SARVA SHIKSHA ABHIYAN (SSA)
Objectives of U E E in Karnataka
The main objectives of the numerous initiatives of the Government of Karnataka towards universalization of elementary education are:
! To ensure that all 6-14 year old children are in classes 1-8 by 2007.
! To ensure that all required infrastructure and human resources for providing eight years of free, compulsory, relevant and quality education are in place by 2007
! To ensure that education becomes a means of genuine empowerment of the individual to achieve his/her full potential by 2007
! To ensure that the learning process is made locally relevant, child-centered, activity-based and joyful by 2007
! To ensure that educational management is decentralized to the community and that the community takes ownership to ensure children’s right to education by 2007.
Objectives of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan:
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan is an effort towards the long cherished goal of Universalization of Elementary Education (U E E) through a time bound integrated approach.
It aims at providing community owned quality elementary education in the mission mode for all children in the age group of 6-14 by 2010.
It also envisages bridging the gender and social gaps.
The Objectives of S S A are:
All children in school by 2003
All children complete five years of primary schooling by 2007.
All children complete 8 years of schooling by 2010.
Focus on quality with emphasis on education for life.
Bridge all gender and social category gaps at primary stage by 2007.
Universal retention by 2010
The strategies central to S S A are:
Institutional Reforms & capacity building.
Community ownership & monitoring.
Focus on education for girls & special groups.
Thrust on Quality & teacher development.
Habitation as a unit of planning.
Improving educational administration.
The S S A envisages providing 20 days training to every primary teacher in a year. During 2003 – 04, 2,03,809 teachers have been trained between 5 days and 20 days during the year. Majority of the programs are being conducted during vacations.
The following training programs were given to the teachers:
1. Chaitanya 1 and 2 (activity based teaching methodology) in Kannada, Urdu, Tamil and Telugu.
2. Experiments in teaching Science
3. Life Sciences Education
4. Shikshanadalli Rangakale (Dramatisation in Education)
5. Chaitanya Tarani (Preparation of TLM)
6. Content Enrichment in Languages and core subjects
7. English Language Training program
9. Physical education
10. Analysis of Text Books
11. Action research
12. Head Teachers Training Program
13. SUPW Training
14. Yoga and Value Education
15. Integrated Education
16. Education Technology
17. Multi Grade and Multi level Teaching
18. CRC level Monthly Experience sharing workshops
Chaitanya Training Program:
Karnataka is one of the few states where the modified version of SOPT was successful. The success of this program was due to the culmination of the content from SOPT, methodology from DPEP and certain special features from NALI - KALI. Chaitanya program evolved as a modified SOPT (Special Orientation for Primary Teachers). This program included the following pedagogic issues: NALI - KALI, activity based methodology, MLL (minimum Levels of Learning), Multi grade teaching, integrated education for the physically challenged and gender sensitization. Chaitanya Program envisages empowering the teacher to make learning joyful for the child.
On the basis of Minimum Levels of Learning, the competencies which have to be developed in a child in each subject in every class at the primary level have been identified. Care was taken to make the content in each subject child centered, competency based, activity oriented and joyful learning for the child.
The effective use of text books in reaching the desired learning levels in a child, the use of extra curricular activities in developing and enriching the personality of the child, development of a healthy environment within the school, effective involvement of the community in all the academic activities of the school are all issues which desire the serious attention of every teacher.
The training module was prepared on these principles in three subjects – Kannada, Mathematics and Environmental Sciences and the Master Resource Persons were trained by DSERT, and the actual training of the teachers was conducted through the DIETs and BRCs.
All the lower primary teachers in the state have been trained under the Chaitanya program. This large number of teacher participation in the program reveals that the teachers owned and accepted this program enabling the teachers to bring out their talents. This program also helped in joyful learning by children. Because of cascade mode of training, transmission loss was also noticed. Further the administrators were not given training initially leading to confusion. However this lacuna in the training was set right later, by giving training to administrators, educational coordinators, teacher educators, etc as well.
Based on the Chaitanya and Nali Kali models new child centered text books with activity based methodology has been introduced in all the classes.
Chaitanya II ( for HPS teachers)
Chaitanya II for teachers of HPS is an advanced version of Chaitanya for lower primary schools. Training module was in five disciplines viz., Kannada, English, Mathematics, Science and Social Science. The modules were prepared in Kannada, Urdu and Marathi languages.
More importance was given to the content. At that level the children need to be helped in attaining mastery in content and teachers also expressed the need for the same.80,000 teachers of Higher Primary schools were trained.
Chaitanya Tarani – (Training in use of TLM - Teaching – Learning Materials) DSERT has developed a module “CHAITANYA TARANI” to enable the teachers to understand the numerous possibilities available in preparation and use of TLM out of low cost and no cost materials. The competencies of children can be developed better through activities only. This results in the teacher trying to acquire the capacity to improve his class room transaction through the use of innovative techniques.
Teachers are already aware of the benefits in use of TLM in the daily class room. Therefore what is required is for the teacher to acquire the capability to take up supplementary activities through the effective use of TLM. The program envisages materials which are not too costly or out of reach of ordinary children.
Literature available in the preparation and use of TLM in Kannada is very limited and does not cover all situations. This module envisages to fill the gap. Apart from the text book, the children need a whole lot of experience to enable them to learn. This is where the importance of good TLM comes in. But the TLM prepared by the teachers should not be looked upon as a burden by the teachers. This is possible only when the teachers know how to use these materials effectively in the class room transaction.
Learning should directly revolve around the direct experiences of the child. The child should also learn to use the materials effectively and learn through them. The teaching learning process can revolve round various activities, situations, dialogues, discussion, dramatisation that the teacher can create in the class room.
