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New Age Schools
New age school emphasizes an experience-based education, where each student’s imagination and curiosity propels the development of more advanced communication, creative problem-solving, critical thinking, and collaboration skills. In other words, students open their minds and sharpen their thinking by getting their hands dirty. The schools are less interested in testing and more interested in making sure students have the life skills they need once they leave the classroom.
New Age Schools prepare the students with survival skills required for 21st century life, work, and citizenship like critical thinking and problem solving, collaboration and leadership, agility and adaptability, initiative and entrepreneurialism, effective oral and written communication, accessing and analyzing information and curiosity and imagination. They emphasis the importance of improvement over intelligence, development of social skills, understanding and action as the goals of learning as opposed to rote knowledge, collaborative and cooperative learning projects, education for social responsibility and democracy, highly personalized education accounting for each individual’s personal goals, integration of community service and service learning projects into the daily curriculum, selection of subject content by looking forward to ask what skills will be needed in future society, de-emphasis on textbooks in favor of varied learning resources, emphasis on lifelong learning and social skills and assessment by evaluation of child’s projects and productions. It follows a process driven curriculum with Process skills we need to add to new age curriculum are Communication skills, Technical reading and writing, Technical reasoning skills, Problem solving and critical thinking, Information literacy, Technology as a tool, New personal skills, New mindset skills like must teach students to live like quarterbacks developing their intuition, Failing is good, valuing stupid, crazy, off the wall ideas and fostering creative thinking.The new age schools should equip students for success in the brave new world of the 21st century.
In a new age school the focus is on the student’s learning. The student is considered to be an autonomous individual and is allowed to make her or his own efforts towards learning. The teacher is there to help the student in this process. This school emphasized on children’s autonomy in the learning process and activities as the basis for learning. The teacher recognized that each child learns differently and at a different pace. The school allowed for these differences to encourage each student to achieve their full potential. As each child is different when it comes to attention span, retaining capacity, the child’s prior knowledge of a particular concept, the aspects that are taken into consideration in the new-age classroom are manifold.
New age schools use accelerated advance technologies like cloud and smart technologies which are included into digital classrooms which fascinates everyone and gives an experimental edge to students to respond in a better way. So new age schools are equipped with appropriately designed infrastructure that supports the main cause of teaching and learning in amicable settings.
To cater to these evolving needs of the new-age learner, schools will have to adopt path-breaking ways of teaching by leveraging the latest technology. Highly sophisticated multimedia equipment, virtual reality apps, 3D technology, digital classrooms, design labs, and maker spaces are a few requirements that will be deemed necessary for a smart school.
Today there are a variety of ICT solutions available to make the teaching-learning process fun and dynamic Technology labs, Robotic and Design, using VR to view 3D world, AI for monitoring of students at individual and class level, School/Class monitoring, faculty/student monitoring, Role based access, classroom management system etc. Adapted technology has enabled teachers to explain concepts and ideas more effectively. 24/7 teacher content system, Digital library framework, virtual campus with ERP and eLearning resources, Auto generation and evaluation of assessments and Performance and progress.
Traditional Schools follow a teaching environment where the teacher is the only person or instructor who transfers knowledge to the students. The students acquire this knowledge in an unquestioning manner through listening and observation.Traditional teaching is concerned with the teacher being the controller of the learning environment. Power and responsibility are held by the teacher and they play the role of instructor and decision maker. Most classes involve rote learning, where students depend on memorization without having a complete understanding of the subject. Just by passing the tests, consisting of descriptions, matching and other forms of indicators are all that matter to complete the curriculum.
But the real change can happen in classroom only if teachers use refreshingly new methods of conveying concepts which create curiosity in the child’s mind hence incorporating Inquiry based learning approach. A massive retooling of educations or trainers is needed for a new age school. When schools do not apply these proper methods and teachers are not well-equipped with essential skills and training then it is meaningless to call them as new age schools.
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