Class 6-8

The teachers of our school planned that each teacher would take up a subject of their choice and would teach it to 15 students of a class. Although I am a teacher of Physical Education, I chose to take up the responsibility to teach Environmental Studies for a month because of my interest in the subject. I was assigned 15 students from grade IV, though, after a week, I got the opportunity to interact with all 30 children of grade IV.
 
This pandemic has shown that ‘necessity is the basis of all adaptations’ by creating a need for our teachers to build their skills in various areas of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), once alien to them, just so that they can reach their students.
This article is based on interviews with adolescent girls in the age-group of 12-16 years from seven states across India who are in residential and day schools and informal learning spaces, such as community clubs. The objective was to understand how COVID-19 has impacted their lives, particularly the aspects of schooling, education and learning.
 
COVID-19 and its impact
 
A scientific school health programme
 
Education will always be a powerful force in shaping future generations. The current COVID-19 pandemic represents a teachable moment that can reformulate societies.
 
A phrase that has got added into our collective lexicon since the COVID-19 pandemic hit is, the new normal and it is being used to refer to a host of things. We have begun to hear it increasingly in the education domain, particularly in the context of schools. This article attempts to explore whether the educational endeavour in the current times can be considered as ‘normal’ and therefore, eligible for the tag of ‘the new normal’.
 
The new normal
 
The pandemic has been a turning point in the way we lived our lives - impacting livelihoods, health, relationships and most of all, education. As a result, children have grown up very fast and have lost social interaction, creative play and basic experiences of nature in everyday-life activities. These have been replaced by screen time, leading to their development being compromised.
 
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted student learning to a large extent. Educational institutions have explored various online options to ensure uninterrupted learning. However, there is enough and more evidence to suggest that remote learning options do not work. Education is a deeply intimate process of enquiry, discovery and meaning-making that happens between the teacher, the student and her peers and personalisation and collaboration are necessary to make learning possible.
COVID-19 in children
 
What is education?
 
It has been more than eight months since the COVID-19 lockdown saga began in India. Reports on the impact of the pandemic and the subsequent lockdown on the lives of children have been coming out. In June and July 2020 several reports were published on the situation on the ground as well as its impact on children.

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