Connect with us

Knowledge

IITians Volunteer to Make Skin-Friendly Sanitizers to Fight Corona

In a unique initiative, IITs step in to help the nation with the shortage of Hand sanitizers. IIT Guwahati and IIT Roorkee are making and distributing high quality, skin-friendly sanitizer.

Published

on

COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to work on our personal hygiene more than ever before. To combat the scarcity of hand sanitizers across India, two of our premier IITs centres (Roorkee and Guwahati) have taken a stand to contribute to the supply.

IIT Guwahati was at the forefront fighting the pandemic since the initial days of the outbreak by producing at least 5000 bottles of hand sanitizers and other protective gears for the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital and the Assam government. This initiative truly helped the local government keep the supply of hand sanitizer active throughout the state. 

Another similar story is coming from IIT Roorkee where two students have taken up the responsibility to prepare more than 150 litres of herbal hand sanitizer. The task of distributing the sanitizer has been taken up by Heal-agnostics Innovations Pvt. Ltd, a startup based out of IIT Roorkee with the support of Dr. Indranil Lahiri, Dr. Debrupa Lahiri, and the administration.

The duo Siddharth Sharma, a research scholar of Nanotechnology, and Vaibhav Jain, a research scholar at the Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, have formulated the sanitizer with 80% isopropanol/ethanol.

This special sanitizer contains anti-fungal, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory herbal ingredients adding to its protective and moisturizing features. Standards prescribed by the WHO are strictly followed during its production.

"In view of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic, it is imperative to maintain basic hygiene practices since there is no specific treatment or vaccine for the disease. This IIT Roorkee-incubated product will be useful to the entire community by promoting basic hygiene," said Mr. Sharma.

Advertisement

We appreciate these initiatives by IIT-Roorkee and IIT-Guwahati as our country strives hard to keep the rapid spread of the virus at bay.

Knowledge

11 Free Mental Health Courses for Teachers

These free online courses on mental health will help teachers continue their development and improve the lives of their students

Published

on

This article is a compilation of free mental health courses that seek to inspire teachers on handling mental health issues and provide mental health education and become better counsellors. 

What is mental health?

Mental health refers to people’s cognitive, behavioral, and emotional well-being. It can be defined as a state of well-being in which an individual recognizes his or her abilities, can cope with everyday stresses, work productively, and contribute to their community.

“You don’t have to be positive all the time. It’s perfectly okay to feel sad, angry, annoyed, frustrated, scared, and anxious. Having feelings doesn’t make you a negative person. It makes you human.”

Lori Deschene

This article covers free online mental health courses. Some of these are available with free certification whereas a few allow you to learn for free, and charge a fee for the certificate.

Be There Certificate

The Be There Certificate is a free, self-paced learning experience designed to increase mental health literacy and provide the learner with the knowledge, skills, and confidence needed to safely support anyone who may be struggling with their mental health.

The Be There Certificate is offered by Jack.org, a Canadian youth mental health charity, in partnership with the Born This Way Foundation.

Advertisement

You can download a PDF of your certificate after completing all six modules of the free Be There Certificate online course.

Take This Course

Introduction to adolescent mental health

This course aims to raise awareness of mental health and a range of adolescent mental health problems. It has been designed with the latest research evidence in mind. It aims to provide you with the tools to explore different approaches which will help you reflect on the different ways that you can identify a young person who is struggling and consider how they can access support.

You will get a free Open University digital badge for completing the course and passing the quizzes! The badge can be displayed, shared, and downloaded as a marker of your achievement. 

Take This Course

Managing Happiness

What is happiness? What makes you happy?’ Can you get happier through study and effort?

This, Harvard University designed course, answers these questions and shows you how you can use the answers to build a happier life. It introduces you to the modern science of human well-being and shows you how to practice it.

Advertisement

While the course is free to attend, you can get a verified certificate for $149 (on edX).

Take This Course

“Over the course of the past decade, there’s been increased willingness to recognize mental health as an essential part of one’s well-being.”

Nicole Spector

Mental Health Training for Teachers

This free online training course will help you identify mental health issues in adults and children in a school setting.

This course trains you to recognize mental health problems in colleagues or students in a school setting. When you recognize mental health signs or symptoms, you can offer help or refer them to professionals. This course discusses the complexity of mental health and equips you with the skills to support others to manage their mental health effectively.

A digital certificate is available on successful course completion for €21.00.

Take This Course

Advertisement

Making sense of mental health problems

In this free course, Making sense of mental health problems, you will learn about how key perspectives in the field have made sense of mental health problems. By directly relating key perspectives to a case study, you will reflect on how the medical perspective, psychological perspective, and social need perspective come to make sense of mental ill-health.

A free statement of participation is issued on completion of this course.

Take This Course

The Science of Well-Being

This course by Yale will engage you in a series of challenges designed to increase your own happiness and build more productive habits. 

As preparation for these tasks, the instructor reveals misconceptions about happiness, annoying features of the mind that lead us to think the way we do, and the research that can help us change. 

Enrollment in this course is free, however, certification is available on a paid basis.

