Dear Teachers and Parents,
Please do not get frustrated with what the title of this short writing reads. I have a few burning questions waiting for your timely answers. To know what the questions are, please do not give up this article in the middle of the lines.
First, let me start with my own story.
I am a curious learner. I always get curious about everything and have a lot of questions in my head. But I am an average student in my class. I was good at theory but used to get less in the practical examination even though I used to do my best.
I had many other questions in my head, but the main one was ‘Why?’ Why do I get minor marks in my practical examination?
It was a question nobody could answer except me because I know myself better than anyone else. I didn’t get my answer! A few days passed but still, there was no answer. The question was lingering there unresponsive and after some days, I got the news of the coronavirus.
I thought it was just an ordinary virus. But, NO!
Because of the virus, every school and other public place got closed. Everything started running virtually, from shopping to learning classes. Our school also started classes virtually. I got weaker because I was not serious. So my academic results got worse and worse and worse. My parents and I became distraught.
Soon, one of my major examinations was starting. There were practical exams for every subject. In the English test, there was a speaking session where everybody had to show their speaking proficiency.
It was compulsory. I took the test. I got A+. Everyone appreciated my performance, saying that my public speaking was good. I had the ability to speak but was not yet explored how it could come over the ground.
My academic progress reports began to show better and best afterwards. Now I realized why I used to get less in practical examination than in the theoretical. It was because of my shy nature and introverted personality. I could never earn the confidence to speak in front of people who stare at me in person. As soon as I got myself in my comfort zone, I started thriving with my talents and strengths, which otherwise were understood there were none in me. So, pandemic, virus, lockdown and everything virtually turned to be an opportunity for me.
Coronavirus and lockdown came as causing factors to look at my learning personality in alternative ways, which truly brought success for me. So, the question is, how do you teach and evaluate who matter a lot to identify one’s talents and strengths. Look at me today. I have developed a lot of confidence now that I started to see my life’s worth: my efforts and hard work are significantly rewarding me now.
My parents are happy and I am satisfied with my progress report and academic success. The coronavirus turned out to be the ‘key’ to open the door to my success and happiness.
Teachers and parents, please think seriously about the answers to a few questions about your kids, pupils, and the education system’s practice as a whole in time.
Are your kids’ talents and strengths best fitting the ways we teach them and evaluate them? Are your kids in the hands of the right persons?
Are your kids best understood regarding their hidden talents and the underlying qualities waiting to sprout through the proper channels?
Are your kids respectfully treated and listened to for the due potentials they deserve that should come inside out with your help and encouragement?
Are your kids enjoying the best approach to be taught and assessed that might uniquely or commonly work for them?
Is the air provided to the kids are the right air for them to breathe and thrive? Aren’t you too early to conclude that your students or children are born to be dumb?
Look at me again. If the coronavirus had not come and my learning had not gone online, who knows if I would not be proved as a girl ‘born to be unsuccessful’?
Teach us the way we can thrive, not the way we only fail.
Parents and teachers, thank you for reading my short piece here.
Samriddhi Bhandari is a seventh grader from Kathmandu, Nepal.