Friday, 26 April 2013

An Eye Opener and My Reflection

I am taking a course on understanding the challenges of learning disabilities and how to support children. While discussing the academic challenges that we are facing currently and the learning gaps our children have with my teacher there, she asked me some questions that set me thinking:

Teacher: Why are you doing this course?
Me: I am interested in learning.

Teacher: Why did you sit through the session, which was just a ppt?
Me: Because I could read and make sense of what you were telling.
Teacher: So you felt successful with reading, were motivated, and hence, learned something. The same is true for children – to want to learn to read they need to be able to actually read and then make sense of what they are reading. Only then would they experience success and feel motivated to learn further. Success and motivation are the key factors to learning.

She asked me: do all your children get the opportunity to feel successful in reading in class each day? This set me thinking, do our children come to school just because their parents want them to, or do they want to come because they feel motivated?? Do they actually get the opportunity to experience success with reading and learning each day??? 

The reality is that a large number of our children are unsuccessful with the basic skills required for reading – phonemic and phonological awareness, and alphabetic principle in KG and grade 1 itself. So how can we expect them to be motivated to learn to read when they face failure every time they attempt to read or are forced to read?

Do you think having a structured intervention plan that includes in-class structured instruction and one-on-one intervention in these basic skills will help our children remain motivated and become successful readers??

Kanchan Moray
School Coach, Pune

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