Take This Course

Advertisement

Supporting children’s mental health and wellbeing

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • understand the influences on mental health in young children aged 0–5
  • identify the factors that contribute to good mental health in children
  • explore national and global influences on children’s mental health
  • develop knowledge about strategies and interventions to improve mental health in children
  • examine how adults and society can support children’s mental health and well-being.

Enrolling in this course will give you the opportunity to earn an Open University digital badge. Badges are not accredited by The Open University.

Take This Course

“Things not to say to someone with mental illness: Ignore it. Forget about it. Fight it. You are better than this. You are overthinking.”

Nitya Prakash

Suicide Prevention

This course explores the science of suicide research, prevention, and intervention.  

Topics will include terminology, epidemiology, historical and contemporary theories of suicide, modern approaches to suicide research, empirically supported approaches to prevention and intervention, and the lived experiences of those with suicidal thoughts and attempts.

Enrollment in this course is free, however, certification is available on a paid basis.

Take This Course

Advertisement

Teach Mental Health Literacy

In this course, educators will learn how to apply this classroom-ready, web-based, modular mental health curriculum resource as well as develop their own mental health literacy. 

Educators can then use this resource to successfully address mental health-related curriculum outcomes designed to be delivered by teachers to students aged 12 to 19.

Participation in this online course is free. An optional certificate of completion is available for $50 (Please select this option when you register as it cannot be selected once you finish the course).

Take This Course

Talk to Me: Improving mental health and suicide prevention in young adults

This course will help you learn strategies to improve the mental health of young people in your life, recognise concerning behaviours, and feel better prepared to have conversations about mental health.

Key topics in this MOOC include understanding contributing factors to poor mental health, how to talk about addressing poor mental health, and strategies to increase mental fitness.

Enrollment in this course is free, however, certification is available on a paid basis.

Advertisement

Take This Course

Mental Health and Nutrition

Interested in the fascinating interrelation between food and brain health?

This course is for you! This course is based on world-leading research into the links between nutrition and mental well-being. The course will cover evidence supporting the premise that eating better, and taking additional nutrients when appropriate, can improve mental health for many people.

Enrollment in this course is free, however, certification is available on a paid basis.

Take This Course

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Knowledge

Rashtrapati Bhavan to open for public viewing 5 days a week from 1st Dec

As per an official statement released by the President’s secretariat, people can visit the Rashtrapati Bhavan on the mentioned days in 5 time slots of one hour each.

Published

on

Rashtrapati Bhavan will be open for public viewing for five days a week from December 1, 2022.

The Rashtrapati Bhavan tour will be available on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday (except on Gazetted Holidays) in 5 time slots i.e. 1000-1100h, 1100-1200h, 1200-1300h, 1400-1500h, and 1500-1600h.

Apart from the Rashtrapati Bhavan tour, people can visit Rashtrapati Bhavan Museum Complex six days in a week from Tuesday to Sunday (except on Gazetted Holidays.)

Every Saturday, people can also witness the Change of Guard Ceremony at the Forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhavan from 0800 hrs to 0900 hrs. The Ceremony will not take place on Saturday if it is a Gazetted Holiday or if it is so notified by Rashtrapati Bhavan.

Visitors can learn more about the Rashtrapati Bhavan tours and book their slots online at the website.

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Knowledge

Tackling Gender Inequality from the Early Years

Strategies for building a gender-transformative pre-primary education system

Published

on

Education has the immense transformational power to combat social inequalities and gender bias – and our greatest opportunity lies in the potential to tackle these inequalities in the earliest years before they are consolidated.

After three decades of focused efforts on girls’ education and gender equality, we have made progress in reaching gender parity in school participation, with an increasing number of countries reaching equal access to education for both boys and girls.

Access to early childhood education has increased over the last two decades, with global enrolment rates showing gender parity in access among boys and girls.

Despite this gender parity in access, the pre-primary education system does not always deliver on its potential to tackle gender inequities and address harmful gender stereotypes while the youngest learners are absorbing them.

This research explores the ways in which pre-primary education can become more gender-transformative at a system level and presents 11 key strategies to support this goal.

The strategies are organized around five interconnected action areas: planning and budgeting; curriculum; workforce development; family and community engagement; and quality assurance.

Advertisement

These strategies can help governments and policymakers proactively incorporate gender responsiveness into the design and implementation of their pre-primary education policy and programming, following a system-wide perspective.

Download the report here.

Source: UNICEF – Office of Research-Innocenti

Continue Reading

Knowledge

The Mental Health Algorithm

Before we talk about how to help children with their mental health it is important to remind ourselves of a safety instruction used on airplanes- put on your oxygen mask first before helping others.

Published

on

Why have I called it an algorithm? Because mental health needs the following –

  • Decomposition- breaking the task into smaller, manageable tasks. Breaking mental health into smaller, manageable things to do every day
  • Pattern recognition- finding a pattern in how children behave when confronted with certain situations or stress
  • Abstraction- teaching ourselves to focus on what matters and ignore the other things, so when children misbehave focus on the why and not the how, what, and other clutter.
  • Algorithmic thinking- creating a set of steps to follow to help children cope with their emotions, talk about mental health and be happy.

