Does your child value her toys?

“My daughter has a cupboard full of toys, but doesn’t value them at all!” laments Vidya Gour the mother of a seven-year-old. Vidya herself grew up with two or three toys, with a new one added every birthday.

Today privileged children grow up with full baskets of and it’s hard to get them to understand how precious or valuable they are for the majority of India’s 480 million children.

“I don’t care if my toy breaks. I’ll get a new one,” says six-year-old Rishabh Verma. He has no clue why his parents don’t like such statements. Like Rishabh, many middle class kids couldn’t care less if they lose or break toys, since they have so many others to replace them.

Here are some ways to help children learn to value things.

Give away stuff:
Draw attention to the vast majority of underprivileged children. Explain how they manage — with few clothes, less food, and often no toys at all. Get your children to make packages of food, clothes and toy which they have out grown. Their choices are likely to be different from yours, but be willing to accommodate them. Identify a suitable family to give the packages to. It could be the family of construction workers living in tents, or your house helper. However it’s important to warn children not to outwardly show pity, disgust or condescension when they in interact with people from other sections of society. Go together and present the packages to them. Learning to practice charity will help your child realise how valuable every toy and dress is for the less privileged and will help them experience the joy of giving.

Examine new things:
A flood of birthday gifts can make some presents less appealing than others. Get your child to examine each new object before using it. If it is a toy/game/stationary she already has, or does not want, she should place it in a box for reuse. Such gifts could be given away to needy children, reused as a gift, or used later. Sifting will discourage your child from taking a new toy, playing with it for a few minutes, and then forgetting all about it.

Old toys can be recycled simply by selling them in a locally or on a second-hand goods website. This way children will become aware that they are doing something sensible by gifting or selling stuff, instead of letting it lie unused at home. They could be allowed to use the money realised to buy what they need.

Create hype: Before gifting your child a new object, generate some interest by talking about it, or showing internet content related to it. Once her curiosity is kindled, she will value it.

Withhold toys: If you find your child handling toys carelessly, throwing them around, or shoving them under the bed, take them away. Keep it with you until you think they will use it well, or give it away. Losing a toy usually makes it a ‘wanted’ object, so keep it for a while, in case your child asks for it again.

Note: The author is Founder-Director of Gyankriti. The views expressed here are personal.

हिंदी अनुवाद:

Tips for Handling the First Days of Preschool

Tip 1: Don’t rush through the morning: No one likes to race through the school morning routine — especially on the first day. So get everyone up at a reasonable hour. That way, you won’t have to hurry your child as he munches through his morning meal — or risk being late because you had to tame your frazzled tot’s tantrum.

Tip 2: Arrive fashionably early: This way, your little one can slowly settle in before the real action starts. He’ll also get more face time with the teacher, too, which will be tougher to do once all the other kids are there to vie for her attention.

Tip 3: Bring a comfort object: Let your child bring along his favorite stuffed animal (or blanket, or whatever object does the trick) so the new setting doesn’t feel so scary. And once your teddy-toting tot feels comfortable with his surroundings, he’ll let go of his lovey — or at least leave it when he plays.

Tip 4: Put on a happy face: Anxiety may be eating you up inside, but don’t let on — nerves are highly contagious. If your tone’s upbeat and you seem confident that your child will have a good time, there’s a better chance that he’ll be upbeat, too.

Tip 5: Hang around, but don’t hover: We sometimes allow parents stay in the classroom for all or part of the first few days, so if you can swing it, stick around. Knowing that you’re within clinging distance will give your kid the courage to explore his new digs. Then, as your child feels more secure, gradually melt into the background. Your goal is to let the teacher take over so you can get on with your day.

Tip 6: Keep good-byes short and sweet: When it’s your cue to make an exit, hold back your tears a little longer (smiling helps unscrunch those furrows in your worried brow), give your new preschooler a hug, and let him know when you’ll be back (“I’ll pick you up after lunch”). Then head out — don’t linger (he can’t get on with his day until you do). And no matter how tempting, never sneak out when your preschooler is looking the other way. It’ll make him feel insecure and less trusting.

