Saturday, October 26, 2013

Unique learning experience for Coimbatore Corporation special school students

The students of the Corporation school for special children here are all set to take a major leap forward with the adoption of a new learning methodology in which information technology will play a major part and reverse the traditional roles of students and teachers.

With the establishment of a ‘tab lab’ at the Corporation School for the Deaf at R.S. Puram here, students will now be able to prepare ahead of their classes by viewing the subject in tablets, which will be issued to all the students and teachers.

This initiative will be launched next week by the Corporation.

The tablets will have video files of the school teachers explaining the subject curriculum in sign language. After going through these files, the students will be asked to explain some of the lessons during the class, American India Foundation Director (Digital Equaliser programme) J. Sundarakrishnan told The Hindu on Thursday over phone from New Delhi.

The video files will be prepared by the AIF personnel who will shoot and edit them. Each video file will have a duration of three to five minutes. This new methodology was developed by AIF and Carveniche Technologies to focus on outcome-based approaches, he said.

Teachers will be training in technology pedagogy (science of teaching) and learn how to prepare for their classes using the tablets. They will divide the class hours and allocate time for showing videos, solving problems and students interaction.

Mr. Sundarakrishnan said that the ‘flipped classrooms’ will help teachers focus on weaker students focus. The Foundation, which was implementing educational projects in several States, was introducing this concept of ‘flipped classroom’ first at Coimbatore. Following this, it will be introduced at a Government school in Bangalore, he added.

S. Tamil Selvi, Headmistress of the R.S. Puram School, said that students can view the video files any number of times till they comprehend the lesson completely. Visual representations will also make it easier for the students to learn.

The teachers were also conducting research online on how to prepare these files, she added.

The project was part of the ‘Digital Equaliser’ Programme for which the civic body had inked a three-year MoU (2012-15) with the AIF. It covers all the 10 high schools, 16 higher secondary schools, and one special school of Coimbatore Corporation, which had provided 464 computers for the project.

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