times are rapidly changing – and so the older paradigms of school education are now also evolving – to prepare & develop our children for the future.
Many parents are naturally unsure, of what all to evaluate & look for to identify/ take admission in the right school, for their child.
This note will help you – dear parent to identify the right school for your child @ Gurgaon
As context, igniting the joy of learning – is the most critical outcome, for every child now , as they get ready to become impactful & successful citizens of tomorrow- a FUTURE where all of us will need to continuously learn, up learn, relearn – i.e. develop this life long learning skill, to stay relevant .
We are living in rapidly changing times.
So instead of things that were important earlier, its therefore worth reflecting – on 10 key points to choose the best/right school and what’s very important for educating & nurturing our children today, so as to get them ready for the future.
- LESS IS MORE
LESS STUDENTS/CLASS; OPTIMUM STUDENT TEACHER RATIO & FEWER TOTAL NUMBER OF SECTIONS PER CLASS IN SCHOOL
Given the evolved needs of modern learning & education, and if our goal is “not” to avoid leveraging tutions as significant supplementary support for the child, then its imperative that
- the school chosen does not have too many children in each class. (12-15 children/class is desirable)
- teacher to children ration of around 12 students/teacher is optimum
- equally important is fewer sections /grade – as otherwise the total number of students in the campus becomes very high, leading to a “mobs” like, very busy school environment, especially during school mornings/events/closings. Bullying or lack of selfesteem are sometimes potentially some of the resultant adverse fall outs with too many kids(some schools sadly have thousands of children in a campus) – if the number of sections per class significantly increases beyond 2.
SMALLER COMPACT CAMPUSES
Internationally school campuses are smaller. Schools are internationally organised usually into “nursery”, “primary”,“middle” and “high school” campuses – so many of these age category smaller campuses – especially nursery & primary school campuses are typically neighbourhood campuses with lessor number of children and distinct focus & milieu. Middle and high schools – are sometimes & progressively larger – and given the need for more sports facilities & infrastructure are sometimes more distant from residential neighbourhoods.
Smaller campuses, which should be preferred are highly recommended, as not just fewer children per class, but lesser number of sections and overall lesser number of children allows schools to have greater focus on each child, lessor social ills like bulling and overall a less chaotic school environment, with similar age clusters together.
An indepth, careful review of very large school campuses – with thousands of children – often camouflages some of these problems – and therefore its best to look for smaller neighborhood school campuses – with fewer – say max of few hundred children, certainly not few “thousand” chaotic schools – with so ‘many” children.
Let’s try to reflect on how “unsettling” it could potentially be for your “small child” to go daily to a school, with mobs of children at the entrance, exit, each floor, building, playground? safety or security issues could also potentially crop up, despite the systems or best efforts of the school in such large campuses.
A GOOD NEIGHBORHOOD SCHOOL IS MORE PRACTICAL & IMPACTFUL FOR A CHILD – THAN THE FAR AWAY “BEST SCHOOL”
As leaving for school at 7 or 8 am, can make a significant difference for both the child & parents, each morning – besides the extra daily “wasteful extra commute” of say an hour or more, day after day, which can better utilised on other useful aspects – including morning/evening exercise, activities or study.
Ideally look for a good school, within a radius of 5 Kms, of your residence.
- TEACHER COMMITMENT & QUALITY
is perhaps one of the most important parameters to try and assess, dear parent. As more than school infrastructure, – good, committed, quality “teachers” can “transform” our children. Conversations in some of the school staff may help to assess this– as also conversations with other/ex-parents. Other lead indicators of teacher commitment are parameters like ‘staff attrition”, culture, class/school upkeep, etc – which during school visit conversations with school staff can reveal a lot – on this soft, but important parameter
- SCHOOL CULTURE & PEER GROUP
A warm, nurturing, positive & respectful culture can be easily sensed in any organisation, more so in a school – so a walk through when the school is running – can help to assess this. Its rather important, as this is like a 2nd home for any child, and peer culture does make a huge difference to shape our children, in the early/younger formative years. Children emulate other children/adults naturally – so the peers impact the child. So if you’re from a upper middle sections of society – the company of children in the school are from super rich families – used to very expensive dress code, fancy cars, frequent international holidays, etc – can lead to peer pressure, which may or may not be positive. Each family/parent may need to think through this soft, but significant parameter carefully, even if you can afford such a school, given the impact that this does have on impressionable minds.