Just remember, it’s normal for kids to have a meltdown when it’s time to separate (though many don’t). But even if your child is crying a lot, chances are he’ll be fine five minutes after you walk out the door. If it’s taking a while for your little one to adjust, don’t panic — our teachers (and their assistants) have seen it all and they know just what to do, so ask his teacher for help. Just don’t be surprised if your child’s too happy to say hello to you (or talk about his day) once preschool pick up rolls around!

Note: The author is Founder-Director of Gyankriti. The views expressed here are personal.

Montessori Resources for Parents and Teachers

We at Gyankriti believe that parents, teachers and students are the three pillars in early childhood education. We have always promised to avail best and experienced teachers, however the results depend largely on support of the parents. In our attempt to educate parents towards Early Childhood Care and Education we are sharing some good Montessori resources that I came across in my travels along the internet highway. I hope that this information will be really helpful for parents during summer vacations.

Information about Dr Maria Montessori


The Wonder Years – A Montessori home environment

Parenting for independence blogpost

Practical life in the home – a good list of undertakings that a child will appreciate

Summer vacation – a practical life approach

Summer reading ideas

Montessori at home: the senses

Montessori prepared environment at home

How to create a prepared environment


Montessori for everyone – Montessori home schooling

Moose Huntress – Montessori at home website

Adventures of a rainbow mama


The Montessori Merthod for the Infant Toddler

Baby’s Montessori room

23 month old making his own snack, montessori


Montessori videos on You Tube

Montessori videos on Vimeo

Montessori for infants and toddlers

A general Montessori website

Montessori content on Blogger

Montessori images on Flickr


Montessori on the shelf

Moveable alphabet

Montessorri: Planting the seeds of learning

PS: If you have any other good resources than please share them in comments. Thanks! 🙂

Note: The author is Founder-Director of Gyankriti. The views expressed here are personal.

कल के दीप्तिमान बच्चों के लिए पाठ्यक्रम

जब हमने ज्ञानकृति कि स्थापना की थी तब हम हमारे विद्यर्थियों का ऐसा सर्वांगीण विकास चाहते थे जिसके द्वारा वे मर्मस्पर्शी भी हो और अपने मस्तिष्क का भी प्रयोग कर सके | इसके अलावा वे शैक्षणिक योग्यता के साथ साथ भावनात्मक ,शारीरिक ,सामाजिक एवं सांस्कृतिक विकास भी कर सके |हमने चाहा कि हमारा पाठ्यक्रम हमारे सम्माननीय सलाहकारों एवं प्रिय सहयोगियों के अनुसंधान का सार हो ।इस सबको सुचारु रूप से चलाने में internet का महती योगदान हैं जिसके द्वारा हमारी सभी शाखाओं पर स्थित प्राचार्यो एवं शिक्षिकाओं का काम आसान हो गया हैं ।यह सभी लोग अपने तमाम अनुभवों के साथ इस प्री-प्राइमरी पाठ्यक्रम को आकर्षक एवं उपयुक्त बनाने में जुट गए हैं |

हम चाहते हैं कि हमारा पाठ्यक्रम जिज्ञासु प्रवृत्ति को बढ़ावा देने वाला हो | इसका संपूर्ण प्रारूप निम्नलिखित प्रश्नों पर आधारित हैं जिन्होंने मुझे मेरे प्री-प्राइमरी के आधार कार्य एवं अनुसंधान के दौरान परेशान किया

1.एक १.५ से ६ साल के छोटे से बच्चे से हम क्या क्या सीखने की अपेक्षा करते हैं?

2.उनकी पढ़ाई में हाथ बटाने का सर्वोत्तम तरीका क्या हैं?

3.एक पालक एवं शिक्षक के तौरपर हम कैसे जान पाएंगे कि उन्होंने क्या क्या सीखा ?

