch, read, write, practise, do, create.
- be encouraged and be accepted as they are.

Let’s keep this in mind – Children love to learn, but hate to be taught!

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Story of English

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 had a far-reaching effect on the English language. After the Conquest, English remained the language of the country but Norman French became the language of the government, church and law courts. As a result a lot of French words were assimilated into the English language. Legal terms such as plaintiff, privilege and defendant; religious terms such as grace, service and miracle; and many other terms used in day-to-day life such as lamp, basin, castle and tower came into the language. The English language was immensely enriched by the absorption of these words. In the middle of the fourteenth century, many French words that had been used only by the upper classes became an integral part of the English language.
Geoffrey Chaucer (1342-1400), symbolizes the Middle Ages. Some of his prominent works are The Legend of Good Women, Troilus and Criseyde and The Canterbury Tales. A number of French words are found in Chaucer’s vocabulary. Chaucer uses the French method of regular metre and end-rhymes. As some pilgrims make their way from Southwark to Canterbury, each of them tell a tale to pass the time. The stories are as diverse as the narrators.
A good wife was there of biside bathe,
But she was somedeel deef, and that was scathe.
Of cloth-making she hadde swich an haunt,
She passed hem of Ypres and of Gaunt.
In all the parish wife ne was there noon
That to the offring before hir shold goon-
And if there did, certain so wroth was she
That she was out of alle charitee.
(The Canterbury Tales)

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How do you help students to answer questions?

Do not interrupt. Let the student complete the answer. If nothing works, then give the answer yourself and ask the student to restate the answer.
If that does not help, then rephrase the question. Do not ask another student to answer and ask the student to repeat the answer.
Break up the question into small parts. Encourage the student. Do not humiliate the student for not knowing the answer.
Restate the question. The whole process should not take too much time, about 15 seconds. Or else, the class may become inattentive.
Simplify the question. Give hints.
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Happy Birthday Ruskin Bond!

Happy Birthday Ruskin Bond!

Ratna Sagar conveys regards and best wishes to the legendary poet, author and writer.

We thank you for being an inspiration to millions and for showing us the beauty of nature through your magical stories and poems!

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Adolescence: All About Change

Adolescence: All About Change

Several overlapping topics fall under the rather large umbrella of adolescent psychology. All of these have to do with ‘change’, which seems to be the key word for this phase of life. Of course, all of childhood is a period of tremendous growth and change, and we adults would like to feel that we are changing too! Yet the sheer rate and irregularity of changes make adolescence, in particular, a unique developmental stage. Adolescence is characterized by:

  • hormonal and other chemical changes in the body
  • changes in physical appearance which are sudden and obvious to others, signalling sexual maturity
  • emotional changes such as increased excitement, anxiety, elation, depression
  • new behaviour patterns such as aggression, taking risks, seeking thrills
  • new psychological issues such as seeking a sense of identity, rebelling against authority, having romantic interests, increased self-consciousness, greater dependence on peers
  • social changes such as desiring and being given more autonomy and independence
  • cognitive changes, whether quantitative or qualitative, that allow for significantly higher levels of learning and understanding
  • hormonal and physical changes, and the sexual awakening they signal, are a powerful set of forces

These are universal physical markers of adolescence, and, to a great extent, the emotional and behavioural effects they have, might be expected to be similar across cultures.

How can we deal with all these changes?

Give your students more real responsibilities.

  • Get adolescents to be responsible not only for their own learning but also for things outside themselves. Allow for the importance of friendships among adolescents. Many of us adults regard such friendships with mild suspicion, and some schools have a policy of deliberately breaking up friendships each year by changing the class composition. As teachers, we often have a tendency to ‘separate’ friends, and we may have sound reasons for this. But we risk alienation if we deny the importance of peer relationships, and further, we are denying the benefits of the peer group to a student’s emotional life.

Don’t use comparative evaluation.

  • Our whole system of education in India is based on performance and comparison, right from a very young age. Adults often tell toddlers, “Let’s see who eats faster”; “Hurry up or else we will finish first” and “See how nicely she plays-why can’t you play like her?” So when children turn into adolescents, you would think they would be used to it, impervious to the constant emphasis on comparative evaluation in almost every aspect of their lives! But it would also create a strong habit in them of evaluating themselves in comparison with others. Plenty of research shows that this is harmful to their growth and learning.

Don’t clamp down on girl-boy friendships.

  • This is possibly the hardest ‘don’t’ to follow. Sometimes we are pushed into policing, banning and disallowing any sort of contact between girls and boys. This is a mistake. We are ignoring the fact that most of the adolescent’s thoughts and feelings are directed towards physical attraction and romanceâ a natural, biological movement. Clamping down is too easy, and will not work in the long run. We must think creatively about how to manage this issue. Initiate regular dialogues in which adolescents can express themselves easily.
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