- CURRICULAM & PEDAGOGY
Curriculum & pedagagy is often classified as CBSE, ICSC, NCERT, Cambridge, IB Boards. while there are pros and cons of each curriculum – it is important to realise that practically they are all good, continuously improved well-regulated Internationally recognised educating frameworks – and in the long run, which curriculum the child has been tutored on – is “not” a material differentiator, for admission to good colleges or success in life. Incidentally most of these schooling frameworks are now further improving under the new education policy(NEP) under roll out in India – which will majorly improve school education in India, going forwards – and thus all these school frameworks work well – especially in the early/primary/middle school years. As a parent, it maybe worthwhile to keep in mind that differences in these frameworks essentially become somewhat relevant in middle/high schools (i.e. closer to class 10 or 12) – as they are mainly schooling ability assessment & examination bodies. also now that new Common University Entrance Test(CUET) is getting rolled out under India’s evolved new education policy(NEP), which is just like the SAT test, the importance of scoring high marks in class 12 – for getting admission into college is getting diluted, going forwards – as all that will really matter is the child’s CUET score, which like SAT scores will test the child’s core abilities.
- WHOLISTIC EDUCATION – NOT JUST ACADEMICS
This is self-evident, especially in these evolving times. All round wholistic development is by far, more important, than just focus on academics, for success in life – and is considered to be futuristic approach by most education think tanks globally. This includes diverse abilities – such as fluency in communication & social skills, broad spectrum abilities in both STEM & arts, physical flexibility & strengthening, comfort with games, sports, theatre, dance, music, communication, life skills, values, -and new age skills like innovation & comfort of doing things in teams. How all of this is integrated into the curriculum & pedagogy, day, week, month, year plans of the school – can be interesting to discuss and understand at a high level, dear parent, for which a school walk through and dialogue with school staff helps
- PROJECT/ACTIVITIES LED LEARNING
Rote learning is obviously “old” world now.
“Purpose” of learning is very important – to ignite & retain learning interest in the child. And hence projects/activities are useful, especially when done in small groups, which enable / illustrate and reinforce the “how” and “why” of learning thesubject . This is the new age, Internationally accepted & researched method of futuristic new age learning & schooling – whereby children discover & appreciate the utility of the subject. Dialogue/discussion in group activities helps to discover and learn better. All this is described as “experiential” learning by some schools.
Although it is important, for us to carefully evaluate how its being done “and look for schools – where largely “physical” experiential” learning/activites including learning “life skills” such as fixing devices and the actually playing with innards of technology, creativity & art – and “not” SCREEN based experiential learning only. SCREENS based learning makes children addicted to screens – and besides. there is enough and more evidence that extensive use of screens does impact eyes. So while by high school, some subject level understanding/ discovery via screens will need to supplement learning via books & physical projects – in the early & primary/middle grades screen based schooling is best avoided.
In many advanced countries like France & Germany – screens based schooling is completely banned for children upto age 12 .
- VENTILATED, AIRY, SPACIOUS, HYGENIC, GREEN CAMPUS, INFRASTRUCTURE
Good Ventilation is “critical for children”. Airing the classrooms and allowing “still” enclosed air to flow out, replenished by fresh air, the oxygen levels for health and safety of children is all enabled by ventilation.
UNICEF has been emphasising the importance of cross-ventilation, by opening windows for a few hours daily, during COVID times too, as a critical input especially for schools globally – as they started opening up – to enable virus and bacteria to be aired out. Lots of greenery, including some air cleaning plants – help in mitigating/eliminating adverse impact of pollution – in those months, besides recharging the air and making the environment positive, which plants help . Air is one the five elements, and thus important for the health for our dear ones, visiting parents and staff !
And therefore, given humanity’s recent COVID experience – and number of hours children end up spending at school, there is a question mark on fully enclosed, airconditioned spaces/schools?
- NO SCREENS or VERY LIMITED SCREENS BASED LEARNING
Research indicates that schooling during the early/middle years – particularly about age 12 – should be done without screens. Writing, painting, doing with hands reinforces the neurons and brain-body abilities in ways – which screen based learning does not. So learning on IPADs/tablets should be a strict NO. there is considerable debate on this matter – and schools are broadly broken up into two camps- with some big brand, expensive schools leveraging IPADS/tablets/screens extensively – with almost everything including writing/painting/creative work done on screens – and the school bag – having a laptop and not workbooks as the major schooling tool. Considering that many advanced countries like France and Germany have banned the use of screens in schools – upto age 12 , it is worthwhile to delay and gradually introduce some screen based schooling , only by middle & further in high school.