Can young children suffer from depression, anxiety, stress, and trauma? The answer is yes. But what does this look like? It can be any of these behaviors or a combination of them-

  1. Children start having tantrums and start misbehaving
  2. Become moody
  3. Become aggressive
  4. They start bedwetting, and nail-biting.
  5. They are unable to focus or remember new learning
  6. They start over or undereating.
  7. Suffer from lack of sleep and start dozing off during the day.

Parents and teachers should be worried if these last for more than two weeks consistently.

Dr. Maria Kovacs, professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine says that when young children are depressed “the primary mood is irritability not sadness- children come across as being very cranky. The best way for parents and teachers to recognize depression in young children is not so much by what a child says as by what the child does- or stops doing.”

Dr. Helen Egger until recently the chair of child and adolescent psychiatry at NYU Langone Health says, “ in a preschool-aged child depression may look like a behaviour problem but is really driven by what the child is feeling inside.”

But before we talk about how to help children with their mental health it is important to remind ourselves of a safety instruction used on airplanes- put on your oxygen mask first before helping others. Adults who take care of children especially teachers must first take care of their mental health and give it importance because if they do not consider it an important aspect of holistic health then they will never be able to take care of the mental health of their students. Teachers go through a lot of stress, and anxiety which if bottled up for a long time can trigger serious mental health issues.

Causes of stress in teachers-

  1. Inability to handle workplace politics
  2. Struggling with issues at the home and family front
  3. The guilt of not being able to give their best to the special needs children in their class
  4. Inability to handle workload due to lack of time management, prioritization and other issues.
  5. Nervousness about handling upset parents.

So let’s code teacher’s mental health-

Taking care of your mental health should become a part of your daily routine, make time for it and prioritize it –

Advertisement
  1. Set some time aside every day to unwind.
  2. Plan and prioritize – time management is an extremely important life skill, but is not taught to us in any course. Learn and imbibe it. Don’t use your brain to remember tasks, for that keep a diary or a reminder on your phone. Brains get stressed when we only use them to remember things, brains are for logic and thinking.
  3. Set boundaries- especially for your texts, messages and emails, and most importantly social media.
  4. Appreciate your skills and learn new ones- never stop learning, as they say still water stagnates.
  5. Move. Move. – don’t ignore physical exercise.
  6. Seek help. Seek support. Seek advice- don’t struggle alone with your personal or professional dilemmas, seek the right support.

Teaching Coping and resilience-

It is said that those who survived the pandemic without facing mental health issues are those who were resilient. What is resiliency? It means the ability to bounce back from difficult situations, it means the ability to feel the negative emotions, let them wash over you like a super wave but not allowing them to engulf or drown you, it means surviving with your emotional health intact.

To be resilient one has to learn coping skills, and these need to be taught to children from a young age. Children learn by imitation so they will learn how to cope with the adults in their environment, hence it is important that we display good coping skills.

Coping is nothing but the ability to ‘turn down’ your reaction to a situation, emotion, or stress.

Some coping skills to teach children are-

  1. Self-soothing- engage the body in a ritual of natural calming- deep breathing, counting to ten etc
  2. Distraction- redirecting your attention to something more interesting and positive- look outside the window, start dancing, clap your hands, etc
  3. Mindfulness- focussing on your feelings and what is happening to your body and how to calm down and reclaim your emotions. – deep breathing, labelling the emotion, knowing positive ways to react to that emotion instead of choosing negative ways.

Try these breathing games with children

Mindfulness is the key…

The ability to reflect upon what is happening, while it is happening is called Mindfulness.  Mindfulness helps children be aware of their emotions and feelings and they are then better able to control and voice out their emotions. It works for everyone, have you ever said something that you later regret? Well, it means you were not ‘mindful’ about your speech, you blurted out whatever you were thinking and feeling! You responded to a stimulus without pausing and ‘thinking’. Mindfulness is the pause that you take between a stimulus and a reaction. Teaching this to children will help them move from ‘I can’t, I don’t want.” to understanding ‘I can, Why I don’t want, what should I do.’

Advertisement

Mindfulness is being aware or mindful of your body and its needs and condition and meditation is the ability to control your body to calm your thoughts. That is why meditation requires an upright-seated posture. Deep breathing exercises while sitting upright with the eyes closed, is a great combination of both mindfulness and meditation.

One of the simplest mindfulness activities is to get children to close their eyes and listen to their breathing. Ask questions like-

  • Can you hear your breathing?
  • How is it fast or slow?
  • Put your hand on your chest, can you feel your heartbeat?

Now make them do rigorous jumping and then stop and again ask them the same questions, and ask them what is the difference in their breathing and heartbeat now? Now make them sit down, close their eyes, and take deep breaths in and out – now how do they feel?

The above will help children feel their breath, and their heartbeat and understand how their breathing and heartbeat change when they do any physical activity, it also changes when they are upset or angry. Explain to them what to do when they experience these feelings…take a deep breath to calm down and think.

Emotional labelling –

Out-of-control emotions can make smart people stupid.- Daniel Goleman

In the early years, emotions and feelings are something that children are experiencing for the first time and it can lead to a lot of confusion if we always ask them to ‘behave’, ‘don’t cry’ etc. because then they throw tantrums and have meltdowns. But there is a way we can have a balance between ignoring a strong emotion and completely indulging in it, it is called ‘affect labelling’ or ‘emotion labelling’. By labelling something we are able to understand and acknowledge it and thus able to deal with it or quell it.