कोई भी शैक्षणिक कार्यक्रम अपने वांछित परिणामों से सफल विद्यार्थियो की विशेषता बताने वाला होता हैं । हमारा पाठ्यक्रम भी निम्नलिखित उद्देश्यों पर आधारित हैं

* हमारे विद्यार्थी एक प्रश्नकर्ता हो जो अपनी पढ़ाई लिखाई के प्रति प्रेम का आनंद उठाये । इसके लिए एक शिक्षक कि भूमिका,उसकी जिज्ञासा को पोषित करने वाले की हो |

* हमारे विद्यार्थी दूसरों की भावनाओं और जरूरतों कि क़द्र करें । हमें उनमे सत्यनिष्ठा ,ईमानदारी ,निष्पक्षता एवं इन्साफ के बीज बोने का प्रयत्न करना चाहिए |

* वे शारीरिक शिक्षा के साथ साथ व्यक्तिगत कल्याण का महत्व भी समझे|

*वे आत्मविश्वास से एवं व्यग्र हुए बिना,किसी भी परिस्थिति का सामना कर सके |

*वे गणितीय चिन्हों के साथ साथ एक से अधिक भाषाओँ में अपनी कल्पनाओं को ग्रहण एवं व्यक्त कर सकें |

* वे ज्ञानकृतिमें वैश्विक प्रसंगों एवं उनकी अहमियत को खोजने में अपना समय व्यतीत करें |

यह सब करते हुए एक प्रीस्कूल जाने वाले बच्चे कि हैसियत से वे ज्ञान का अकूत भण्डार प्राप्त करेंगे| इसीलिए इस कार्यक्रम का मूलभूत आधार एक जिज्ञासु वृत्ति कि संरचना करना हैं ।हमारे शिक्षक, क्लासरूम एवं अन्य स्थानो पर उनकी जिज्ञासा को आगे बढ़ाने के लिए प्रतिबद्ध हैं| अलगअलग कक्षाओं में अलगअलग विषय एवं विषय वस्तु का चयन किया गया हैं जैसे अक्षर ,वर्णमाला ,अंक ,प्रकृति ,समाज एवं त्यौहार इत्यादि ।समय पूर्व साक्षरता एवं गणितीय ज्ञान को परंपरागत तरीकों से सिखाया जा सकता हैं ।हमारे विद्यार्थी सामाजिक ,वैचारिक ,स्व प्रबंधन एवं सम्प्रेषण में प्रवीणता हासिल करने के लिए प्रयत्नशील होंगे|

हम हमेशा ही यही कहते हैं की हमारा पाठ्यक्रम एक प्रगतिशील कार्य हैं इसलिए ज्ञानकृति पाठ्यक्रमकी दृष्टी के प्रति आपके सुझावों का हम स्वागत करते हैं |

जल्द ही हमारी कुछ कल्पनाएँ और lesson-plans हम आपसे साझा करेंगे|

नोट: लेखक, योगराज पटेल, ज्ञानकृति के संस्थापक एवं निदेशक है| यहाँ व्यक्त किये गए विचार व्यक्तिगत हैं।

English Translation:

Developing curriculum for tomorrow’s brightest kids

When we started Gyankriti, we wanted to support the overall growth of a developing kid, affecting hearts as well as minds and addressing  emotional, physical, social and cultural needs along with academic welfare. The entire curriculum was supposed to combine the best research and practice of our honourable advisers and dearest colleagues. The internet makes it easy for our teachers and principals located at all the centres in Indore. All of them with a wealth of experience and knowledge from various schools in India and abroad are working together to create a engaging and relevant pre-primary programme.


Our programme aims to offer a comprehensive, ‘curiosity development’ approach to teaching and learning. The entire framework is primarily based on following questions that troubled me during my research and groundwork on pre-primary education:

  1. What do we expect so small, 1.5 years to 6 years old, children to learn?
  2. What is the best way to assist their learning?
  3. How will we as parents and teachers know what they have learned?

