23 October 2019
Bhubaneswar: Active Learning emerged as a popular tool of learning during the Gurukul System of education, which promoted learning with doing, and continued and gaining importance till date, stated eminent educationist Dr Bijaya Kumar Sahoo from Odisha in a recent article published on Connected TOT (Teachers of Tomorrow), a community building initiative from Cambridge University Press India- South Asia.
"The aims and ideals of ancient Indian education were to promote simultaneous and harmonious development of the mind, body, intellect and spirit. When we go back to the ancient Indian education system, it is evident that the latest practise of Active Learning was the core of the education process," stated Dr Sahoo.
While stating that the goal of active learning emphasizes upon improving the attitude of the children before they begin their professional lives, he listed out some elements of Active Learning.
Explaining why Active Learning is important at Meta-cognitive stage of understanding, Dr Sahoo stated that the maximum development of children’s brains occurs during the tender ages of 6 to 8. It is the metacognitive stage of understanding when children are introduced to something new. Bringing in Active Learning techniques are the most important at this age.
On imparting 21st century skills through Active Learning Dr Sahoo states that Active Learning is sure to ameliorate the traditional method of teaching. It leads to instilling and indoctrinating the 21st century learning skills of creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving, adaptability, communication and interpersonal skills through its various application-based activities in the classroom.
"Mapping students’ abilities and talents with the curriculum and enhancing the learning environment helps in bringing a new perspective in learning. Utilizing this aspect also creates a learning environment that allows individual students to thrive and flourish in all directions of learning possibilities," he added.
In his article Dr Sahoo also listed some methods of bringing Active Learning in the classroom. However, he also believes that learning does not just take place in the confined four walls of the classroom. It’s infinite and beyond boundaries that promotes innovation, creativity, and critical thinking in the students, leading to their holistic development.
Dr Sahoo, a Chartered Accountant-turned-edupreneur in Odisha, is the founder of SAI International School and Advisor of Odisha Adarsha Vidyalaya Sangathan (OAVS). One can visit https://connectedtot.com/2019/10/22/active-learning-a-gateway-to-better-understanding/ to read his full article of Active Learning.