Guruvani: ‘Schools bound to foster students’ higher-order thinking skills’
Gurvinder Sohi, principal, The Shri Ram Universal School, Panchkula
Sharing her views, this principal says, “In today’s times, schools align education with the real world, which makes it incumbent upon educators to keep students aware of the political scene as much as other aspects of societal life.” She wants her students to be perseverant, committed and of strong character.
In these politically volatile times, should students be insulated from political upheavals? How do you educate them about the changing scenario?
As a dynamic and ever-evolving democratic nation, we will always witness intense political activity. In today’s times, schools align education with the real world, which makes it incumbent upon educators to keep students aware of the political scene as much as other aspects of societal life. However, care must be taken to keep discussions and information age-appropriate, objective, abstain from breeding prejudice or polarisation, and propagate amiable acceptance of different outlooks. Schools are duty-bound to foster students’ higher-order thinking skills that equip them to understand the world and make wise choices in the interest of the nation’s progress.
How do you inspire/motivate students to take up sports as it is a vital part of school education these days?
We have a sprawling lush green campus, nestled in the foothills, that boasts of state of the art courts and grounds. We have a well-rounded centrally drawn up curriculum for students that encourages sports as an intrinsic part of learning. Our entire indoor and outdoor sports infrastructure is utilised in the form of great learning spaces.
How do you motivate children to be ‘green citizens’?
Schools everywhere are vehemently taking steps to create environmental consciousness in children. The numerous Shri Ram schools all over the country have a designated Shri Paryavaran Programme that focuses on various initiatives to effectively imbibe in children a realisation of the planet’s plight and promote environment-friendly practices among them. We also have a strong community outreach programme, under which our students have performed ‘nukkad nataks’ at various locations on different themes such as the need to renounce the use of polybags, recycling, using water with care, and increasing green cover. The school also conducted a Zero Carbon Triathlon to encourage citizens’ support for a greener Earth.
Pedagogy is changing with leaps and bounds every year. How do you keep pace with it?
The Shri Ram Universal School provides child-centric education that is interactive and experiential. The teaching methodology is a careful mix of recent innovations and combines various approaches suited to individual learning styles. Our research and development(R&D) team and trainers at The Shri Educare Headquarters are involved in round the clock research and training to empower educators with pedagogy that keeps our teaching-learning process ahead of its times. Thus, our students are assured of the best educational practices coming their way.
Where do you see your students and this school 10 years from now?
The Shri Ram Universal School is a premier educational brand of the country to have established its presence in the tricity. It brings the distinguished legacy of The Shri Ram institutions of Delhi to this region and undoubtedly is a glorious opportunity for students of this area to acquire top-quality education at par with the best. The school, as well as its students, are bound to grow from strength to strength year after year. Our students will follow the footsteps of their illustrious seniors who pass out of The Shri Ram schools and colleges and become productive citizens adding great worth to society.
What is the toughest challenge in your profession?
Teaching is a unique profession as it is more than an occupation based on specific expertise or skills. It transcends almost to a sublime level where the professionals go beyond laid down responsibilities to make an everlasting impact on young lives. Teachers’ influence has a far-reaching effect as they shape characters and build personalities. The challenges faced by the teaching fraternity are endless and ever-changing owing to the societal needs or demands, students’ potential, and parental influence. However, due recognition for the role of teachers in our society is slow to come. This is perhaps the biggest challenge in this profession. Society needs to re-think its priorities.
Would you inspire your children to take up this profession?
Any professional who is true to his work and has achieved eminence through sheer dint of dedication and integrity has the power to inspire young people to emulate his way of life. As far as encouraging children to make a choice, we must help them identify their strengths and not let them be pressurised to follow someone else’s choice of profession. If they are keen to take up teaching as a career they will always have my support.
Are you still in touch with your teachers?
Most definitely! A lot of my school teachers from Loreto Convent are on social media and we are friends there. It is a lifelong bond.
What are your three inspiring words for your students?
Three inspiring words for my students are: Character, commitment and perseverance.
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