In the aftermath of the pandemic, educators of the world have had to undertake an impossible task: to replicate the functions of school for what seems to be an indefinite period, without a personal touch and without bricks and mortar. And that means millions of teachers are resorting to technologies new and old to reach and teach every student. The nation’s schools have never had to improvise like this.
But today, the need of the hour is to quickly evolve and adapt to newer, more effective ways of teaching that suit the current situation. It is true that teaching remotely can be just as exhausting as teaching in-person but unlearning the traditional ways and grasping modern methodology is a transformation that calls for great effort.
In many ways, teachers are working with one foot in the future and the other in the past. Today’s graduates will serve the most digitally savvy, socially networked generation in history. The youth of today have a clear vision of what a 21st century education should provide, and already participate in online communities with a wealth of learning resources that go way beyond the bounds of their schools and the limits of our comprehension. They will pursue careers in a globally integrated knowledge economy that rewards teamwork, continuous learning, and constant innovation. Hence, this calls for a contemporary approach and technique to be applied to the entire learning system.
So how are educators redefining the educational framework today?
1. They endeavour to facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity so that all students achieve in the global society. Teachers are engaging today’s digital-age learners to meet the goals of closing the achievement gap, so that all students graduate from high school ready to succeed in college and careers.
2. They enable students to maximize the potential of their formal and informal learning experiences. Teachers are learning to work within a technology-empowered ecology and are trying to help students orchestrate the resources of this new learning environment to meet their individual learning needs.
3. New age teachers facilitate learning in multiple modalities. In an open learning ecology, teachers are learning to embrace a greater diversity of spaces, times, resources, media, and other methods. Modern day learning environments are synchronous and asynchronous, face-to-face and virtual, local and global. The rapid growth of virtual high schools and courses, underscores the need for teachers with the skills to teach both in classrooms and online environments.
4. Teachers have not only embraced technology like never before, but they have also reached out to the emotionally distraught children, making time to counsel them, help them adapt to a technology-driven learning and move forward.They have played the roles of mentors, facilitators and counsellors, having counselled parents who are juggling with multiple responsibilities in the midst of the pandemic.
5. Teachers are collaborating with subject matter experts in the community in a blend of face-to-face and online learning that turns schools into hubs in a networked learning ecology.
6. Teachers are now making use of the full range of digital-age learning tools to improve student engagement and achievement. Teachers are reliant on digital technology to customize learning activities for individual student needs. They are also willing to contribute to the continued evolution of these tools and develop their knowledge of how to use them to improve learning.
In essence, teachers have well understood that transformational changes are needed in teacher education to move the public education system into a contemporary sphere. Nations around the world are racing to take their educational systems into the future also encouraging our educators to build pathways to the future of digital-age teaching and learning and taking the first step towards launching this transformation.
Educationist and Principal of Jasudben ML School and Bloomingdales Pre-Primary
Professional Journey Snapshot
- Jan 1991 – Mar 1991 Kendriya Vidyala, Baroda
- 1994 – 1997 JML School, Mumbai
- 1998 – 2020 Cathedral & John Connon Middle School, Mumbai
- Present – Jasudben ML School, Mumbai
Damyanti Bhattacharya is a veteran educator with an experience of over 30 years in the field of education. A qualified Master of English, Damyanti Bhattacharya also holds a B. Ed degree, is an AP certified teacher as well as an IGCSE certified teacher. She began her career as an English professor for grades 11 and 12 in Kendriya Vidyalaya, Baroda. After that she came to Mumbai to further pursue her goal of imparting holistic education. Ever since then, she has been striving to bring out the importance of character building and overall personality development of the students.
In Mumbai, her first stint was with JML School which lasted 3 years following which she joined Cathedral & John Connon Middle School, and was a part of the reputed institution for 22 years during which she essayed roles of English HOD and then Headmistress. She was also the first in India to introduce an innovation hub to promote practical learning experiences.
Damyanti Bhattacharya keeps herself abreast of the ‘National Education Policy’ and the ever-evolving sphere of education via workshops and leadership courses. Her vision is to ignite and nurture the spirit of inquiry in young leaders and she passionately follows the motto that knowledge is adorned by character. Through the course of her professional journey as a resilient educator, her mission has been to:
Build an ecosystem which promotes thinking and learning by providing excellent curricular and co-curricular programs.
- Continuously upgrade teaching skills through ongoing training programs for teachers
- Inculcate amongst its students, a relevant value system.
- Be in all things contemporary
Damyanti Bhattacharya has been bestowed with the Iconic Leadership Award by the Governor for imparting the most advanced knowledge and education to the children without departing from the core Indian values. She believes that JML School and Bloomingdales Pre-Primary has offered her a remarkable learning curve, making it an enriching experience that is certain to help her mentor children and shape lives in a better manner.
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