Any academic program has a set of desired outcomes to characterize a successful student. Our curriculum is based on following objectives:

  • The student can be an ‘inquirer’ enjoying his/her love of learning, the role of teachers in this case is to nurture student’s curiosity.
  • The students must show sensitivity towards feelings and needs of others. We must also try to sow the seeds of integrity, honesty and a sense of fairness and justice as this stage.
  • They should understand the importance of physical education and personal well-being.
  • They should have confidence to deal with unfamiliar situations without anxiety.
  • They receive and express ideas and information confidently in more than one language including the language of mathematical symbols.
  • They should spend time in Gyankriti exploring themes which have global relevance and importance.

In doing so, they will acquire tremendous amount of knowledge, well at least as a preschooler. At the heart of this programme is structured curiosity building approach. Teachers focus on facilitating inquiry in the classroom and beyond.

The topics or themes of each grade level represent a set of traditional topics like alphabets, numbers, nature, society and festivals. Some specific aspects of pre-literacy and pre-math skills that can be learned through more traditional approaches. Students will also work to develop communication, social, self-management and thinking skills.

We always say that our curriculum is a ‘work in progress’ so we are open to your suggestions on our vision of Gyankriti curriculum. Very soon we will share some of our ideas and sample lesson plans here.

Note: The author is Founder-Director of Gyankriti. The views expressed here are personal.

हिंदी अनुवाद:

Development of Multiple Intelligence at Gyankriti

Gyankriti aims at developing

“The eight multiple intelligence” – as defined by Howard Gardener

Image source:


Deals with written and spoken words. Children with high verbal -linguistic intelligence display a facility with words and languages. They are typically good at reading,writing,telling stories and memorizing words along with dates. They tend to learn best by reading,taking notes,listening ,and by discussing and debating about what they have learned.

Gyankriti linguistics will be skilled to express themselves. They will be able to tell “Nanhi nanhi batein”, those small secrets around which their lives revolve at this age. Their enthusiasm,curiosity,love,inhibitions all will get an expression . They will be more aware.


Deals with nurturing and relating information to one’s natural surroundings. This includes classifying natural forms such as animal and plant species ,and rocks and mountain types:and the applied knowledge of nature in farming,mining etc. Children with a strong naturalistic intelligence also displays organizing ability.

All gyankritians are going to be made sensitive to nature and their surroundings. And why not….It is the nature that keeps us grounded to our roots. It implicates that all the beings are equal. At gyankriti we aim at making them known to the social and environmental grace granted to us.

Intra personal:

Deals with introspective and self reflective capabilities. Children with strong interpersonal intelligence have a deep understanding of the self -their strengths and weakness.

At Gyankriti, converging their vision towards their own self, introspection,making them known to their own negatives will be aimed at. And what else do we need as human beings ,if we learn to do this. This is the first step towards self improvement.


Deals with the ability to interact with others. In theory, Children who have strong interpersonal intelligence tends to be extroverts, they are sensitive to others mood feelings temperaments and motivations and display an ability to co-operate in order to work as part of a group. They communicate effectively and empathize easily with others and maybe either leaders or followers they typically learn best by working with others and often enjoy discussion and debate. 

With the wonderful changes taking place in the Indian society. Children need to be trained to be more humane, to love each other, to keep others before one’s own self. Sochiye , If at Gyankriti we are able to create such enhanced values in our children ,then how beautiful they will make our society.

Bodily -Kinesthetic:

Children who have a bodily – kinesthetic intelligence seem to learn better by involving  muscular movement ( hands on , actual lab experiments ), and generally good at physical activities such as sports or dance. They may enjoy acting or performing and in general they are good at building and making things. They often learn best by doing something physically other then by reading or hearing about it.

In today,s world children should be told about how to keep their body fit at a very early age. The change in today’s lifestyle demands it. We also know “HEALTH IS WEALTH”. So, to gain this wealth this intelligence needs to be triggered and fanned. Let’s do it.


Deals with special judgement and the ability to visualize the minds eye.

Careers which suit those with this type of intelligence include artist, designers and architects. A spatial person is also good with puzzles. The four parts of spatial awareness are distance,form(shape),direction,position(in relationships to others) Spatial awareness is the knowledge of where you are in relationship to other people and objects in your environment. To develop spatial awareness children learn concepts ,such as


Deals with sensitivity to sounds rhythms, tones and music. Language skills are typically highly developed in those whose base intelligence is musical in addition, they will sometimes use songs or rhythms to learn. They have sensitivity to rhythm, pitch, meter, tone, melody or timber.

WORLD has music all round. All natural sounds have a certain rhythm to themselves, We only need musical ears to appreciate it.

At Gyankriti we aim to make all the ears musical., to be able to hear the music of silence, sound of the ripples generated, music in the chirping of the birds,

Logical – Mathematical:

Deals with logic, abstractions, reasoning and numbers. A person with this intelligence may display, apart from traditional mathematical abilities, reasoning capabilities, recognizing abstract patterns, scientific thinking & investigation, to ability to perform complex calculations.

AHHH…. the world is so logical these days ,and what will one do if our children are unable to keep this pace. Great scientists like Einstein are great not only for their inventions ,but also for their unique brain developments. They could appreciate a piano piece as well as a formula. KAASH… we have places where this kind of environment could be generated for the development of both the hemispheres of the brain. At Gyankriti , our logo represents us. LOGIC and CREATIVITY is what we stand for.

Note: The author is Head Mistress at Tulsi Nagar, Indore Branch. She has several years of experience in education at reputed schools in India and abroad.

The views expressed here are personal.

बचपन की देखभाल और शिक्षा – कोई बच्चों का खेल नहीं

“बचपन की देखभाल और शिक्षा के क्षेत्र में निवेश किया गया हर एक डॉलर बेहतर शिक्षा, स्वास्थ्य, सामाजिक और आर्थिक परिणाम पैदा करता है|” – प्रो जेम्स हेकमैन (अर्थशास्त्र में नोबेल पुरस्कार विजेता)

बचपन के पहले छ: वर्ष सबसे अधिक महत्वपूर्ण होते है, क्योंकि इसी समय में मानसिक विकास सबसे तीव्र गति से होता है| इस समय के विकास में ना सिर्क स्वास्थय, पोषण और देखभाल की गुणवत्ता जरुरी है बल्कि साथ में दिए जाने वाले वातावरण का भी महत्त्व होता है| इस उम्र के अनुभवों का असर आने वाले कई वर्षो तक दिखाई देता है| जीवन के पहले तीन वर्षों को भाषा और शब्दावली के विकास में सबसे महत्वपूर्ण होते है| उच्च गुणवत्ता वाले ECCE (early childhood care and education) प्रोग्राम जिनमे बच्चों को भाषा सम्बंधित गतिविधियाँ करवाई जाती है, माध्यमिक और उच्च शिक्षा में भी मदद करते हैं|

प्रारंभिक शिक्षा के कई लाभ होने के बावजूद आज भी हमारे देश में ऐसे शिक्षा संस्थानों की कमी है| भारतवर्ष में आज भी सिर्क १.१% शिशु प्रीस्कूल में दाखिला लेते है जबकि फ्रांस और स्कॉटलैंड जैसे देशों में यह संख्या १००% तक है| यही नहीं हमारे देश में प्रीस्कूल शिक्षण को लेकर अभी भी कोई तयशुदा मापदंड नहीं है| इन सभी बातों का असर प्रीस्कूल में दी जाने वाली सुविधों पर साफ़-साफ़ दिखाई देता है|

सन १९९६ में सर्वप्रथम NCERT ने निर्देशिका जारी की थी जिसमें ECCE के क्षेत्र में काम करने रहे संस्थओं के लिए न्यूनतम तय दिशा-निर्देश थे| उनमे से कुछ निर्देश इस प्रकार थे:

व्यापक पहलु विशिष्ट दिशानिर्देश
बुनियादी ढांचे एवं सुविधाएँ विद्यालय की भौगोलिक स्तिथि, खेलने के लिए स्थान, स्वचा शुद्ध पेयजल की उपलब्धता, प्रसाधन, सोने के लिए स्थान एवं भंडार गृह|
उपकरण और सामग्री बड़ी मांसपेशियों के विकास के लिए बाहरी उपकरण/ सामग्री, आंतरिक उपकरण/ सामग्री, प्राथमिक चिकित्सा किट
सुरक्षा एवं बचावन खेल-कूद वाले क्षेत्र की सुरक्षा, स्वतः बंद होने वाले दरवाज़े ना लगाना, बच्चों को नुकसानदेह  किसी भी वास्तु के लिए पृथक भंडारण व्यवस्था; जो उनके पहुच से दूर न हो, बच्चों से सम्बंधित सभी वस्तुओं का समय समय पर रखरखाव एवं नुकीली वस्तुओं के उपयोग पर रोक|
कर्मचारी कर्मचारियों की उपलब्धता, शिक्षक-छात्र अनुपात, कर्मचारियों की शैक्षणिक योग्यता एवं तनख्वाह|
प्रवेश की उम्र प्रीस्कूल के लिए उपयुक्त कक्षानुसार उम्र को दर्शाता है
परवेश प्रक्रिया पुरानी प्रवेश प्रक्रियाओं के बजाय किसी दूसरी प्रक्रिया को अपनाना
प्रोग्राम समय, पाठ्यक्रम एवं पढ़ने का तरीका|
प्रलेखन प्रवेश रिकॉर्ड, प्रगति रिपोर्ट, टीचर्स डायरी, स्टाफ एवं छात्रों का उपस्थिति पत्रक, आय-व्यय, वस्तुओं का लेखाजोखा एवं कर्मचारियों से सम्बंधित जानकारी|

वर्तमान में ECCE  केन्द्रों के पाठ्यक्रम में कोई समानता नहीं है| प्रीस्कूल अपने केंद्र पर उपलब्ध सामान के आधार पर पाठ्यक्रम तय करते हैं| हालाँकि भारत सरकार द्वारा सुझाये गए “राष्ट्रीय पाठ्यक्रम की रुपरेखा” में प्रीस्कूल पाठ्यक्रमों के बारे में कहता है-

“इस उम्र में बच्चों में बड़ी तेजी से शारीरिक एवं मानसिक विकास होता हैं| इसी उम्र में बच्चें आत्म-निर्भर एवं उत्सुक नज़र आते है| जैसे जैसे उनका उनका शारीरिक विकास होता है वे सामाजिक एवं सांस्कृतिक रूप से विकसित और परिपक्व होते जाते है| वे बहुत जल्दी अपने वातावरण में घुल-मिल जाते है और धीरे-धीरे अपनी कल्पनाशीलता के द्वारा भूतकाल एवं वर्तमान में आये अनुभवों को संजोने का प्रयास करते है| खेल-खेल में बच्चों का सर्वंगीण विकास होता है जिसके लिए एकदम सरल एवं बार-बार दोहराई जाने वाले हाव-भाव, जिसमे किसी वास्तु का समावेश भी सम्मिलित हो सकता है| इस उम्र में ही भाषा का विकास होता है, संकेतों की भाषा समझ में आने लगती है| इसी उम्र में अहंकार भी जागृत होता है जिसके द्वारा दो लोगो के विचारों की असमानता भी बच्चों को समझ में आती है| इसी समय में बच्चें कल्पनालोक में भी विचरण करते है| शारीरिक क्षमता, वैचारिक परिपक्वता एवं उचित सामाजिक विन्यास के लिए आवश्यक विस्वास, आदतें एवं रवैया तैयार होने के लिए प्रीस्कूल का समय सबसे प्रभावशाली एवं उचित होता है| सभी प्रीस्कूल चलने वालों कू इस बात की गंभीरता को ध्यान में रखते हुए अपने पाठ्यक्रम की रचना करना चाहिए ताकि इन कक्षाओं में पढने के इच्छुक बच्चों का समग्र विकास सुनिश्चित किया जा सके|”