In any stressful situation, children experience a range of emotions and feelings of fear, boredom, irritability, sadness, etc. How we help them acknowledge those feelings or help them find acceptable ways of releasing them, will define their positive emotional development, which will also impact their social and cognitive development.

Advertisement
How can early childhood educators and parents help enhance emotional development in the early years?
  1. Help children identify and label their feelings and thus enable them to deal with them appropriately. Use sentences like these to help them label emotions, “I see you are angry because you did not get the blue crayon…..”, or “I see you are sad that your friend did not sit next to you…..” and then extend the sentences to help enable them to cope with the emotions, “….but you can colour with the red one till the blue one is available.” Or “….but you can sit with Yash today and maybe share with him all the fun.”
  2. Stories and story characters can be used as an important tool to help kids cope with and understand emotions. Use appropriate stories and then use discussion starters like-
  • Talking and discussing the emotions shown by the story characters, both positive and negative.
  • Asking the children how they think a character felt at the end of a story or when something important happened in the story. E.g. “How do you think baby bear felt on seeing his chair broken?”
  • Asking the children what they would do to help the character in the story feel better. E.g. “If you were Goldilocks what would you do to make the baby bear feel better?”
  1. Accept emotional responses; learn to teach them to reject the emotional behaviour or to channel it. For example, if a child bites someone, the feeling is of anger or frustration. So teach the child to acknowledge the emotion by saying, “I know you are feeling angry or frustrated that you are unable to get a chance on the slide but you can talk to me about it but it is not acceptable to bite or hit someone.”

Use this new version of ‘Where is Thumbkin?’ to help children label emotions and understand safe and acceptable ways of showing emotion or dealing with it.

Let’s talk about mental health and arm the child with the ability to cope, and this comes from emotional intelligence,  so understand children’s emotional needs and give the support and care required to strengthen their emotional armour and mental health.

Happiness can always be found, even in the darkest of times, if only one remembers to turn on the light.” – Dumbledore.

About the author:

Dr. Swati Popat Vats is President, Early Childhood Association India, Association for Primary Education & Research, and Podar Education Network.

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Knowledge

UNICEF urges governments to invest in building safe drinking water systems

Universal access to safe drinking water requires increased investment backed by strong government institutions – WHO, UNICEF, and World Bank

Published

on

Image - © UNICEF/UN0389288

Governments must invest strategically in building safe drinking water systems by not only increasing funding, but also strengthening capacities to plan, coordinate, and regulate service provision, if the world is to achieve universal access to safe drinking water and mitigate the effects of climate change, say WHO, UNICEF, and the World Bank in a report released today.

The State of the World’s Drinking Water report notes that over 2 billion people have gained access to safe drinking water in the past two decades.  This progress, while positive, is fragile and inequitable with one-quarter of the world’s population left behind.  Climate change is increasing the frequency and intensity of droughts and floods, which exacerbate water insecurity, disrupt supplies, and devastate communities.  Meanwhile, rapid urbanization is increasing the strain on cities’ capacity to deliver water to the millions of people living in informal communities and slums.

“Providing greater access to safe drinking water has saved many lives, most of them children. But climate change is eating into those achievements,” said Dr. Maria Neira, WHO Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health. “We have to accelerate our efforts to ensure every person has reliable access to safe drinking water something that is a human right, not a luxury.”

The report provides a comprehensive review of the links between water, health, and development, with actionable recommendations for governments and partners, illustrated by examples of how countries are contributing to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target of reaching safely managed drinking water for all by 2030.

“Investing in water and sanitation is critical to health, economic growth, and the environment. Healthier children become healthier adults who then contribute more to the economy and society”, said Saroj Kumar Jha, Director, Global Director, of World Bank Group’s Water Global Practice. “This principle is at the core of the World Bank’s Human Capital Project. Governments and the private sector must take critical action now to accelerate inclusive and sustainable water supply and sanitation services in both urban and rural areas.”

To provide universal access to safe drinking water by 2030, governments and partners must dramatically increase political commitment to drinking water and quadruple investments.  The report provides comprehensive recommendations to enact sustainable improvements that address infrastructure, governance, finance, capacity development, data and information, and innovation, even with limited budgets.

Advertisement

Overarching recommendations include:

  • Strengthen existing institutions by filling gaps, facilitating coordination, establishing a regulatory environment supported by legislation and standards for service quality, and ensuring enforcement.
  • Increase funding from all sources dramatically, with water service providers improving efficiency and performance, and governments providing a stable and transparent administrative, regulatory, and policy environment.
  • Build capacity within the water sector by developing a capable and motivated workforce through a range of capacity-development approaches based on innovation and collaboration.
  • Ensure relevant data and information are available to better understand inequalities in drinking water services and make evidence-based decisions.
  • Encourage innovation and experimentation through supportive government policy and regulation, accompanied by rigorous monitoring and evaluation.

