“Education is for life, not for living” So goes the saying. Educating students in the 21st century is definitely an ardous task but not a mission impossible. Schools and institutions of higher learning must work towards a holistic development of a child. Holisitic development here means the overall personality development. A development that includes moral, spiritual, physical, emotional and mental development.
This holistic development can be imparted to children first at home and then at school. Home is the first school and everything spoken in the hearsay of the child tends to form its character. Hence the home environ should be congenial and the family members especially the parents play a very crucial role in forming of the child’s character. As parents, a great responsibility on their shoulders as the child grows up observing, imitating and learning every action and emotion of the elders around. Hence, parenthood comes with a lot of sacrifice. It’s a “sadhana” a process that is lifelong as every stage is a challenge and definitely needs a lot of grit, determination and patience. The traditional “carrot & sticks approach” will never work most importantly in the current scenario. The role of parents therefore becomes a challenging but yet an achievable goal.
Once the child sets its foot into the outside world, he faces lots of peer pressure and other types of distractions that can easily detour him from the right path. Here the school and the teachers play an important part in the development of the child. School becomes a second home and the teacher is the child’s second mother. In fact children spend most part of their time in school rather than home. Here the child learns to share and care. The day to day interactions with its peers and teachers leads to more of an experiential learning along with the regular academics. These experiences that they have tend to enhance and shape their character. 20 years from now its not the academic excellence alone that matters but these small incidents help in shaping the child’s over all character. Hence the responsibility of educating and preparing children to face the innumerable challenges of 21st century lies entirely on parents as well as teachers. “Teachers as parents in school and parents as teachers at home” a very great shared responsibility will help in the holistic development of the child in the long run. A fact that we as parents and educators should always remember that “Today’s children are tomorrow’s torch bearers”.
As a teacher I believe that a paradigm shift in our thinking from education and educating to educare (sharing + caring) is the need of the hour. This will help the children to grow into morally, mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally responsible citizens and netizens of tomorrow.