Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Importance of career counselling in schools

The results of almost all the examinations whether school based or competitives  have been declared and the children and the parents are in the queues trying to get them admitted in the college or the school of their choice.Some students might have done very well and will get the admission as they desire but for some it may not be the case and they might not even get the admission in the college or the school of their choice with the subject combination they wish to take.It is often heard from the parents and the students that this is the subject of my interest though the grade/marks say a different story. It is true that at times the grades or the marks may not reflect the correct picture but they give some idea about the child`s aptitude. When the children are asked what makes them to believe that they have interest in a particular subject, in most of the cases there is no proper answer for that.When they are asked whether or not they got aptitude test done again maximum of them reply in a negative. The parents and children in smaller cities and towns are not really much aware of such tests and that puts them in such situation because whatever they decide it is based on the information they receive from friends and relatives.The problem with most of the people is that they themselves are not very sure of what they are good at. If they find somebody talking good about science and maths they get interested in that and if at some other time they listen somebody talking good about political science or commerce they get impressed by that also and hence this impression makes them feel that the child is interested in this or that subject. In the last many years of my  being involved with the education of the children and being a witness to the same story every year of the subject choice of the students in class XI, I have observed that the parents and the children who never showed any interest towards any particular subject or subjects, all of a sudden realise the child`s area of interest. The parents who never had any time to come to meet the teachers during the year, suddenly have a lot of time, at the time of admission to class XI. And interestingly in most of the cases, after the admission has been granted,they seldom get time to follow up whether their child is doing well in the so called subjects of his/her interest or he/ she is facing some problem in coping-up with the subjects wrongly chosen or forced upon him/her.
This problem is not of one school or one parent or one child rather many of us are affected by this.The reason for this is that in our country we  still do not give much importance  to the aptitude of the children rather follow the traditional path. We are, by nature the follower than being adventurous and be confident of exploring new fields. We are very protective by nature and avoid taking risk which makes the children develop the same nature and opt for the subjects he / she is impressed by and not necessarily interested in.In most of the cases this is the impression which makes the children believe as if it is their interest. Take the example of a TV advertisement in which the child wants to do lot many things depending upon the impact on his/her mind, for example when he watches Sachin Tendulkar,he wants to become a cricketer,when sees somebody flying an aeroplane he wants to become a pilot and likewise.  In this confusing state of mind, the counsellors can play a very important role in identifying the area of interest of the child and help the child and the parents both to overcome their dilemma.They are the ones who can test the child`s aptitude and advise the parents and the child about the field that child will be able to do better in. The example of China will be appropriate where the aptitude and the interest of the children is identified when they are  young and then they are trained and guided as per their aptitude. The result is that the Chinese are doing so well in almost all fields. No country can become great just by the efforts of few of its citizens but when the potential of all is exploited upto the optimum.Our children have the potential to do the same rather better if they are provided opportunities as per their aptitude and real interest.We should not force our wish on our children rather allow them to do well as per their aptitude.If done so the children will enjoy their life otherwise, neither will they be satisfied nor the others around them will be happy. 

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Are we becoming selfish?