The TLM prepared can also be evaluated for their usefulness. Certain materials can be developed and maintained by the children themselves. The teachers should also use the community resources to develop and exhibit TLM so that they become a source of inspiration to others.
The Module details how the different types of TLM can be prepared and effectively used in the class room. More than one lakh teachers are trained under this program.
Shikshanadalli Rangakale:(Dramatization in Education) This is an innovative program of DSERT, which helps teachers in the use of dramatization techniques in teaching/learning process. The teachers use several techniques through dramatisation like story telling, play acting, mono acting, question – answer sessions, use of tableau, story boxes, activity based story telling, use of various types of dolls, masks, crowns, effigies, several low cost materials effectively, to make the child understand and concretize abstract concepts.
These techniques enable the teacher to make the child understand and concretize abstract concepts. Teachers are also enabled to strengthen their pupil’s ability of listening, speaking, questioning, answering, reasoning, describing, drawing, writing & analyzing.
These help children to strengthen their listening, speaking, questioning, answering, reasoning, describing, drawing, writing, analyzing, and other skills. This also helps children learn to adjust while working in groups.
The children also learn to use every day play materials effectively in the learning processes. They learn to prepare objects and shapes out of play materials and learn through them. The children learn easily to count, find the differences in weights of different objects, use of materials in daily life.
Through the use of technique of dumb acting (Miming), the children learn to identify objects, the use of chain questioning and acting out the sequences helps the child to describe or understand a situation / analyse a problem. Story telling through use of pictures in sequences help children in lower classes understand abstract concepts. Story telling is also an effective tool when used with musical plays.
The techniques used through dramatisation help reinforce the competencies learnt by the child in their respective lessons. One lakh LPS teachers have been trained under this program. DSERT has also brought out a teachers’ hand book which can be used as trainers’ module.
Nalikali –The Best practices of Karnataka
India has an exceptionally rich diversity of communities, ranging from tribes to technologist. India also has the most diverse plant and animal life on earth. To educate an illiterate population of such a country, whose rich oral traditions are many thousands of years old presents a considerable challenge. Centralized educational systems cut off the underprivileged both from their own culture and from a meaningful modern education. This is widely evident in the problems that stalk India’s rural schools: large dropout rates, unacceptable levels of failure at examinations and frequent teacher absenteeism. This is mainly because most of the schools have mono grade class rooms
Schools are strongest institutions in the child’s life. Schools play a crucial and a formative role in the spheres of cognitive, language, emotional, social and moral development of the children. Teachers who are the key masters of this institution have a major role in shaping the future of the individual children.
In mono grade /traditional classrooms, teachers are the sole leaders who lead the students from lesson to lesson and it is a teacher-directed process. There is no provision or mechanism for slow learners or for students who return after long absenteeism to continue their studies, which result into demoralization and dropouts. Though the mono grade supposed to have one teacher per class, in actual facts, most schools functioned with very few teachers and therefore in effect these were multilevel, multi grade schools. In most rural primary schools the passive and one-way communication and multi grade situation resulted into children not acquiring the competencies or the abilities to read, write or comprehend.
The impact of joyful learning on children can be possible only through individual care, child centered and activity based curriculum that can suit the multi grade /multi level situation. The academic curriculum is to be graded for individual level of learning. The curriculum has to be integrated with activities Can we make the child feel enjoy about the time spent in the school in this situation? This became the major concern and concept of Nalikali–Joyful learning, a methodology that fulfills the learning achievement of children emerged
Nalikali started in 1995, as a small UNICEF-assisted pilot project in H. D. Kote, Mysore District .Searching for ways to revitalize primary schools, a group of 15 primary school teachers and administrators went to Rishi Valley (Madanapalle, Chittoor district, Andhra Pradesh) to study the satellite schools where children in multi-grade classrooms were learning to read, write and unleash their creativity in a joyful and exciting environment.
Children in these rural schools were working on their own in small groups moving from one alphabet/ numbers to another, moving from simple to complex language and mathematics. Children enjoyed learning EVS through songs, stories by taking an interest in what was happening around them. The teachers in the schools were also moving from one group to another, assisting, supporting and encouraging children in the process of learning. Teachers were innovating as they moved along, guided by broad learning levels that were stipulated... Children in standard two could read simple words, do simple arithmetic and sing and dance with abandon. The sheer energy and creativity of children was an eye- opener.
The shortcomings of the system were discussed with the teachers by the group that witnessed the Rishi valley schools and removing the drawbacks required the willingness and acceptance of the teacher to move from the conventional method of teaching and replacing it with following modifications.
The conventional method of teaching the alphabet was replaced by reading simple words, learning the letters that are easy to write and thereby helped the child to move from simple to complex letters in Standard I.
These modifications renegotiated with the minimum level of learning requirement, a radical departure from the use of textbooks and gave broad guidelines to teachers for their willingness in creating cards
The core team from H.D.Kote used Rishi valley methodology as a resource base, but worked out their programme in an independent manner .They designed a new curriculum- Kannada version of self-learning materials for classes at primary level with the support of educational administrators and pedagogic inputs from experts which was entitled Nalikali. The curriculum was divided into small manageable learning units, arranged these learning units in a learning ladder. Activities and a teaching methodology for each learning unit were developed in the form of activity cards to facilitate readiness for learning, instruction, reinforcement and evaluation. These activity cards are with songs, games, outdoor activities, conversation, role play, puzzle and craft. They indicate the mastery of any particular skill or competency. An evaluation system which is non-threatening, continuous and comprehensive was build into the learning ladder. A more democratic classroom management system, which is not based on the child’s gender, caste, age or ability, but on the nature of activity taken up by the child, was evolved. A system for making the classroom attractive - display of children’s work, children’s blackboard, weather charts, health charts, and etc. was developed The success of this methodology made other districts also keen to implement this method. When Mysore district came under DPEP Phase II in 1998, the Government decided to upscale the H.D. Kote experiment to cover the district. The DPEP project launched in few districts has accepted joyful learning –Nalikali as the important dimension of the educational reform and the importance of encouraging and empowering teachers to initiate changes from within. This was further extended to 10 blocks under Janashala programme -which was an UN assisted project in 1999. In the 12 days training teachers prepared the entire learning package- cards and achievement ladder
A diagrammatic representation of how learning takes place in the Nali-kali system is as follows:
Preparatory activities are those, the teacher designs keeping in mind the overall view of the competency. The pre-learning activities are the starting point and relative to the competency about to be taught. This is followed by the actual learning activity moving on to the activities for practice and reinforcement .This moves on to evaluation.