“No child should be faced with the choice of drinking dirty water – a leading killer of children – or making dangerous journeys to collect water and missing out on school,” said Aidan Cronin, UNICEF Interim Director of Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) and Climate, Environment, Energy, and Disaster Risk Reduction (CEED). “Accessible and reliable safe drinking water is fundamental to ensuring children are healthy, educated, and thriving.”

About UNICEF

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across more than 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone.

Continue Reading

Knowledge

Rejoice the NCF for foundational years is here!

ECA-APER is organizing its first workshop cum discussion on the NCF on the 12th of November in Mumbai.

Published

on

One of the lacunas in our early childhood education programs, both at the government and private level was the lack of a proper curriculum and framework for early years. We have ratified the UN convention of rights for children, in which ECE is a goal and commitment but yet we had never invested enough or committed to a proper curriculum and assessment that is developmentally appropriate.

That is why it is time to rejoice that the NCF is here, it’s not time to crib or lament that it is 75 years late!

This NCF is different from all other previous attempts in the following manner-

  1. Look at any document’s glossary of terms and one can understand the robustness of the document. Terms like curricular goals, competency, decoding, developmental delays, developmental goals, domains of development, emotional intelligence, encoding, experiential learning, integrated learning, holistic progress card, inclusion, multilingualism, spatial skills, subitizing, whole language approach, mapping competencies – all these inform us that the document is not just a vision but shows the pathway, the tools, and the training to achieve the goals set by the NEP-2020
  2. A lacuna that still exists in our country is the lack of a structured common ECE teacher training program that can be commonly implemented for all states and government and private schools alike- like we have the B.Ed. program. But this framework works as a teacher training and teacher guidance tool that will become the guru, mentor, and teacher for all ECE teachers.
  3. Parents can use this document to judge the quality of early childhood education programs before they enroll their children. Now parents can interview the school on areas of the NCF instead of the schools interviewing the child!
  4. Indian Pioneers like Gijubhai Badheka, Tarabai Modak, Anutai Wagh, and Gandhi are acknowledged in this document and so are global pioneers like Rousseau, Froebel, Dewey, Montessori Jerome Bruner, Vygotsky, Piaget, Bronfenbrenner, all are covered.

Overall I would give 10 out of 10 to this 360-page NCF as it scores heavily on research, the vastness of areas covered, and a great combination of curriculum, assessment, and teacher training. Easy reading, clear explanations, clearly mapped to the NIPUN document, and a much necessary connection to the James Heckman theory on return on investment in ECE.

ECA-APER is organizing its first workshop cum discussion on the NCF on the 12th of November in Mumbai, and later on in other cities too. For more details log on to

 www.eca-aper.org

About the author:

Advertisement

Dr. Swati Popat Vats is the Founder President, Early Childhood Association & Association for Primary Education and Research

Continue Reading

Knowledge

10 useful infographics for teachers

Teachers can use infographics to teach their students about any topic, in any subject. Here is a curation of 10 useful infographics for teachers.

Published

on

Infographics are visual tools that break down complex information by using charts, graphs, pictures, diagrams, statistics, and data.

Teachers can use infographics to teach their students about any topic, in any subject.

  1. Infographics are ideal for highlighting key events throughout a historical period.
  2. Adding graphics and short text explanations makes statistics easier to understand and remember.
  3. An infographic can educate your audience about an important issue while teaching them how and why to take action.
  4. Infographics can be great tools to help people think creatively and learn new ways to apply their skills and knowledge to tasks.
  5. Infographics can teach your audience how to complete a complex procedure.
  6. Infographics can help your audience learn more about an event.
  7. Infographics are a good mechanism to approach differently-abled children with special needs.

Here is a curation of 10 useful infographics for teachers which will help them with their lesson planning, professional development, and classroom management.

Continue Reading

Knowledge

Online presentation tools for the classroom

In this article, we feature 5 of the best free tools teachers can use to create awesome slideshows and presentations.

Published

on

Image by Esa Riutta/Pixabay

Once upon a time, presentations meant PowerPoint. And using PowerPoint meant excellent presentation skills, creativity, and maybe some designing skills.

These cool tools will be of great help to the teacher with minimal demands.

Canva

Educators can use Canva’s web-based tool to design stunning visuals and presentations that will engage their students. Canva contains hundreds of beautifully designed layouts to create presentations, social media creatives, videos, printables, and handouts on any topic. Making an interesting presentation is as simple as choosing the perfect images (over 1 million stock images are available), fonts, and colours. Check out Canva’s Design School for more inspiration.

Emaze

Emaze makes it easy for teachers to create fun, interactive lessons that keep their students “zoomed in”. With Emaze’s out-of-the-box templates, even teachers without technology background can build lessons that combine video, sound, and text.

Google Slides

Using Google Slides, educators can create, edit and present wherever and whenever they need. This free tool from Google contains a variety of presentation themes, hundreds of fonts, embedded video, animations, and more. It gives the teacher the ability to access, create, and edit presentations on the go — from a phone, tablet, or computer — even when there’s no connection.

Keynote
(Apple devices only)

Keynote makes it easy to create stunning and memorable presentations and comes included with most Apple devices. A simple, intuitive interface puts important tools front and center, so you can easily add beautiful charts, edit photos and incorporate cinematic effects.