भारत सरकार ने लम्बे और उपेक्षापूर्ण रवैये के बाद अंतत: प्रीस्कूल नीतियों की तरफ ध्यान दिया है| ECCE नीति का लक्ष्य गली-मोहल्लों में तेजी से खुल रहे झूलाघर, प्रीस्कूलों जिनका कोई शैक्षणिक स्तर नहीं है उनका सुधार करना है| केन्द्रीय मंत्रिमंडल द्वारा तैयार नीति के प्रमुख बिंदु निम्नलिखित है:

१) सभी बच्चों को सम्मिलित करने हेतु अनुकूलन कार्यनीति

२) पाठ्यक्रम की गुणवत्ता एवं स्तर

३) समुचित विकास सुनिश्चित करने के लिए समाज एवं परिवार को समाविष्ट करना

४) व्यवसायिकता को बढ़ावा देना

५) बच्चों के व्यवस्थित विकास एवं सुरक्षा को बढ़ावा देना

हम उम्मीद करते है की जल्द ही एक राष्ट्रीय परिषद् का गठन होगा को प्रीस्कूल और झूलाघरों में शैक्षणिक मानकीकरण, प्रशिक्षित शिक्षक, स्वछता एवं स्वास्थ्या पर दिशानिर्देश निर्धारित करेगा| कुछ प्रस्तावित दिशानिर्देश निम्नानुसार है-

१) ३-४ घंटे पढाई

२) ३० बच्चों की कक्षा के लिए कम से कम ३५ वर्ग मीटर का कमरा

३) न्युन्यतम ३० वर्ग मीटर का खुला बाहरी इलाका|

४) सुरक्षित भवन

५) सुगम, स्वच्छ एवं हरा-भरा क्षेत्र

६) स्वच्छ शुद्ध पेयजल

७) प्राथमिक उपचार सुविधा

८) शिक्षण सहायक सामग्री

९) भोजन एवं सोने के समय का नियंत्रण

१०) ३ से ६ वर्ष के बच्चों के लिए बालक-शिक्षक अनुपात २०:१ तथा ३ वर्ष से कम आयु वर्ग से लिए १०:१ हो|

‘ज्ञानकृति’ ने “प्रीस्कूल चले हम” अभियान आरम्भ किया है जिसके द्वारा उच्चस्तरीय प्रारंभिक शिक्षा के प्रति जागरूकता लाने का प्रयास किया जा रहा है| विभिन्न अभियानों के माध्यम से हम अपने अभियान को बढ़ावा दे रहे है|

नोट: लेखक, योगराज पटेल, ज्ञानकृति के संस्थापक एवं निदेशक है| यहाँ व्यक्त किये गए विचार व्यक्तिगत हैं।

English Translation:

Early Childhood Care and Education: No child’s play

“Every dollar invested in quality early childhood care and education produces a 7-10% return in better education, health, social and economic outcomes.”

– Prof. James Heckman (Nobel Laureate in Economics)

The first six years of life are critical years since the rate of development in these years is more rapid than at any other stage of development. In the early years development is influenced not only by health, nutrition and quality of care but also by the quality of stimulation and early learning experiences provided to the child. These initial experiences of a child’s life set the pattern for years to come. The first three years of life are a crucial time for acquiring language and building vocabulary. High-quality Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) programs that expose infants and toddlers to language-rich activities have been linked to higher academic achievement in later years.

Despite the benefits of early education, our country has lagged in making sure high-quality programs are available for tiny-tots. In India only 1.1% kids are enrolled in Preschools, whereas the enrolment rate is almost 100% in countries like France and Scotland. Moreover, the present scenario in India in the delivery of ECCE is marked by diversity of programmatic approach, content and standards. There are no standard practices followed. All of this has a direct bearing on the quality of services being provided.