The children in the classrooms are grouped into 5 groups in accordance with the level of competence and pace of learning - a group that needs total assistance from the teacher; partial assistance from the teacher; total assistance from peer group; partial assistance from peer group. Lastly the children working on their own, without any assistance.
Children move from easiest towards difficult gradually. They master the competency in one group and move on to another group to learn the next competency. Children learn at their own pace and moving from one competency to another is not dependent on the whole group’s learning. The groups are dynamic and the formation of group changes depending on the activity that the child is doing. The child is free to move at its natural pace of learning. The learning ladder on which the child climbs shows the progress of the child.
The new method demanded a lot more from the teacher - she has to transform herself from an authoritarian figure and purveyor of knowledge to a fun loving and creative facilitator of learning The teacher would need to be involved in a variety of activities, initiate children into their learning tasks, create groups for peer-supported and Participatory learning, evaluate students who have completed a certain stage in their learning, and help the slower ones to understand and complete their tasks. The teacher would need to ensure that every child is profitably engaged in the learning process
This method effectively eliminates formal system of roll calls, examinations promotions and ranking– all these now deemed unhealthy at least between the tender ages of 5 and 14.The curriculum is seen as a continuum from class I-IV - graded into learning tasks along a 4-year continuum. A child who remained absent from school for several days or weeks due to seasonal agricultural work or illness or temporary migration can re-enter the learning continuum at the level where she left off without having to go through the distress of catching up large chunks of portions missed out. This system has emerged from the belief that real and meaningful learning takes place through a dynamic interaction, not only between teacher and child, but also between child and child. The child learns to cooperate. Each child knows the level where it stands as she picks the card on her own from the bag and marks her level of achievement in the ladder. The children learn to be self reliant and less dependant on the teacher. The teacher will not feel burdened to handle so many children when she master the system and she will at freedom to change the learning content of the cards to suit the local specific needs. A learning ladder - displayed prominently in the classroom - is a ready reference point for children, teachers and also inspectors and other visitors. Children easily point out their level in language and mathematics. The interaction with the community has increased - partly because of the EVS programme where the teacher accompanies the children to the village to gather information about their environment or look at plants and trees. Children also talk about the school, sing songs and share the excitement with parents and siblings. This, teachers admit, has definitely led to better rapport with parents and enhanced their respect in the community
Any initiative to succeed will require repeated opportunities for small actions that individuals could design, initiate and implement themselves. The monthly meetings are forums for participants to articulate their goals, experiment with new projects and initiatives. They learn from their successes and mistakes and talk with each other candidly and openly about their results. This helps in building commitment through participation and action.
The administrators evaluate the methodology in 2002 before up scaling it to all Government schools of Karnataka. The evaluation report given by Dr. Lalithamma, HOD in Department of studies in education, University of Mysore suggested the following for the improvement in the Nalikali approach.
The two major things that were taken care while revising the curriculum -Children need more reading material and writing practice. The introduction of child portfolio, worksheets and readers for Standard one and two modified the learning ladder of nalikali methodology. These changes are reflected in the ladder and incorporated into the ladder and not used as a standalone. The exercise in developing the reading material entailed both the revision of ladder and the introduction of simple graded readers in the curriculum. Clubbing of I and II standard ladder in language was made. The maximum teacher partnership and ownership in the material was ensured, as the teachers who have worked on the material for more than three years know how to improve the material.
A scientific analysis before the development of readers was planned and the teachers were made to visit the Govt. schools in-groups and list out the sentences that children use while conversing casually with their friends and classmates. The teachers visited the schools and collected a repository of children’s active vocabulary to know more about their active language, the words the children use in every day conversation, figures of speech that are common and average sentence length that children are comfortable with. The teachers recorded the words and analyzed the words the children use in common and prepared a word list and compared it with the words used in the Nalikali methodology. The same exercise the teachers repeated in their blocks. They recorded and analyzed the spontaneous speech of children in various situations like within the classroom, in the playground while narrating stories or converse with their friends and compared it with the Nalikali words. The teachers were asked to list out 300 words for consonant and vowel patterns from the sentences collected by them. The commonly used words were listed out and this was circulated to all the blocks for writing stories. Block level workshops were conducted in all 10 blocks for training the teachers in writing stories and nearly 1200 stories were created by the teachers and sent to Akshara foundation-An NGO which was entrusted with the task of preparation of readers by UNICEF. Akshara sifted through the story ideas and translated them into small readers that introduced known words and letters using the active vocabulary of the child. Thus 50 readers were created for class I. This was tested in the blocks by Akshara foundation in their field visits. A good response and feedback received about the introduction of graded readers at the lower primary level.
