The Corona batches of students will become cheaters in their lives if they do not realise that the COVID-sponsored ease is deceptive. The competitive world that they are going to enter will be brutal. The jobs are not going to come as gifts and cakes. The struggle that awaits them is not an alien thing. What they need to possess are personal integrity and enterprising acumen.
Trust Deficit is a fatal ailment that this world suffers from. This blog can also fall prey to that demon of passive response But, the way we are treating ourselves is worrisome. Let us see the things with wide-open eyes. What lies ahead is unknown. If fortunate, we shall have a safe world; if not, we will be in a lockdown for a longer time than expected. In the latter case, we shall be required to survive on the basis of what we are. People who could save their jobs and could get new jobs once they lost the previous one - are those who have kept their best spirits together. School children who are unfortunately fortunate to see the world struggling have a chance to see who our perseverance and integrity matter in life. Alas! They are not up to this. They have more things to do. As one of my fellow teachers rightly pointed out: They are becoming a generation of cheaters who think they are smarter than others in terms of doing their online tests. As a teacher and parent, we can see this.
There is always a silver lining in a dark cloud. The positive thing is that we do not have dark clouds yet. The situation is grim as we fear that the life lessons the children are learning shall hurt their 'integrity and honest self'. Corrective action can be initiated by asking them bluntly what they feel about their online behaviour. These questions will not be above their intellect. So feel free to ask. Even if they do not initiate any correction or check, do not worry - you have done that for them. Rather than becoming a ringmaster, be the one who talks and makes sense to them. Relate the virtue of internet maturity and internet integrity with their own future. Ask the teachers and parents to come along. Adapt to the case-study approach of teaching and learning.
We have reached a point where we agree on the utility of in-person teaching and learning. Schools and classrooms do have a role in the making of human beings. While being online, the convenience clause has given a rescue passage. However, the best times to learn have been here for those who have remained in safe health. The time and the freedom to choose what one wants to read or watch is very much in the palm. Hence, serve them with sensible and strong alternatives. Without any doubt, things that make sense always make space for themselves. Teachers shall need to sweat more and school leaders need to dare to acknowledge the emergency to launch a drive for change.
It is harsh to say but we have failed as a society. Parents have failed as parents. Teachers have failed as teachers. Leaders have failed what they were supported to be. Everyone has failed to preserve the fundamental virtues of being a human. The 'intelligence and intellect' that made us different has not been acknowledged the way it works. To conspire and to deceive has not been the virtue that our minds ask for. But, yes, the way of the 'world' is like that only. Survival of the fittest is the excuse that has been given to lie, to cheat, to be untrue to your own words and work. This doublespeak has resulted in nothing actually. We do not grow when we try to deviate from the norms; we fail the future. So, the students and the children need to be engaged in dialogue. Make them speak, express their apprehensions, temptations and fascinations. The litmus test of being honest with your own self is quite easy. The things that you do and can share with others are good deeds. I mean to say, you say something and someone wants you to repeat the words - you do that with ease or you deny it? The distinction comes at that very moment. The school children need to see themselves in their own eyes. If they feel that these are 'childhood memories' they are creating, that is a false notion. If we can believe the most successful people (not in terms of money) personal integrity is the best virtue to have.
If a student reads this blog: Do something that your future self is thankful for. That's it for you. Make your own life by making your own choices.
Do not consider the online mode of learning a mere farce. It is just a way to keep you connected with the learning. This is virtual, not fake. The success depends on both parties. You can make it real or reel.
CBSE or the UGC or AICTE has nothing to do with it. It has never been their responsibility to inculcate values or virtues in us. If that would have been on them, we would have got a different world on paper. Institutions never make things happen; people do. We - the people - have not adhered to the principles we worship in our deities. The country that boasts and encashes upon Lord 'RAM' has things to introspect. We need to see the ideals with some more truthfulness and acknowledge the lessons that we have imbibed in our life as well.
Bring your mind to a lighter note: