Teach to Know or Teach to do?
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” ― Benjamin Franklin
The archaic argument of ‘what we teach in the classroom becomes irrelevant in the tech enabled corporate world’ has finally found its anchor in the awareness that it is important to empower young individuals to be innovative and inquisitive. We do not teach to churn out misfits in real life scenarios. So how do we bridge this divide? Can all knowledge be acquired through application or should there be a formal training on the concepts which can then be utilised to migrate to application? This debate will ensue. One way or the other, the only thing that is defining here is the evolution from learning to increase our knowledge with concepts and theoretical knowledge to training a person in the process of application to acquire knowledge through tools that are used in the work environment. This shift in modus operandi should prepare the receiver to apply those concepts and the transfer of learning from theory to application.
There are several methods that can be employed to make the learning approach more practical oriented such as:
2. Group learnings
3. Analogies and Metaphors
4. Blended learning methodologies
Teaching today is more than handing out subject knowledge. A teacher plays the role of a mentor, facilitator, counsellor etc. Teaching is a challenging responsibility of grooming holistic individuals who are sharp in their thinking, sensitive in their approach yet tech savvy and smart in grasping the effervescence of the work world. But this cannot take away the importance of the involvement of students to acquire hands-on training and enjoy the class, irrespective of whether it is Arts, Science or Commerce. A teacher’s job never ends at following the lesson plan. It extends to leading them to be confident enterprising educators, and innovators.
Our country is blessed with demographic dividend, but not skilled aptly. We face something called as talent shortage. It is time for us to cash in on the demographic dividend lest it turns into a disaster. To successfully pursue this, it is required to teach students to be job ready, teach them to apply rather than to learn, help them to distinguish and identify.
Learning to be effective has to be a self-guided discovery. It is the difference between knowing that and knowing how. It is imperative that we create a generation of job seekers who know how to effectively discharge their responsibilities than having a group of job seekers with degrees that cannot be effectively utilised.
This is very much contrary to what satirist George Bernard Shaw said when he quoted “Those who can do, those who can’t teach”. A teacher is more than just a dispenser of knowledge. They not only educate a generation in terms of improving their knowledge. They play a multifaceted role of inspiring, learning and changing. Much of what life has to prepare you for is never found in textbooks. Hence the teacher should digress, bend the rules, laugh a little, and relate to the students.
“Those who know, do. Those that understand, teach.” ― Aristotle
Author: Mark John; Co-author: Benila Jacob