The teachers also reviewed the language ladder of class I based on their analysis. They developed a fresh language ladder with familiar consonant and vowels being introduced much earlier in the ladder. After this ladder outline was completed, the designing of new cards, worksheets and exercise sheets was thrown open to the teachers. The teachers at the blocks undertook this exercise based on their own ideas. The creation of activity cards for each milestone was done at the block level and the usage of worksheets; child portfolio and readers were specified in the ladder.
This exercise was repeated while redoing the language learning ladder of Class II. .In mathematics, not much change was made except the introduction of worksheets both at class I and II. The training of Nalikali- a joyful learning makes the teacher to undergo painful training in writing down the notes and preparing the cards for 12 days, hence teacher’s manual to reduce the burden of trainees during training was introduced. This manual contained information about the activities, different logos and the methods to be adopted to complete the activities, the difference between the HD Kote model and revised Nalikali ladder, use of graded readers and child portfolio .The programme of work for an academic year was framed and included in the manual, keeping in mind the performance of an average child.
The introduction of worksheets which was later on converted into workbooks and readers at Class I and II was analyzed by committee consisted of administrators and field level functionaries in 2005. A decision was taken to limit nalikali up to class II and sustain nalikali in 17 blocks -10 Janashala and 7 Mysore blocks and up scaling to entire state to be made based on the success of programme in these 17 blocks.
As this methodology was more appropriate in multi grade situation in a school, this methodology was introduced in 7009 schools of the remaining 185 Blocks of Karnataka where the number of children is less than 30 at lower primary level under Sarva Shikha Abbyan.in the year 2008-09. In 2009-10, nalikali was introduced in all govt. Kannada medium schools of Karnataka at class I & II.
Nalikali materials in Urdu was also developed and this methodology was piloted in all Govt Urdu medium schools of 22 blocks covering the entire districts of Mandya, Bidar, Bijapur and two blocks –Siddlaghatta of chikkabellapura district and shorapur of yadgiri district.
Bahumukhi (Multi grade and Multi level teaching Program) Since 70% of our elementary schools have multi grade teaching, it is imperative that our teachers are trained in multi grade and multi level teaching techniques. DSERT, in collaboration with several organisations – DPEP, APF and BRC/CRC/DIET Bangalore Urban - has developed a module on multi grade and multi level teaching called “Bahumukhi”.
During 2004 – 2005, all the trainers and at least one teacher from every elementary school in the state were trained in this module. This module helps the teachers to incorporate important aspects of multi grade and multi level teaching techniques –
· Nali – Kali,
· Developing right attitude among teachers
· Class room management,
· Effective time management,
· Effective plan and implementation of instructional plan
· Activity based teaching methodology,
· Utilising available TLM and community resources
· Effective use of co curricular activities
· Effective use of Keli – Kali radio lessons
· Comprehensive evaluation in the class room transaction.
The module contains examples as to how to handle class rooms in various Multi Grade situations. Several teachers expressed that the Multi grade situations in our primary schools is pretty dynamic in the sense that a school with 3 teachers gets reduced to 2 teachers when a teacher goes on leave or leaves the school on some official work.
In 2005 – 06 a core group was formed to prepare teachers’ hand books for different Multi Grade situations. All the teachers will be trained in 2006 – 07 in the use of these hand books.
English Language Teacher Training Program
With a view to train at least one teacher in every primary school in the state in English language teaching, the DSERT took up a massive teacher training program in collaboration with Regional Institute of English (RIE), Bangalore. The program is given in a ten day package. The training module and the language kit was developed by the RIE and given to each teacher under going training. The Master Resource persons have also been trained by the RIE. The primary teachers were trained at the BRCs through the DIETs. The program covered 48,000 primary teachers.
In 2005 – 06 a second teacher in a higher primary school has also been trained in this program.
Training for Newly recruited teachers:
S S A envisages a 30 day training program for the newly recruited primary teachers. DSERT has prepared a 15 day training module “Prerana” for newly recruited teachers. All the newly recruited teachers (8604) recruited during 2003 – 04 were trained in this module. This training has also been given to teachers recruited during 2002 – 03.
Prerana (Foundation Course for newly recruited teachers) Induction training to newly recruited elementary teachers has also been taken up in a big way. A module “PRERANA” for a 2 weeks training program in content, pedagogy, departmental programs, issues in primary education, etc., has been prepared in collaboration with DIET, Mysore and newly recruited teachers are being trained during summer / mid term vacations. All the newly recruited primary teachers from 2003 – 04 are trained under this program. This program is being conducted at the BRC level through the DIETs.
School Development Plan:
School Development plan is an effective tool to improve school education in both physical and academic terms. First a module for a High school Development plan was prepared which was later modified to include primary schools also.
School Development plan aims –
· To empower institutions to develop plans reflecting the schools’ vision for the next five years, with clear priorities,
· To train heads of schools, teachers and communities to assess the needs and prioritize them,
· To plan for mobilizing and utilizing the available resources effectively and bring about the desired changes in the institutions.
· To empower the schools to exhibit autonomy and accountability by ensuring community participation,
S D P is being implemented in three phases from 2003 – 04. – The pilot phase, The expansion phase, and the Consolidation phase. Process of training is totally participatory and reviews the progress of participating schools in preparing the school development plans and their implementation.
DSERT has also trained the heads of institutions and SDMC members of high schools, which have been selected for assistance under the school development plan.
The training package under SSA also includes training of head teachers of primary schools in the school development plan.
DSERT has prepared a training module “ Spandana” and “ Sankalpa” for training SDMC members for two days. During 2003 – 04, 45,000 SDMC members have been trained. Several NGOs are also involved in the training program of SDMC members.
Spandana is a training module which was prepared with an intention to train master resource persons who in turn train School Development and Monitoring Committee (S D M C) members. Through the help of another training module called Sankalpa.
