Education is a fundamental right. It becomes a vital catalyst for any social change. The four R’s - Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, and Computers, the three H’s - Head, Heart, Hand can be pooled together by framing the curriculum, which provides innovative methods to stimulate learning in the new generation, without sacrificing the deep-rooted values.
Learning has always been an enjoyable experience. One can see, the present day education increases mental, physical and emotional pressure on the students. They cram information rigorously, attend the tuition and coaching classes; moreover, they are forced to learn maths even if they lack aptitude for the same. In addition to these, there exists an omnipresent pressure from peers, parents and the society. While approaching the mountain peak, they fail to notice the beautiful surroundings around them. Each child is an individual with distinctive personality, talent, and capabilities and given a choice, each one will excel in one or other field.
The country does not need many leaders. There can be more C.V. Ramans, Sathyajit Rays, Ambanis, Tendulkars and Patkars. But are the students given these chances? The present day education system gives way for cramming, frustrations, depressions, and finally result in dropouts. The need of the hour is a system, which injects new blood with the vital tonic catering to the academic and non-academic, a system to suit the needs of the changing, deteriorating society. Apart from the job market, it should also inculcate in a student, sensitivity to the surroundings, courage, cooperation, devotion, hard work, self-esteem, self-reliance, self-discipline, responsibility, trust, honesty, kindness, liberty of thought and expression. How can we achieve this? Only through value based education.
Society is passing through a serious crisis that is plagued by the conspicuous absence of values. Students should be taught to logically differentiate between the ‘want’ and the ‘need’; to know the difference between material needs and the spiritual needs. They need to know that protecting the nature’s gift, love for animals, friendship, patriotism, non-violence, tolerance, equality etc; will definitely fetch them happiness and satisfaction.
The reason for the absence of value education is our society and the media. The absence of joint family has lead to disintegration of values into a world of nuclear family, where parents can hardly spare time with and for their wards. Come Independence Day or the Republic Day, they bargain sleep with patriotism. Thereby not allowing their wards to attend the flag hoisting ceremony in school. Patriotism has miserably failed. They encourage the child to lie over the phone conveniently to avoid attending to it. Truth takes a back seat. Further, some bring stationery from office for their wards thus misuse of power take the driver’s seat, the child is confused with the conflicting dual personality of the parents where the action differs from the speech. Looking upto the parents as role model is buried.
The mushrooming of old age homes depicts the scenario of uncared senior citizens-. Again parents are to be blamed. They are responsible .The children are unaware of the home environment and they lack emotional support and sensitivity. Parents’ duty is to teach them the right step at the right time in their life. To top it, the exposure from mass media, films, television serials play a pivotal role. Parents are totally out of control of their latch –key wards. They are scot-free to do what they want. (Either pursuing their hobbies or be a slave to the remote.) They have a lot of time to go haywire. One could hardly get any moral values, and culture from these programmes. Exposed at such a tender age when they cannot think logically or ethically, they have no option but to adapt to violence, vulgarity, crime and unethical means. They embrace ‘ I want it now’ culture. The invasion of television and elite peer has brought in the mad race for materialism. They are cowed down by the money dictated behaviour, and are eager to live among the flashy, dazzling society which is sure to have concealed pit falls.
The present ‘make believe’ society gives an impression that you can do any thing and still get away with it , which instigates them to their unbridled aspirations and ambitions. To relieve the present generation from the clutches of unwanted cultural invasion, value education is the only thing to come to the younger generation’s rescue. This will surely bring a bright future.
In order to achieve this, educational institutions should include value education as a hidden agenda in their curriculum. This change is sure to help students blossom into physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually good multi -faceted human beings. After all they are tomorrow’s leaders. Values are caught and not taught.
J. Krishnamurti said ,’The future is now’ IS IT SO? [ written in july 2005 ]