- NO NEED TO LOOK FOR “CRADLE TO HIGH SCHOOL” SCHOOLING AT ONE BIG SCHOOL CAMPUS.
Times are changing. gurgaon has fortunately got lots of schools – and relative to many other cities, its easy to shift schools – and many students-parents do change schools later/especially during middle school as the focus of the child becomes clearer. This city – also have a lot of migrant/mobile population, with many parents constrained to move cities – for work – and hence most schools have seats getting vacant/available across classes – as families move out and like many families coming into Gurgaon, its very easy to change schools here – so dear parent don’t worry – if your child cannot get into your perceived brand school, its ok, maybe you’ll get into that campus in a couple of years. As it is, many of us have studied in different schools and colleges – through our lives – for various reasons – so it does not really matter if your child is not accepted in your dream school now.
We earnestly hope the above helps dear parent! Do let us know your thoughts and please do write to us or visit us, if you have more questions.
At the sixth element school – we appreciate that “learning” is a natural instinct, just like many of our natural urges like breathing, eating, etc. The innate desire to learn, understand, discover, learn new capabilities, skills, simply needs to be catalysed & nurtured, by various aspects such great teachers, the right curriculum, cutting edge new age teaching methodologies and green, positive environment, so “learning & discovery becomes a joy” and children just look forward to going to school.
Our school’s internationally benchmarked learning curriculum – “like in most developed countries” – recognises that the first early & primary grade years upto the age of 12 life especially, is foundational for lifelong well-being, overall growth and development across all dimensions – physical, cognitive, and socio-emotional – which we call – the sixth element , i.e. igniting the joy of learning !
Learning is not a static body of knowledge – rather it’s a lifelong skill and capability – and a quality modern/contemporary global future ready school recognises this.
What happens in a high quality school to quench this natural desire to learn is therefore an important question? Are we forcing children to learn – or are we allowing the sponge like brains of our fast developing children to enjoy learning, discovery. learning to differentiate right from wrong, i.e values further strengthens these innate capabilities
@ THE SIXTH ELEMENT SCHOOL WE BELIEVE IN THE IMPORTANCE OF CATALYSING & “THE SIXTH ELEMENT” FOR EVERY CHILD. OUR CURRICULAM IS BENCHMARKED WITH THE BEST INTERNATIONALLY, WHILE DRAWING FROM OUR CORE ANCIENT BEST PRACTICES. THANKS TO ITS 18 YEARS EXPERIENCE AND ITS CORE CHILD DEVELOPMENT PRACTICES DRAWN FROM PIAGET, VYGOSTKY AND BRUNER – WHICH IS INCIDENTALLY THE RESOURCE POOL – FOR THE FOUNDATIONAL YEARS SCHOOL CURRICULUM OF THE UPGRADED NEW EDUCATION (NEP) UNDER ROLL OUT IN INDIA NOW.
#Southcity1 #sector31 #sector40 #sector45 #sector46 #sector15 #sector17 #Tataprimanti #sector72 #sector70 #sector48 #sector69 #sector47 #sector49 #sector33 #oldgurgaon #vatikacity #centralpark #vipul #spazeprivi #tulip #gurugram #gurgaon #top #school #best #sohnaroad #spr #daycare #dayboarding #sector81 #sector82 #sector83 #top #experiential #parenting #ventilated #safety #sushantlok #nearby #near #education #affordable #scholarship #safety #safe #ventilated #academic #excellence #lowscreentime #nursery #primary #daycare #child #development #tutions #sector37 #sector39 #admissions #NEP #founadtional #years #global #International #sixthelement #bestschoolforkids #admission
the Sixth Element School
the school children love
SOUTH CITY 1 . TATA PRIMANTI (sector 72) . ONLINE
85272-74695 or 97736-32626
limited enrolment available in pre-NURSERY, NURSERY, KG & DAYCARE, grade 1 in 2022 & 2023 @ Gurgaon’s only single section boutique VENTILATED, AIRY, SPACIOUS. GREEN CAMPUSES