The objectives of this training is to enable the
· SDMC members to take active participation in the improvement of school education in the local situation
· To bring an awareness regarding their role and responsibilities towards the school
· On the basis of the experience gained and shared by the target group, this module is being refined with periodical updating in the year 2003-04. This module was again updated in 2005 – 06.
· SDMC members are provided with the information of the programs and policies of the department to enable to implement them in their schools effectively.
STRATEGIES ADAPTED IN KARNATAKA FOR MULTI GRADE AND MULTI LEVEL TEACHING IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS
The Multigrade(MG) and Multi level(ML) teaching and learning environments exist in India, right from the days of the Gurukul system, where a Guru was teaching a number of pupils of different age groups in different disciplines simultaneously. Even in the present modern system of education, Multigrade and multi level situations in elementary classrooms have become an unavoidable reality.
China has 4.20 lakhs MG schools, India is second to China in the number of MG schools. Several advanced countries like Switzerland, Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, Japan, Sri Lanka have sizeable percentages of MG schools. Many of these countries follow local specific approaches in MG schools, even though the curriculum broadly conforms to the national curriculum.
In India, the Universalisation of Elementary Education has added more and more dimensions to this important issue. It is necessary to recognize that multi grade teaching is an inevitable and important phenomenon which is bound to continue to exist in the educational scenario in this country as we continue to improve access and cover smaller and smaller habitations. In Karnataka State, among Government schools, about 95% of Lower Primary Schools have Multigrade teaching in classes I to V. Higher Primary Schools have Multigrade teaching in 84% of schools in classes I to VI and in 45% of schools in classes I to VII. (Eduvision document 2002). (Addition of VIII standard in some of the Government Higher primary schools in Karnataka has added one more dimension to the problem). This is more or less the field level reality in the rest of the country also with probably minor variations in percentages. Multigrade situations in classrooms, (which is largely a rural phenomenon), develop due to the following reasons also-
Karnataka identified this as a very important issue and has tried to devise appropriate strategies to equip and build capacities in its elementary teachers to handle Multigrade and multi level situations with greater confidence.
The Nali Kali (Joyful learning) program developed under DPEP in Karnataka is an important step in that direction. It provides some solutions in a limited way to certain problems faced in Multigrade situations. In this system the teachers have developed a series of cards (in each subject) which have replaced the text books. Nali Kali is ideally suited for handling children in Multigrade situations especially in the lower classes. Nali Kali enables children to learn at their own pace. A single activity can be designed to suit different classes of children and for different competencies in different subjects. The Nali Kali system is in practice in all elementary schools in I and II standards in 17 educational blocks in the state.
The concept of Nali kali and activity based teaching methodology was fully incorporated in the “Chaitanya” teacher training modules developed by DSERT later. The concept of MG and ML was discussed in this module.
In 2003 – 04, DSERT developed an exclusive training module for Multigrade teaching aptly named “ Bahumukhi”(as the teacher plays a really multi faceted role in the class room). It took almost one year to develop this module as the new strategies developed had to be field tested before concretizing the concepts in the module.
As strategies in managing MG situations, grouping of classes, competencies, use of student groups in learning, management through peers have been incorporated in a more scientific manner in this training module.
The objectives of the training module:
The teachers are able to –
(i) handle MG and ML situations more effectively and with confidence, through efficient classroom management,
(ii) develop the ability to prepare daily/monthly/annual plans for MG/ML situations
(iii) develop the ability to identify and teach similar competencies to children of two or more classes simultaneously.
(iv) develop better skills in use of available resources like classroom space, library books, learning materials, radio/video lessons, etc.,
(v) increase learning time of children in each class through better time management,
(vi) Understand effective use of co curricular activities in MG/ML situations.
(vii) Develop skills to develop competency based evaluation techniques.
The Development of the Concept of MG and ML
One teacher teaching more than one class and with in the space of a single class room is described as Multigrade teaching. The teacher has to teach both curricular and co curricular subjects to different age groups of children studying at different levels.
The teacher has to make several adjustments and compromises to handle such situations effectively and also ensure effective learning in the class room. The challenges that the teacher faces in such situations are –
a. All students should reach expected levels of learning.
b. All students are engaged in learning process simultaneously.
c. Personal attention is given to the learning of every child.
d. Activities and learning materials suitable to all children are used.
e. All lessons in the text book are covered with in the prescribed time as per program of work.
f. Even when teachers are given other duties, learning in the class room takes place with out hindrance.
g. The text book designed for teaching in single class situations are adapted for MG situations.
h. Preparing a time table to suit MG and ML situations.
i. All children undergo continuous comprehensive evaluation
j. The teacher maintains all prescribed records along with his regular work.
Even though the teacher faces these challenges, it becomes unavoidable for the teacher to teach in MG and ML situations. Hence the most important point is that the teacher is mentally prepared and accepts the reality of such situations.
All the principles of learning equally apply to MG situations. It is not necessary to formulate different principles for this purpose
a.Learning should be child centered.
b. Individual attention should be provided.
c. Learning should be through activities.
d. Learning should be participatory in nature.
e. Learning should take place in an environment free from fear,
f. Learning should be joyful,
g. All children should be able to acquire the desired competencies,
h. Evaluation should objectively test the learning of children
STRATEGY 1:Use of Text Books and Combining of
In this strategy, the following important points are taken in to consideration while combining similar competencies – class, subjects, competencies, work books and periods.
