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Home / Chandigarh / Need to connect learning with life

Need to connect learning with life

Sharing her views, this principal states that her biggest challenge is the fight to eradicate inequity. There are many students whose only chance at a better life is by receiving quality education.

chandigarh Updated: Aug 02, 2019, 15:05 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Sunita Babu, principal, The Lakewood School, Ludhiana
Sunita Babu, principal, The Lakewood School, Ludhiana

Sharing her views, this principal states that her biggest challenge is the fight to eradicate inequity. There are many students whose only chance at a better life is by receiving quality education. On unique programmes for the all round holistic development of students, she says they have a reading programme which helps children develop reading from the age of 4. They collaborate with music maestros’ Pt Shubhendra Rao and Saskia Rao De Haas, to implement a music programme which helps develop aesthetic sensibilities in a child at a tender age. Your most interesting moment as the principal of The Lakewood School and biggest challenge ? The most interesting moment is of a day when a new student joined us in Class 6. He came up to me to say that he did not like his house t-shirt colour and wanted to change it. I motivated him to join the house and work for its growth. Today, he is its vice-captain. The biggest challenges faced by leaders today is the fight to eradicate inequity. There are many students whose only chance at a better life is by receiving quality education.

Your most interesting moment as the principal of The Lakewood School and biggest challenge ?

The most interesting moment is of a day when a new student joined us in Class 6. He came up to me to say that he did not like his house t-shirt colour and wanted to change it. I motivated him to join the house and work for its growth. Today, he is its vice-captain. The biggest challenges faced by leaders today is the fight to eradicate inequity. There are many students whose only chance at a better life is by receiving quality education.

What helps you identify a talented student or leadership material?

It is the school’s responsibility to bring out the hidden potential of each child and turn it in to a skill. Each student has tremendous potential to attain unprecedented highs in life.

Do you believe students should be labelled ‘mediocre’ or ‘average’?

Labelling students limits their potential and makes them feel miserable. Each child has a special talent, which the school needs to identify. Everyone is a genius in their own way.

What should schools do to stop students from indulging in substance abuse?

The school can inculcate a sense of responsibility in the student towards self. A bond of trust with parents and teachers gives a student the confidence to share everything with them. Besides this, consistent awareness initiatives and parent-school communication can help arrest substance abuse.

One school community outreach project that you are proud of ?

In my first stint as a leader, I worked with a school in the rural belt of Punjab. I was aggrieved to see pervasive economic inequalities and decided to reach out to NRIs visiting their villages. In the next seven years many students got adopted for education by the NRIs.

Initiatives schools should take to help students develop an interest in science, mathematics, humanities or research?

We need to connect learning with life. Every concept of science and math should be made tangible for the students to grasp them. STEM education actively focusses on a student centred learning environment. They engage in questioning, problem solving, collaboration and activities while they address real life issues.

At what age do youngsters start firming up career plans? What should schools do to encourage them to explore newer avenues?

A vast majority of students are not clear about their future course in academics. Class 8 onwards, aptitude tests and career counselling should be initiated to help the students find their focus and work towards achieving it. The onus is on schools to familiarise students with career choices and arrange interactions with experts from those fields.

Do teachers have to double up as counsellors for personal and academic advice to students?

Teachers in present times need to become counsellors. In older times, with joint family structures, we had role models at home who inspired the future generations. In nuclear families, with working parents, children need guides and mentors in their teachers as role model.

Does your school have any unique programme for all-round holistic development of students?

We have a reading programme which helps children develop reading from the age of 4. Reading develops their vocabulary and nurtures a healthy thought process. Our school, in collaboration with music maestros’ Pt Shubhendra Rao and Saskia Rao De Haas, is implementing a music programme which helps develop aesthetic sensibilities in a child at a tender age.

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