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Hrushikesh Senapaty to take charge as new NCERT director

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ncertBy NewsGram Staff-Writer

New Delhi: Human Resource and Development ministry (HRD) on Monday appointed Hrushikesh Senapaty as the new director for the National Council of Education, Research and Training (NCERT). He has replaced Pravin Sinclair, who was abruptly removed from the post last year.

Earlier on August 24, the search-cum selection committee of NCERT had finalised the names of Senapaty and Anil Shukla for the coveted job. Later, Senapaty was declared fit for the job over Shukla because of his vast experience in the NCERT system. Skukla is a professor in Lucknow University’s education department, while Senapaty is currently the Principal at NCERT’s Regional Institute of Education, Bhopal.

The selection committee includes vice-chancellor of Banaras Hindu University, GC Tripathi, NIT Jaipur’s director, I K Bhat, former Principal of DPS RK Puram, Shyama Chona and MK Sridhar, Professor at Canara Bank School of Mangement Studies (CBSMS).

On Senapaty’s appointment, a ministry official said, “He has never served in Delhi and is expected to bring a fresh perspective to the NCERT that is known for groupism and political affiliations of faculty members.”

The source further explained, “The first priority for Senapaty as the new director would be to revise the NCERT text books and frame a new curriculum which has not been updated from 2005. He then has to dedicate his resources in speeding up the proposed New Education Policy.”

Having ample amount of experience working at NCERT, Senapaty is a UNESCO fellow working dedicatedly on information and communication technology in education (ICTE). He is an alumnus of Ravenshaw College, Cuttack and BJP College, Bhubaneshwar. Senapaty is also a doctorate scholar from Devi Ahilya University, Indore.

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National Book Trust (NBT) Chairman: Nurturing Creativity and Innovation in Children at an Early Age are Much Needed

How should current school curriculum be modified for an overall development of Children?

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Nurturing creativity and innovation in children
Nurturing creativity and innovation in children. Pixabay
  • Education should work in the direction of expanding the horizon of knowledge children
  • There is a need to shift educational learning for school goers from content mastery to competency mastery
  • To compete with the children worldwide, they need to have an understanding that is beyond books

New Delhi, August 21, 2017: There is a need to look beyond the world of text books and inculcate in children qualities like empathy towards society, humanity, sensitivity towards other human beings and nature.

Baldeo Bhai Sharma, Chairman of National Book Trust (NBT), talked about nurturing creativity, innovation in young minds for nation’s economic and spiritual development.

He was speaking at the FICCI’s first-ever Children’s Publishing Conclave called ‘Scrapbook’. Mr. Sharma said that it is crucial to observe and spot the creativity in children. To not just bound them to the school curriculum. The Supplementary books in school should teach them about the life lessons, that they should be good human beings. Such books will help them in the developing a good and positive personality; it will also strengthen their thinking and imaginative skills.

ALSO READ: 11 Facts about Education System Around the World: Do they prove to be Beneficial for Children?

In the conclave, he talked about how brave soldiers can inspire kids to be like that when they grow up and fight for their country someday. If not, even then such books will inculcate a feeling of patriotism in them. According to ANI reports, Mr. Sharma (pointing towards NBT’s efforts) said, “‘The Veergatha’ series had been introduced by NBT, which talks of the great acts of bravery by Indian soldiers.” The first series has a set of 5 books in English and Hindi, they are written so as to inspire the young minds and evoke feelings of patriotism in children from an early age.

Children are sometimes overburdened with books.  UNESCO encourages learning in mother tongue, especially at the early stage.  Sharma said that education should work in the direction of expanding the horizon of knowledge in a child and he agrees with UNESCO that teaching a child in mother tongue should be encouraged to retain cultural values.

Dr. Hrushikesh Senapaty, Director of NCERT, said: “There is a need to shift educational learning for school goers from content mastery to competency mastery, where competencies should be classified into character, intellectual and social.” He stressed upon the need to make the classroom environment vibrant where teachers would play the role of a facilitator- will provide them with an opportunity where they can develop and strengthen their competencies as well as communication ability. He added, “The Indian education system is moving from knowledge construction to knowledge processing with the help of technology, enabling children to explore, innovate and create.”