Since the present text books are prepared based on competencies, the first strategy is to use these text books in MG situations by combining similar competencies for two or more classes. Since all language text books contain same areas and competencies appear to be mutually connected, the following points are noticed when we try to combine language competencies –
a. Each competency goes on expanding from class to class. If we can take listening as one area, in I standard, we have popular songs and stories where as in IV standard we have simple dialogues of situations familiar to the child. It is very difficult to combine such competencies even though they appear to be mutually connected.
b. Some competencies are introduced for the first time in a class. For example in III standard the child identifies the central theme in a lesson or is able to sequentially identify events.
c. Even then it is possible for a teacher to combine competencies and teach different classes. For example in the area of listening, one competency may be taken as – Understanding of dialogues in known situations. The teacher can use the same strategy to make children learn this competency in classes I, II and III simultaneously with a certain amount of preparation.
In Mathematics, it is possible to combine competencies more methodically as curriculum is concentric in nature. A particular competency in a class is continuation of the same competency of the previous class. For example in Class I counting is from 1 to 19 and in Class II counting is from 20 to 99. Learning process is the same and hence the classes can be taught together. But there are limitations too. Division is taught for the first time in III standard. Hence it is difficult to combine this competency with any other competency of the previous class.
In Environment Science, a majority of the competencies are related to each other and also graded. Text book use is not like in a language lesson. Hence content can be combined and taught. Work books can be effectively used here. Certain subject areas like food, health, cleanliness, cooperation, discipline are not confined to one class and hence classes can be combined while teaching EVS.
But in any subject, it is not possible to combine competencies 100%. Since competencies are graded, they get separated at some level. Similarly, it is not possible to combine all competencies in all classes. Even after teaching competencies in combination, the teacher has to decide how much should be taught at what level and at what level classes have to be taught separately. It is also important to note that the teacher need not teach lessons as given serially in the text book. This requires adequate preparation (Annual Program of Work) on the part of the teacher from the begining of the year itself.
STRATEGY 2 Class Room Management:
Class room management is a very important strategy in MG and ML teaching. Which class has to be combined with which class to achieve the desired level of learning has to be decided by the teacher. Strength of a class is also an important factor in class room management.
In Karnataka, before 2007-08 , English is introduced from class 5. Science and Social Science are taught as separate subjects from class 5. The third language is introduced from class 6.
Hence in higher primary schools having MG situations, a minimum of 2 teachers are to teach the lower primary classes. The other teachers handle classes 6 and 7.There are advantages in combining classes serially:
1. By combining classes 1 and 2, children of class 1 can more quickly adjust to the formal school system.
2. A child backward in a particular class can learn with a backward/ forward child in the next class.
3. Group activities like songs, story telling, creative activities can be effectively performed if classes are combined serially.
4. Even though competencies are graded from class to class, several concepts in several competencies can be taught together effectively.
5. One activity performed in a class can be used as a supplementary activity in the next higher class.
6. Since children belong almost to the same age group, participation will be better in serially combined classes.
STRATEGY 3: Time Management:
Time management is critical to teaching in MG and ML situations. This will help to effectively do a particular work with in a given time frame. The teacher prepares the annual program of work in the begining of the calendar year. The subject to be taught, time available, number of classes to be taught by a teacher, number of teachers available for teaching – all are important factors in preparing the time table.
In Karnataka elementary schools, daily academic work is divided in to 8 periods of 40 minutes each. Taking in to consideration 5 periods taught on Saturdays, number of periods available per week (8x5 +5=45) works out to 45 periods. But it is difficult to prepare a time table in MG situations.
1. In a 40 minute period it is difficult to take up activities and complete them simultaneously in more than one class by the same teacher.
2. This has adverse impact on completion of syllabus as per annual program of work.
3. Even if activities can be completed, it is difficult to provide individual attention to every child and to ensure whether every child has completed the particular activity.
4. When the teacher takes up direct teaching, (as certain areas are not amenable to MG teaching), the children of other classes cannot be effectively engaged in other activities, there by reducing learning time in respect of each child.
5. The teachers are also subjected to psychological pressure and hurry to complete portions in time without bothering too much on quality of learning.
Hence effective time management is critical to effective learning in MG classes. Hence teachers combine 2 periods with a total duration of 80 minutes from Monday to Friday and on Saturday they take one period of 40 minutes and 2 periods of 80 minutes.
! The learning time for children in each class proportionately increases in a 80 minutes period.
! The teacher also gets sufficient time to complete the activities taken up.
! When in one class direct teaching is taken up, in other classes children can be engaged in practice exercise or evaluation activity,
! Individual attention time also increases. The teacher can also take up remedial measures where required.
! Competencies in certain co curricular areas can be taken up in all children together - Story telling, action songs, group singing, quiz programs, drawing, library activities, selected experiments in science, games, physical exercises, An example of a revised time table on the above example is –
Day 1. Period 2. Period 3. Period 4. Period
A. Monday Language Maths EVS Co curricular to Activities Friday
B. Monday Kannada Science/ Radio lesson/ to Friday English Maths Social Edusat lesson Hindi Science Remedial teaching Games
A. Applicable to Lower Primary Classes,
B. Applicable to higher primary classes,
C. Physical Training (P.T.)
Under the above arrangement, during language, Maths, EVS, periods, all classes will be having the same learning activity in that particular subject. In each subject, competencies are combined and taught as graded competencies. The teacher often takes up same preparatory activities for all classes as there are similarities in several competencies and activities in a particular subject.
Radio lessons/ Video lessons are integrated in to the academic time table. When one class has a radio/edusat video lesson, the children of other classes are engaged in group/individual activities for which the teachers prepare time tables and activities separately. The period for co curricular activities are also divided according to the nature of activities.
STRATEGY 4: Space Management:
In a majority of MG schools the number of class rooms available is equal to the number of teachers. In some of the schools, the number of class rooms will be more than/less than the number of teachers. If the number of teachers is less than the number of class rooms, then the teachers can use equal number of class rooms for direct teaching and the remaining rooms can be used for remedial teaching, display of TLM and library activities.