Advertisement

SlideDog

SlideDog is a multimedia presentation tool that lets you combine PowerPoint presentations, PDF files, Prezi presentations, movie clips, web pages, and more into one innovative, seamless viewing and audience interaction experience.

Do Let us know your favourite online presentation tool and mention any tool you think needs to be on this list and isn’t there.

Continue Reading

Knowledge

Becoming a 21st Century Teacher!!!

How do you teach? Should today’s students learn the same way their teachers did?

Published

on

Step back and look at the days gone by… your own days. What were the skills we needed to survive 20 years ago?

How do you teach? Should today’s students learn the same way their teachers did?

If we teach today as we were taught yesterday, we rob our children of tomorrow.

John Dewey

What are the 21st-century skills every student needs to survive and succeed in today’s world?

What abilities and traits will serve them in a time that’s changing and developing so rapidly?

Let us think about how our world has changed in education.

Advertisement

Twenty-two years ago, when I was in school, all I remember are my teachers. Not the content, not the pedagogy, not the methodology. Not even the tests they gave or the marks I scored. My fondest memories as a school-going child are those of my friends and teachers. The bonds we forged, the memories we made, the connections we built, and the impact created. ‘Marks are but numbers’ is what I have learned over the years as a student-turned-teacher. What matters most now are skills, demeanour, resilience, and the zeal to do something. The ignited passion and the kindled flame go a longer way than report cards. We hear a lot about how important it is for today’s students to develop their 21st-century skills, in addition to what is often referred to as the basics. These are the skills, dispositions, and attitudes that our students will need to thrive in their future lives of work and play and will have global acceptance at the same time.

But all of this does not come on its own. A lot of it depends on the teachers. Since times immemorial we have witnessed the teacher creating an indelible impression on the learner’s mind, not through the content knowledge but through the connection with the child. Gone are the days when education depended on textbooks, green board & chalk, and report cards. Marks matter but more importantly the attitude towards learning and the desire to create, innovate and collaborate mark the 21st Century traits of a teacher and a learner. Earlier, teachers taught the subject but a 21st-century teacher needs to teach the student.

CHARACTERISTICS OF 21ST CENTURY TEACHER

  • Learner-Centered Classroom and Personalized Instructions
  • Committed to students and their learning
  • Project-Based Learning
  • Learn New Technologies
  • Collaborate & Connect
  • Innovate & Keep Learning
  • Think Globally & are tech savvy
  • Develop sensitivity towards cross-cultural differences and diversity
  • Build partnerships and alliances beyond classrooms
  • No child left behind (NCLB)

Learners should be conditioned by their learning to be:

  • Inquirers
  • Inquisitors
  • Communicators
  • Appreciative of diversity
  • Compassionate
  • Courageous
  • Risk-takers
  • Tenacious
  • Reflective
  • Responsible

A good teacher can inspire, hope, ignite the imagination and instill a love of learning.

Brand Henry

How do we teach these skills?

  • Make it relevant
  • Teach through the disciplines
  • Develop lower & higher order thinking skills
  • Encourage transfer of learning
  • Teach students to learn to learn
  • Address misunderstandings directly
  • Promote teamwork
  • Exploit technology
  • Foster creativity
  • Provide opportunities
  • Build trust & connect

The 21st Century teacher is the adapter, communicator, learner, visionary, leader, mentor, model, caregiver, collaborator, and risk taker.

Obviously, teaching in the 21st Century is a different phenomenon altogether, especially with the kind of exposure and technological advancement. When thinking about education in the last 25 years, a lot has changed. From textbooks to tablets, from chalk & duster to padlet, from green board to smartboard, from taboos and stigmas to open discussions, from being intimidated and apprehensive to being confident and inquisitive, from being the sage on the stage to the guide by the side, from teacher talk and monologues to active learning & flipped classroom; a lot has evolved.

However, the 21st Century teacher knows that the learner is the most important stakeholder and center of focus and for as long as education revolves around students and their holistic growth, it will never fade out or weaken its value.

Advertisement

About the author:

A passionate educator & an enthusiastic public speaker, Dr. Pooja Jain is currently the Head of the English Department at The Assam Valley School, Assam.

Continue Reading

Knowledge

Universalizing Education and Skilling using Metaverse

‘Metaverse’ can be a real-time ecosystem that overcomes the limitations of geographical boundaries to offer services to users.

Published

on

Have you played any online games like Caesar, Game of Thrones, Building Farms and trading its food grains, or taken a virtual tour of a city or a new housing project? If your answer is ‘Yes’ or you are aware that such online games or virtual tours exist, then you have already tasted ‘Metaverse’. Further, if you or your child has tried using a VR headset to play games or taken a virtual tour of a museum using AR technology, then too, you have already experienced ‘Metaverse’ at a small scale.

Have you seen the Hollywood movie ‘Avatar’ or SRK’s Bollywood movie ‘Ra.One’? If ‘yes’, then you have experienced a glimpse of ‘Metaverse’ on your TV/mobile already. Further, imagine tomorrow experiencing Google Earth giving you a facility to walk on the roads virtually or you finding a way virtually through Google Maps. Imagine you buying a house property in Metaverse and also being able to sell it for money. This can be possible in near future.