ALSO READ: Ragas for Preschool Children: Combining Classical Music with Fun Exercises

Appreciating FICCI’s initiative, Dr. Senapaty said that the goal of this publishing conclave is to produce content which is rich in quality and is innovative. It will enable them to learn in a collaborative environment. He added, “Indian children have performed well when they follow a prescribed school curriculum but to compete with the children worldwide, they need to have an understanding that is beyond books and focus on skills like building their applied knowledge.”

Children should explore, innovate and create
Children should explore, innovate and create. Pixabay

Ms. Urvashi Butalia, Chairperson, FICCI Publishing Committee and Director, Zubaan, said that the conclave focused on:

  • promoting book reading amongst young minds
  • government and children’s publishers- enhance learning outcome in educational space
  • policy advocacy- nurture collaboration between schools
  • addressed- gender misrepresentation in children’s books
  • concerns- children’s content in school books
  • implementing theory of multiple intelligence on children’s content- enhance learning outcome
  • changing role of technology in children’s content and its impact on K-12 (kindergarten (K) and the 1st -12th grade) education

Dr. A. Didar Singh, Secretary-General, FICCI, said that this platform will help to explore possible collaboration between children, content creators, offline and online service providers, publishers, technology disruptors, schools, teachers, parents, and policymakers. The conclave focused on the important aspects like learning requirements of an individual child, crucial role publishers can play to address it.

The conclave also had some interesting workshops for school children. The workshops had activities like creative writing, story-telling and received appreciation from the young minds.


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Change in NCERT curriculum on cards

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By Preksha Buttan

In a recent development, it has been declared that lessons of Ramayana, Mahabharata and Gita will be taught at school and college levels. NDA government is planning to bring the country out of “cultural pollution” and wants to induce “values” in young minds. Mahesh Sharma, State Minister for Culture, said the government will not be deterred by criticism and it was only trying to promote RSS ideology. So, the critical question is: Are Hindu epics promoters of RSS ideologies? Perhaps, not!

Photo credit: shashwatdc.com
Photo credit: shashwatdc.com

In a bid to substantiate the aforementioned argument, teaching Ramayana, Mahabharata and Gita will help in bringing students from other religious backgrounds together and they will also come to know what Hinduism is all about. But it can also harm the feelings of other religious groups, as they will feel their religious books are being ignored by only giving importance to the Hindu epical stories at teaching level.

On the other hand, deletions are made in NCERT’s “social and political life” textbooks. Yogendra Yadav, suggested that the current deletions are lacking sense. He posted on a social media site, “Panchayati Raj is deleted on the ground that it is not relevant to Delhi, but rural administration is retained with all its details”.

There are so many people in Delhi who belong to different states where Panchayat used to happen. Yadav added, “No attention is being paid to the essential elements that a future citizen of the country must study. Students who may not opt Political Science in class XII will pass school without studying anything about the Indian Constitution, the working of our Parliament, the institution of President, and other relevant things.” as mentioned in Indian Express.

Photo Credit: realitycrowdtv.com
Photo Credit: realitycrowdtv.com

Removing basics of politics from the textbooks will not result in any good and students will not know how everything in politics work. Also, adding epical texts to inculcate values in students, teaching them about the world which is gone and preventing them to study about the present world does not make any sense. Students may later on (after their schooling) feel out of the world as they will not know how everything in politics functions.

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App allowing free download of all NCERT books to be launched soon

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Smriti-Irani-621x414New Delhi: Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani announced on Monday that soon a mobile application would be launched to enable the students download all the NCERT textbooks for free.

“On July 17, under the banner of NCERT, we will unveil a mobile app which will enable students to download all NCERT books from Class one to 12 for free,” she said.

Speaking at the inauguration of the Rashtriya Yoga Shikshak Sammelan at the Talkatora Indoor Stadium, Irani also launched the syllabus and course material for Class 6 to 10 students, prepared by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) and training module for teacher education programme prepared by the National Council of Teacher Education (NCTE).

The two-day conference on ‘Yoga – Principles and Practice in our education system’ will discuss topics like yoga for holistic development, yoga for the needs of special children, yoga and stress management, yoga in curriculum and best practices in yoga teaching.

(IANS)