If the number of class rooms is less than the number of teachers two teachers have to share the same class room. In such a scenario, the teacher has to explore all available facilities including external environment like verandah, outside empty walls as black boards, shadow of trees, etc.,
In MG classes, classes can be combined depending upon the number of children. While combining classes, proper attention has to be given for providing sufficient space to each child for proper learning. When children are learning, there should be sufficient space for the teacher to move around and guide the children.
The teacher should also give proper attention to the organization and place for use of TLM in MG situations effectively. The material prepared by children are displayed in the class room suitably and replaced as and when new TLM is developed.
In each class room the lower portions of the class room walls can be converted as black boards for use by children.
STRATEGY 5: Lesson Plan:
In MG situations the teacher has to adequately prepare herself through a proper lesson plan. He need not prepare lesson plans class wise and subject wise. It is sufficient to prepare lesson plans subject wise according to units.
In Karnataka since teaching learning process is activity based, the Teacher prepares one lesson plan for each unit and merely indicates the dates on which particular activities are taken up. When classes are combined for teaching a particular competency, the teacher merely indicates the activity that he is going to take up.
Even when there are no linkages between competencies, (eg. addition and division) the teacher can still prepare similar preparatory activities and can be indicated in the lesson plan.
STRATEGY 6: Class room management:
Even though the class room management depends on the number of class rooms available and number of teachers available, through planned class room management, we can significantly increase the learning time of children. Even in one teacher one class situation the learning speed of children varies significantly. This results in formation of different groups within a class room.
Some of the important points to be considered in class room management are:
a) Number of classes/groups which are subject to direct teaching.
b) Lessons/competencies which are combined in MG situations,
c) Different levels of activities,
d) Person responsible for management,
e) Space management,
f) Time management,
g) Teachers’ capacity
h) Number of children in each group,
Some of the strategies in class room management are –
a) The TLM should be prepared and kept ready depending upon the number of children,
b) The instructions to be given to the children are planned by the teacher in advance,
c) The teacher should decide whether learning should take place individually, in groups, or collectively,
d) In each group there should be at least one child who is good in learning,
e) If one class is under going direct teaching, the teacher should manage other classes in such a way that children of each class are completely engaged in group activities,
f) After evaluation, children who have not learnt should be subjected to remedial teaching,
g) Depending on the level of learning of each child, the teacher should review the formation of groups and activities to be given every day,
h) If at any given level the children have not acquired the desired competencies, the activities have to be repeated or the teacher has to design new activities to teach the same competencies,
i) If after evaluation, the children have reached the desired levels, the same children can be included in direct teaching according to requirements,
STRATEGY 7: Use of Library:
Each school has a number of books which can be used as supplementary reading material in addition to text books. Children get attracted to colour and pictures in the books. Use of library books is a major strategy in handling MG situations. The children also acquire reading habit, additional knowledge, thinking ability, and finally certain amount of entertainment too. The children also are able to acquire certain competencies through the habit of reading –
a) Read simple sentences,
b) Read easily and without difficulty,
c) Ability to copy,
d) Identify and make use of simple rhymes,
e) Read and understand simple poems, songs and stories,
f) Read, understand and tell in own sentences,
Books can be displayed in such a way that the children can easily pick up these books. Books can also be classified in to various categories by the teacher by subjects, by difficulty levels and for ease of handling.
These books can also be used for various learning activities – preparatory activities, learning, exercise and evaluation. One period per week can also be used as library period.
STRATEGY 8: Use of TLM:
Teaching Learning Materials (TLM) play a major role in clarifying concepts learnt by children. It is possible for teachers to prepare attractive and at the same time low cost and no cost TLM. In order to increase the effectiveness, the TLM can also be prepared with the help of children.
The fundamental objective in use of TLM is to make learning more effective. An effective and talented teacher can use TLM effectively.
a) The TLM should lend itself for use in teaching more than one competency,
b) It should lend itself for teaching both MG and ML situations,
c) Both teachers and children can use them with ease,
d) It should last longer even when made of low cost,
e) It should lend itself for use in continuous and comprehensive evaluation ,
f) It should be made to scale,
g) It can easily be remade when required.
h) The number of TLM used should depend on the number of children,
Use of news paper:
A news paper lends itself for use in all subjects and in many situations:
In language -
a) Class I children can be asked to identify alphabets, words,
b) Class II children can be asked to identify complex alphabets (gunitakshar) and words, copy words and sentences,
c) Class III children can be asked to read small stories, news items,
d) Class IV children may be asked to write dictation using selected words and sentences from the news paper.
In Maths -
a) Class I children can be asked to identify numbers,
b) Class II children can be asked to identify dates, weeks, numbers,
c) Class III children can be asked to identify units of measurement,
d) Class IV children can use the sheet on share market for doing simple problems, collect the prices of gold, silver and other commodities and understand daily variations in prices of commodities.
In EVS -
a) Class I children can be asked to identify animals, plants, birds, copy pictures, etc,
b) Class II children can be asked to copy pictures,
c) Class III children can read and understand local news, weather reports, news about local places,
d) Class IV children can read and understand the news about the state and the country, exports and imports, capitals of states and countries, read and understand maps, etc,
Use of outside Resources:
There are various ways of securing outside support for handling MG situations. This will also help reduce burden and pressure on teachers in such schools.
a) The teacher can identify talented persons in every neighbourhood of the school more so in villages - retired teachers, persons interested in education, unemployed and educated youth, old students of the school, sports persons, artists, local officials, artisans, etc., Every village has a number of talented folk artists, story tellers, members of Yuvak/Yuvathi mandals,
b) The teachers can make a list of such persons and use them in conducting various activities with in the school.
c) The teachers can also invite officials like doctors, nurses, police officials, panchayat secretaries, agricultural extension officers, and arrange interactive sessions with them so that the children also acquire more knowledge about these officers and learn to appreciate their work,
d) The teachers can also conduct Ma – beti melas, parents’ meetings, school festivals, school exhibitions, etc, with outside support.
e) The teachers can also use picnics, educational excursions to near by places of historical/educational interest. Public support can also be used to arrange these events.