The ‘pandemic’ has given us the importance of connecting the physical world, virtually. Without internet penetration and smartphone technology enhancements important services like education, jobs, and banking would have come to halt during the lockdown, the world over. ‘Metaverse’ is one such need of the future.

What is ‘Metaverse’?

‘Metaverse’ refers to a three-dimensional (3D) virtual world combining aspects of online gaming, social media, virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and devices like haptic gears (VR-based suits, gloves, headsets) to create an extended reality (XR), where users can use their senses, body motions and interact virtually and experience the immersive, life-like 3D world. Integration of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and the Internet of Things (IoT) can facilitate functions of limitless interactions and seamless integrations of data.

‘Metaverse’ is currently in a nascent stage, which will bring in a highly immersive user experience beyond the current two-dimensional browsing and socializing experience. ‘Metaverse’ can be a real-time ecosystem that overcomes the limitations of geographical boundaries to offer services to users. ‘Metaverse’ can make you create a digital version of yourself and it can be in the form of an ‘Avatar’ profile. The physical world can be mirrored in the ‘Metaverse’.

Advertisement

According to a recent Citi report, Metaverse could generate up to $13 trillion in value for businesses around the world by 2030.

‘Metaverse’ in Education and Skilling?

‘Metaverse’ can be the next evolution of EdTech—from the use of conventional teaching aids to using AR/XR for a never experienced engaging experience.

Imagine you or a student swimming through the sea and playing with fish sitting in a living room or a student going on a field trip in a factory/farm or taking a walk on the moon without leaving the study desk. Imagine students using VR on a virtual field trip to Antarctica to learn about climate change instead of just watching a recorded video. Imagine a history teacher instead of lecturing on the Harappa civilization takes the students to Harappa and Mohenjo Daro virtually through VR tools and devices. Imagine a doctoral student dissecting a frog to learn anatomy or doing a surgical operation on an Avatar and learning surgery. Imagine a 3D virtual classroom where students irrespective of their geographical location can virtually meet and interact with their classmates and teachers.

‘Metaverse’ can also contribute towards skilling and re-skilling the workforce.

A fully immersive experience can help speed up the pace of learning and improve retention of even some complex concepts. The use of technology can also reduce the cost of purchasing and maintaining expensive equipment for training purposes.

Imagine a fresh automobile engineer from a tier 2-3 town in India getting a virtual tour of an automobile assembly floor and learn fixing repairs or design a sedan car. Imagine a fresh mechanical engineer getting a walk-through of a manufacturing plant.

Advertisement

Automobile companies can develop virtual courses on managing manufacturing workflows in factories or FMCG companies training their staff on supply chain management operations. This reduces onboarding costs and also the cost associated with building training centers. Immersive simulations can be done for automotive, electronics, and biomedical engineering, material design, material synthesis, and fine arts.

Education and skilling through ‘Metaverse’ can make learning more engaging, and improve learning outcomes. Universities offering online education programs can enhance their learning deliveries and make students experience real-world challenges through Metaverse.

Challenges?

‘Metaverse’ is believed still to be in the nascent stage (developing), so proven cases are yet to stabilise and replicable.

Some challenges in developing Metaverse are:

  • An effective and strong 5G network will be a prerequisite to developing Metaverse for mass use.
  • Affordability in terms of costs of hardware tools like VR gadgets and goggles. Though the current cost is expensive, improvements in technology will reduce the costs gradually. Users require light and affordable AR/VR devices and fully immersive content of the highest quality.
  • Software and hardware investment costs for institutions and corporate for imparting education and training would be initially on a higher level.
  • The cost of learning for students and workers will be high initially.
  • Cyber security
  • Addiction and Mental Health of users
  • Privacy & Data Security
  • Digital Payments
  • Law and Jurisdiction
  • Lack of Tech experts

Career Opportunities:

Since ‘Metaverse’ will be a next-gen technology platform, there will be a growing need for tech experts who can develop, build, operate and maintain it. There will be a growing need for tech experts like Developers, Programmers, Coders, Game developers, VR developers, 3D tech experts, AR experts, AI experts, ML experts, Blockchain experts, IoT experts, cyber security experts, and hardware engineers.

‘Metaverse’ can be the future to impart close-to-life education and training, without physical intervention. Companies and educational institutions need to invest in building a ‘Metaverse’ for their workforce capability enhancement and young student training, respectively.