Though quality matters in the delivery of ECCE services, there are no norms, guidelines or framework binding on implementers. Minimum Specifications for Preschools, is a suggestive guide published by NCERT in 1996. This document serves as a guideline for policy makers and implementers for laying down basic norms and specifications for Early Childhood Education(ECE). In its attempt at setting some standards and norms, the document covers the following aspects:

Broad Aspects Covered Specific Aspect for which Guidelines Provided
Physical structure and facilities Location; play areas; facility for drinking water; sanitary facilities; sleeping facilities; storage space
Equipment and material Outdoor equipment/material for large muscle development; Indoor equipment/material; First aid kit
Safety precautions Safety of play space; not to use self locking doors; materials that could harm children should be stored in areas inaccessible to children; no toxic colour/paint should be used for play equipment; regular maintenance of outdoor equipment; avoid sharp edges in equipment, etc.
Pre school staff Staff structure and adult child ratio; qualifications of the teacher; qualifications of the helper; salary structure
Age for admission Explains the age specific development of the child vis-à-vis appropriate age for pre-school
Admission procedure Alternative strategies suggested as a departure from the practised admission procedure
The pre-school programme Timings; Content and methodology
Record and registers Admission records; progress records; teachers’ diary; registers – attendance of staff and children, accounts, stock and staff profile

At present there is no uniformity in the curriculum followed in the ECCE Centres. Service providers have developed their curriculum on the basis of the material available. The understanding among programme implementers is not always in line with the desired. However, the National Curriculum Framework includes a section on the curricular content of pre –school education. It states the following:

“During the pre-primary stage, enormous changes take place in the children’s physical growth and mental development. From a state of dependence and helplessness the children gradually attain independence and become curious learners. As their bodies grow and respond to the social and cultural cues, their nervous systems mature and their cognitive experiences are enhanced. They quickly adapt to the world and slowly begin to imagine and discover methods for storing away the memories of the past and present events. Play fosters the overall development of the learners who may engage in functional play, i.e., simple and repetitive movements with or without an object, and constructive activity – physically manipulating objects in order to construct or create something. This period is marked by the development of language, the use of symbols and egocentric thinking, i.e., failure to distinguish between one’s own point of view and that of another individual. Children at this stage also engage in fantasy play. For the development of beliefs, habits and attitude associated with physical well-being, emotional maturity and proper social orientation, the years of pre-primary and primary education are the most impressionable and formative period of the child’s life. This fact has to be realized in all seriousness by the curriculum designers and practitioners so as to provide appropriate and adequate learning experiences to the learners.”

After a long and painful period of neglect, Government of India promises to devote attention to the issue of preparing all children for primary schooling. The National Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) policy recently approved by the Union Cabinet aims to end the current situation that has led to the mushrooming of crèches, play schools, nursery schools and so on that adhere to no particular standard.

Objectives of the draft policy:

  1. Ensuring adaptive strategies for inclusion of all children
  2. Set out the quality,standards and curriculum framework
  3. To promote strong partnerships with communities and families in order to improve the quality of development.
  4. To promote professionalism in the field
  5. To promote, reinforce and safeguard quality services for all young children for systematic development.

We expect that very soon we will have a national council to establish guidelines for standardisation of teaching and learning aids, trained manpower, sanitation and hygiene norms in play schools and day care centres. Some of the proposed guidelines are as follows:

  1. 3-4 hours. of learning
  2. At least 35 square meters classroom for a group of 30 children
  3. At least 30 square meters of outdoor space
  4. Structurally safe building
  5. Easy approach, cleanliness and green areas
  6. Clean Water arrangements
  7. First aid/medical kit availability
  8. Learning material and teaching aids
  9. Quality check on meals and nap time
  10. Teachers student ratio is 1:20 for three to six years and 1:10 under the age of three years.

Gyankriti has initiated “preschool chale hum” campaign to create awareness for high-quality early education. We will promote it through various events in Indore.

Note: The author is Founder-Director of Gyankriti. The views expressed here are personal.

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