Opportunities Students get Beyond Textbooks
Posted by Strategic Communications, JGI Group on 30 July 2018
The various education systems across the world follow a similar pattern that is based on the principle of acquisition of occupational skills. They largely encourage rational thinking or reasoning and give minimal attention to the enhancement of the emotional, spiritual, cultural, and social, aspects of the individual. The skills to critically and creatively approach a problem, building a sense of respect for another, embrace harmony in diversity and an urge to develop a quest for self-discipline are some of the things that are losing their connection with the upcoming generations.
It’s been long since it’s been proved that children learn better when allowed to learn in different ways. This is because they are not limited or stunted in their expression of delight, fear, disgust, and a lot of other emotions along with questions, counter-questions, verifications and experimentation to know more. In simple words, they are given the freedom of choice in learning and doing. Children, parents, schools, educators, curriculum boards and all involved in the schooling venture must be able to determine the difference between learning and performing well and realize that the best students are often those who are allowed to explore.
Today, digital resources have become more accessible and easily available for the educational purposes. Although textbooks are beginning to be replaced by them, children are still lacking in their communication skills and confidence levels. This highly calls for learning beyond textbooks at schools. The reason someone wants to learn something is that it may be interesting, important or relevant – and this is what should guide educators to bring in an interest in learning.
Many have worked at developing an appreciation for the environment, art, and music, and athletics, etc. because extracurricular activities have been the pinhole through which a world of opportunities have been unlocked for students. Of course, each child has to be given a basic grounding in all subjects regardless of talent or aptitude. But other activities surrounding studies often have been a tremendous boost in the holistic growth of the child.
Benefits of Extracurricular Activities:
Socialization & Interpersonal Skills
It is the most helpful benefit children can get out of engaging in extracurricular activities. The social interaction that they develop gives them the skill to be a socially active, helpful, empathetic, and responsible persons as they progress into adulthood. Field trips, traveling, and tours help them to know about other places, people, customs, and cultures. When faced with situations they learn to apply their problem-solving skills to function appropriately in society. They also learn to adjust themselves with other people, with the help of team-based extracurricular activities.
Expression of Self
It is imperative that earning is not restricted to classrooms and textbooks because students must venture outdoors, to learn how to connect with their environment and develop the knowledge and practices of environmental sustainability. That greatly helps in the development of emotional and moral development of the child. Extracurricular activities enable students to express themselves freely and inculcate values of co-operation and empathy. They also help them prepare for your future challenges and problems.
For best students to emerge out, the teaching-learning environment needs to get strengthened by learning beyond textbooks at schools. When a spectrum of opportunities are provided to children to explore and experiment the real world around them, they begin to view the abstract information in textbooks in and connect it with the tangible through relevance. For example, debates can help bring out ideas of why something happens one way and the other as well. Skills of reasoning, speech fluency and competence are boosted, without making the learning process monotonous.
The motivation for learning and application of what is learnt is developed giving the children a desire to learn more. According to Beal’s (2010) investigation, consistent participation in extracurricular activities contributes to long-term educational success. This ensures that children become interested in higher studies and ongoing learning.
When students are active in other activities, they develop a need to take up leadership along with managing various social and interpersonal skills in the team-based activities. Future leadership is the now factor, and students can start off right away, from childhood. According to Baker, Akiba, and LeTendre’s (2001) studies, the students’ active involvement in activities associated with learning beyond textbooks at schools contributes to leadership skills and the ability to plan, manage, organize, implement, and evaluate. This can build values of sacrifice and control and ultimately help in grooming a balanced personality. They also learn the art of time management and are less likely to procrastinate.
Jain Heritage School (JHS) offers such a variety of extracurricular activities that include: Educational movies and documentaries, plays, sound clips and audios, dramatic play or role-play, literary, acting & drama, music, art, lingual, oratory, community, dance, Clubs, and sports.
Arts activities have two types: Visual arts (Painting & Sculpture, Fabric painting, Stained glass painting, etc.), and Performing Arts (Vocal, Mime, Contemporary Dance, Yakshagana, Guitar, etc.).
When it comes to proper channelization of physical, mental and emotional health, sports has a lot of weightage for the students at JHS. Here’s why. A study by Harrison (2003), investigated whether 9th graders' participation in school sports team, would relate to the higher level of psychological functioning and healthy behavior than participation in other extra-curricular activities. Participants in any type of extracurricular activity were significantly more likely than non-participants to have healthy lifestyles. A state-of-the-art sports complex, with 7 centers including a pool, tennis court, bb court and fitness area, are some of the sports infrastructures the school provides. Swimming is mandatory for all classes.
It is imperative that children are given this kind of holistic empowerment to boost growth in all areas through learning beyond textbooks at schools for them to turn out as the best students, not just academically, but in every way possible.