Advertisement

Continue Reading

Newsletter

Advertisement
Inspiration10 hours ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: Richa Prasant’s journey from Corporate world to Classrooms

Inspiration2 days ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: Fighting Goons to Educate Children

Knowledge3 days ago

11 Free Mental Health Courses for Teachers

Inspiration6 days ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: AROH Foundation striving for Women Empowerment

Inspiration1 week ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: Anubha Sharma shares the story of AngelXpress Foundation

News1 week ago

New school timings from December 1 in Haryana

News1 week ago

NIOS celebrates 33rd Foundation Day

Inspiration1 week ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: The story of Kaliyuva Mane, ‘home for learning’

Inspiration1 week ago

Teacher Warriors 2022: The Inspiration We Need

News1 week ago

TCS to train UP Govt Schools for the underprivileged in Computational Thinking

News1 week ago

Consultation on draft National Credit Framework (NCrF) at IIT Delhi

Knowledge2 weeks ago

Rashtrapati Bhavan to open for public viewing 5 days a week from 1st Dec

Inspiration2 weeks ago

10 Professional Development Books Teachers Can Read with a Kindle Unlimited subscription

News2 weeks ago

39 Schools Awarded Swachh Vidyalaya Puraskar 2021-22

News2 weeks ago

28th edition of CBSE Sahodaya Schools Conference begins at Vadodara

Knowledge2 weeks ago

Tackling Gender Inequality from the Early Years

News2 weeks ago

National Sports Awards 2022 Announced

News2 weeks ago

ATL Schools across India celebrate Childrens’ Day

News3 weeks ago

HPS Begumpet Hosts Curtain Raiser for Centenary Celebrations

Knowledge3 weeks ago

The Mental Health Algorithm

News3 weeks ago

Ladakh sets a new benchmark in education: PGI 2020-2021

News4 weeks ago

Primary schools in Delhi to reopen on November 9

News4 weeks ago

Performance Grading Index for States/UTs for the year 2020-21 released

News4 weeks ago

Ministry of Education signs MoU with FIFA and AIFF

Knowledge1 month ago

UNICEF urges governments to invest in building safe drinking water systems

Knowledge3 weeks ago

The Mental Health Algorithm

News2 months ago

UNESCO launches 2022 State of the Education Report for India

ScooReviews2 months ago

Empower Students and Recognise Skills with Classroom Badges

News2 months ago

CCL-IIT Gandhinagar and ScooNews announce nationwide S.T.E.A.M. Yatra

News3 months ago

Shikshak Parv 2022 inaugurated

News3 months ago

52000 Indian teachers to take Oath on Teachers’ Day

Knowledge3 days ago

11 Free Mental Health Courses for Teachers

Knowledge3 months ago

7 of the Best Free PowerPoint Template Websites

Knowledge3 months ago

How can Schools benefit from Digital Certificates and Badges?

News3 months ago

PM to address Grand Finale of Smart India Hackathon 2022

Knowledge2 months ago

Becoming a 21st Century Teacher!!!

Knowledge2 months ago

Online presentation tools for the classroom

Knowledge2 months ago

Universalizing Education and Skilling using Metaverse

Inspiration1 month ago

In Giving is Empowerment

News2 weeks ago

National Sports Awards 2022 Announced

Inspiration3 months ago

Be a Reader Forever

News3 months ago

PM announces PM-SHRI Yojana

News3 weeks ago

HPS Begumpet Hosts Curtain Raiser for Centenary Celebrations

News3 months ago

First Virtual School of India

Inspiration2 weeks ago

10 Professional Development Books Teachers Can Read with a Kindle Unlimited subscription

ScooReviews3 months ago

My Good School – Where Passion Meets Education

News3 months ago

PM interacts with winners of National Awards to Teachers

News2 months ago

Government of Goa announces Digital Goa Scholarship Program

News3 months ago

Jodhamal’s Harmanjot interacts with PM Modi

News2 months ago

DGT launches Bharatskills Forum

Knowledge3 months ago

Keynote Address | Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar

Knowledge3 months ago

Anurag Tripathi, Secretary, CBSE at SGEF2022

Inspiration3 months ago

How schools can nurture every student’s genius

Knowledge3 months ago

Aftermovie | SGEF2022 | Jaipur

Knowledge4 months ago

Li Andersson | Minister of Education | Finland

Knowledge5 months ago

Anurag Tripathi, Secretary, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) discusses NEP2020

Knowledge4 years ago

ScooNews | Early Ed Asia 2019 | Aftermovie

News4 years ago

#PodarECEconf : Pursuing quality ECE

News5 years ago

#CBSE Class XII #Results #Highlights

Education6 years ago

The interesting story of India’s educational system | Adhitya Iyer

Inspiration6 years ago

A young scientist’s quest for clean water

Inspiration6 years ago

The Danger of Silence: Clint Smith

Knowledge6 years ago

National Digital Library of India is an initiative by HRD Ministry

Inspiration6 years ago

Remembering Kalpana Chawla on her birthday!

Inspiration6 years ago

Message from Sadhguru for Students!

Inspiration6 years ago

Message from Sadhguru for Students!

Inspiration6 years ago

The Untapped Genius That Could Change Science for the Better

Education6 years ago

Eddy Zhong: How school makes kids less intelligent [email protected]

Education6 years ago

#TEDxCanberra : What if every child had access to music education…

Education6 years ago

Confessions of a Megaphone – Shrutidhar Paliwal – TED Talk

Inspiration6 years ago

TED Talk: Bill Gates on Education and Good Teachers

Education6 years ago

Bring on the Learning Revolution! | Ken Robinson

News6 years ago

Art With A Heart by Jayshree Periwal International School Students

Inspiration6 years ago

Afghan teen rapper sings to end child marriage

Inspiration6 years ago

This village school values its girl children.

Trending