You come across many news reports in which the feeling is that we are losing the sensitivity towards other people and becoming more selfish.Take the case of a lady suffering in the neighbourhood and the family next door does not have any idea about that,leave aside the help to be provided to the family. This is more so in so called developed cities called as metros. The development for the benefit of the people is very important but at the same time the emotions and the sensitivity towards our fellow beings should not be diluted which has unfortunately happened in the last fifteen- twenty years. This has not done good to anybody but all suffer because you need the supportive hand of the other people at one or the other time. The people have become so much focused or involved in their own well being that others do not have in place in their life. Why to talk of others, even the nearest relations are being forgotten and visiting people in grief is more of a formality than real moral support to them.Take the case of two sisters who remained confined to their rooms for almost six months or more and their brother did not bother about them at all.
There may be many examples in the mind of many of you but the recent one in which a national player was thrown out of a running train and unfortunately no passenger came forward to help her, was heart rendering and now she is struggling to survive in this world. The government agencies would have visited her in the hospital and announced some compensation due to the media pressure but today nobody remembers her including the active and alert media of the country.It has been observed many times that after an accident on the road the angry people will block the road but there will be very few who would really be extending help to the injured person. During the so called strikes, the agitators will forcibly shut down the shops and other establishments including the plying of the buseswithout even comprehending the repercussions,like many people have lost their lives because they could not be taken to the hospital in time. The ones  who loose their near and dear ones cry their hearts out but others do not have any regrets about the sin they had committed.
If the society has to live peacefully then the sentiments should be given space to be expressed not only in the newspapers and the books but in the day to day life also.We must learn to value others existence and importance as well. Nobody will be able to survive alone on this planet because as a human being you need to share your joys and sorrows with people. We are heading towards being alone and if it is not stopped a day will come when we shall go at a distance from each other that will make life meaningless.
I shall end this by sharing the theme of one of the functions in a school.The theme was"Shoonya se Shoonya tak," in which it was shown that the man was born alone and then had the family, society and now again he is heading towards being alone in the race of achieving infinity.The hero in the play goes to moon and was very happy in the company of the robots. He worked day and night and one day when he discovered some thing which he wanted, there was nobody to share his happiness because the robots were not programmed to share the emotions. If we lose the emotions,sentiments and the sensitivity, then we are no less than those robots and as mentioned earlier, robots do not share the emotions and the sentiments.Thus human beings need a selfless society for a friendly and peaceful existence.

What are our children exposed to?

What has been happening in the last few years is not really in the interest of the country or its people. The incidents of the last few months have put this country in a situation which does not convey positive aspects or give a bright picture to the citizens of the country, particularly the children. On one side many attempts are being made to introduce reforms in the education system and on the other hand the actions and the behavior of the responsible people seem to be suggesting something different. All must understand that no education system will do any good if the elders do not behave the way they expect the future generations to behave. The system is important but following that is more important and this can not be proved by words but by actions only.
The people of the country saw a ray of hope in the voice raised by many citizens under the leadership of Sh. Anna Ji, but that is getting diluted as per the indication given in the last few days.The Satyagrah by Baba Ramdev and his followeres was given a lot of hype by the media and the government also responded in a manner that the issue of black money is between Baba Ramdev and the government which is not the case. In democracy the government is responsible for every citizen of the country and all should be heard by the people in power. The problems of the corruption and the black money can not be solved in the lounge of the airports or the hotels but in the supreme body of the nation and that is Parliament.The government should not play the blame game but take action to tackle these issues which are proving to be big hurdle in the progress and the development of the nation. The issue should not be made as a tussle between the government and the citizens but be paid desired attention and laws should be enacted so that the menace of corruption and the black money is tackled in an effective manner.
As a teacher, what worries us the most is the impact of all these incidents on the mind of our young children. They have started having a feeling that the two issues mentioned are the part and parcel of the life and it is not possible to get rid of them. The statement given by the prime minister (as reported by the media) does not send positive signal when he says that government does not have any magic stick to tackle these issues. This has hampered the spirit of the enthusiastic people who  want to see this country free of these evils. The recent incidents also make people feel that speaking for the right cause of the country does not make any sense because this does not please a particular caste or the religion and the political bosses will listen to the voice of those people or groups which matter to their vote bank.If this Satyagrah was for the cause of a caste or the religion then the government would not have behaved the way they did in the midnight of 4th and 5th June 2011. The citizens of the country are learning what they are being taught and behaving accordingly.
The government and the members of the society should stop the blame game and should be honest to themselves and also to the country. The government must also feel the mood of the nation against corruption and black money and any voice raised against should not be considered against the government or any minister or the ministry. The trust between the people of the country and the government is very important and that should not be allowed to be in deficit. The members  of the civil society are behaving responsibly and in a matured manner and so should be the response of the government. The time has come to take concrete steps to curb the two Cs before it is too late.