Some of these strategies have been incorporated in the teacher training module “Bahumukhi” and every teacher of elementary school was trained in the module.
This was only the beginning. Later on it was found that enunciating the principles and strategies for Multi Grade teaching was not just sufficient.
The teachers also have to develop individual strategies and list competencies which lend themselves to MG teaching.
The teachers required help in transacting the same content in different MG situations. In 2005 – 06, DSERT embarked on a massive effort to convert the content in all the subjects in all the primary classes by preparing teachers’ hand books to help teachers handling different MG situations. The work continues…
The following programs are also being conducted by DSERT under SSA:
1. Keli Kali radio class room program being broadcast from 10 stations of ALL INDIA RADIO, for the students of I to VIII standards covering 55,000 primary schools. Chinnara Chukki (I to III standards) and Chukki Chinna (IV and V standards) is beamed in collaboration with EDC.
2. Computer Education Project in selected 190 Higher Primary Schools The program is being implemented in collaboration with AZIM PREMJI FOUNDATION.
3. Edusat program which has been launched in 2004 - 05.
The Edusat program for the Primary schools in Karnataka State has been launched in year 2004 & 2005 in collaboration with I S R O and Government of Karnataka.
EDUSAT Project is operational in 885 elementary schools of the backward Chamarajanagar, 885 elementary schools in Gulbarga, 406 elementary Schools in Bangalore Rural & 427 elementary schools in Ramanagar which covers 3, 90,000 children, 13000 teachers and 2,000 educational functionaries.
The following materials have been provided by ISRO to elementary schools to run the EDUSAT project:
Receive Only Terminal (ROT): a solar power pack: a 29 colour T V with lockable TV box: UPS and the batteries are installed in these schools. The solar power panel has helped to overcome power problem in rural areas
The Department of State Educational Research & Training (DSERT) identified the hard spots in each subject in classes III to VIII with the help of class room teachers and subject experts. Scripts prepared were given to professional film makers for making video lessons. 458 video films have been prepared under the supervision of an expert committee.
Two video lessons are telecast everyday- the first lesson from 2.00 PM to 2.30 PM and the second lesson from 3.30 PM to 4.00 PM. The telecast of the lesson in the afternoon has helped maintain full attendance in schools.
The Edusat program is being regularly monitored by a High Power Committee headed by the Additional Chief Secretary.
The concurrent evaluation of the program has been entrusted to Regional Institute of Education, Mysore (A unit of SCERT).
DSERT has established a malty purpose studio in its premises. A major Portion of the equipment for the studio has been donated by Education Development Centre Washington. This studio is used for live telecasts.
The Hub and telecast facility is also located at DSERT. The facility is also shared by the Visvewaraya Technological University which is connected to 100 Engineering colleges in the state through the Edusat facility.
In the primary education project, every school is given a teachers hand book. It contains the telecasting schedule which helps the teacher to integrate the video lesson in class room teaching.
The hand book contains for every video lesson:-
229 ROTs have been provided by SSA to all the offices of Deputy Directors of Public Instruction, District Institutes of Education (DIETs) and Block Resource Centers (BRCs) in Karnataka. This will help in taking up teacher training programs through teleconferencing. Teleconferencing has been started from DSERT studio from FEB-06. The training modules for the in service training for teleconferencing have been provided by DSERT.
Karnataka has pioneered the distance education concept in both primary and teacher’s education sectors in the country through the Edusat project.
The program aims to:
The program aims at quality improvement in teaching in primary schools, through empowerment of our teachers to use popular media in academic work and enable them to teach using innovative teaching methods using music, use of sound effects and dramatization of lessons to sustain the interest of the child in learning.
In 2000 – 2001, the program started on a pilot basis for III standard children and was broadcast from Dharwad and Gulbarga stations of All India Radio. In the second phase, the program was introduced in 11 DPEP districts for III and IV standard children.
In the III phase, in 2002 – 03, the program was introduced for standards III, IV and V and was broadcast from 10 stations of All India Radio, during 11.30 AM to 12.30 PM covering nearly 50,000 primary schools and 70, 00,000 children in 32 educational districts of the state.
Education Development centre has produced 288(Chinnara Chukki and Chukki Chinna lessons by EDC) 134 (Keli Kali lessons for) Radio Programmes for grades 1 – V during current academic year. 50 programmes are being produced in English for class I and II. During 2009-10 20 programs produced in English for class 1 to 3 funded by SSA. All the 3 series are now broad cast from all 13 stations of All India Radio and used in all the primary schools.
The popularity of these radio lessons can be gauged from the fact that after every radio lesson about 13,000 post cards are received from the students, parents and the public. Periodic audio video conferencing has also been held to find out the impact of the program.
The program has been extended to cover VI and VII standard children in 2005 – 06 and VIII standard from 2006 – 07.
The teachers hand books published by DSERT contains the following details to enable the teacher to use the lessons effectively in his teaching.
21st June to 11th February
Gulbarga, Dharwad, Bhadravati, Mangalore, Hassan, Bangalore, Madikeri, Mysore, Karwar, Hospet, Bijapura. Hospet, Chitradurga
Collaborative Institutions: SSA, DSERT, AIR, EDC.