All play and no learning? Tamil Nadu schools are planning to attract returning students with fun activities

The idea is to re-introduce the classroom feel into the students after a gap of one and a half years. This is what TN teachers have lined up
Image for representational purpose only | Pic: EdexLive
Image for representational purpose only | Pic: EdexLive

The Tamil Nadu Department of Education has asked teachers to set aside the syllabus and instead conduct fun activities for the school reopening week on November 1. Teachers in schools across the state will host sessions on storytelling, games, art, handwriting, song and dance to attract students to school after a gap of over a year and a half.

Bala Dandayuthapani, Chief Educational Officer (CEO) of Thoothukudi district says, “The activity-based events have been planned for seven days. The idea is to attract children and make them want to return to school. After a 1.5 year break, it is natural that many students do not want to return to physical classes. So making it fun and light might make them want to come back to school.” 

The second important goal is to re-introduce students to the classroom atmosphere. Geetha, CEO of Coimbatore district says, "We will only accommodate 20 students in a class. We have been given standard operating procedures (SOPs) to strictly follow — this includes COVID-19 safe protocols such as placing hand sanitisers, hand washes and soaps, separating desks, stocking up on masks and maintaining social distancing."

There will be challenges galore as Geetha identifies. "Getting students to sit in one place could be a small task but tricky. Following classroom etiquette such as sitting on chairs during classes, taking notes, putting trash in the dustbin, facing the teacher and the blackboard etc might be difficult as they are used to looking at their phones and screens,” she explains.

The first 45 days after reopening will delve into a refresher course to get the students to transition into the new grade seamlessly and get them up to speed with the new lessons.

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