How to Get Our Children to Learn
While designing any syllabus
care has to be taken that
♦ Children are not over fed information – sometimes a lot of information is not useful to them yet it is in syllabus because educators believe it should be taught. I have always advocated leaving history to higher class and to be optional. Similarly, geography can either be minimised or left for later when a student would choose to know more about the subject.
♦ Mathematics and Science too can be minimised so that the child learns only what is necessary.
Now how do we ensure this happens?
We have to overcome the problem of boredom. We have to keep them interested. We usually force them to learn but they will remember better when they are excited about what they are learning.
Malcolm Gladwell in his book The Tipping Point talks about the science and methodology behind the making of a television programme called Sesame Street. He details how by trial and error the channel came up with a formula to keep the children glued to the TV and at the same time learn something. They involved various kinds of scientists and entertainers to come up with a winning formula. Later another team at a rival channel – Nickelodeon, came up with a programme called Blues Clues which beat Sesame Street to the TRPs. Apparently Blues Clues was simpler to understand than Sesame Street. However this is not to say that the Blues Clues guys were smarter. They had Sesame Street as a reference point and they went a step ahead.