Sunday, 9 December 2018

Essay on Don't Limit a Child to your own learning, for he was born in another time."

Essay on Don't Limit a Child to your own learning, for he was born in another time."

“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child's own natural desire to learn."
-Maria Montessori
Rabindranath Tagore
Rabindranath Tagore
This is a famous quote of Rabindranath Tagore that means that the questioning nature of young mind should not be changed or suppressed, just because the knowledge of elders is limited to their specific time and so this does not mean that the question does not have an answer. Elders try answering the questions in their own limited learning, which should not be the case otherwise. So, the child should be allowed to learn, the young mind should be allowed to blossom by questioning and continuous learning. Children are exceptionally talented and they learn in different ways to the way their elders learnt at school.

The single thing that is simple but seems complex and differentiates the generations over time is ‘change’. It's the beauty of this change that makes us adapt to the changing environment, habitat and time. Change allows us to be accommodative to the new conditions, thereby adding new attributes to our personalities. Thus, without this change we can't stand alone as the leading survivors in the Darwin's 'Evolution of Life! With every advancing day, new opportunities, ideas and challenges are thrown up. Unless we constantly adapt to the changing needs of the surroundings, we can't compete, advance and sustain. A person therefore cut off from the mainstream way of living is considered archaic and backward.

Today's young generation is always a step ahead than the old generation in terms of its thinking and application of knowledge and so will be the next generation as compared to us. Time and again, the young generation raises questions and doubts regarding certain traditional rituals and superstitious beliefs based in their own reasoning and scientific interpretations. At this point of time, they either get answered to in an unconvincing manner or are asked to follow the traditional beliefs without any arguments. This puts them in a situation where they start doubting everything told by their elders and in lack of proper answers to their doubts, their faith starts fading sooner or later.

Old generation, in fear of losing its supremacy tries to stop the younger ones to question, argue or raise doubt as they are unable to answer their questions or they do not want their misinterpretations to be uncovered. Thereby, this leads to brutal murder of the scientific temper and enthusiasm in the younger ones. The society grows when the inhabitants are willing enough to put in some effort to the well being and development of the young generation. If the society believes that it has conquered the knowledge and the young ones should blindly follow the existing beliefs, then the scientific temper starves and the society as a whole faces downfall.

At some point of time in the past, traditional professions were hereditary. The livelihood activities were practiced in the family chain through generations and this represented the character of self sustained village economy. But, with advancement in time and with beginning of modern era, the situation transformed. With growing level of modernization in production, administration, spread of education, overcrowding and more; emerged the change in conditions of a revolutionary character. Migration to the towns and cities led to emerging of a population of a new generation of educated youth who aspired for jobs in administration, new ideas blew far and wide. All of this remained intact and broke the shackles of confinement.

Then the world of such people remained small, backward and uncivilized as compared to the present way of living. They expected their kids to carry forward their pursuits, their lineage and confine to the narrow way of living as they and their fathers did. The knowledge and wisdom gained by them through their seniors was limited and they failed to sense the changing needs.

The Indian society was rife with rituals, superstitions and old beliefs around the six century BC. Then the people starved still were not allowed to question the existing beliefs and look for other avenues of survival. The class system became very rigid and the priestly class left no chance to exploit the masses. Then with the arrival of Buddha, the eightfold path of life was proposed to the people which led to the path of end of suffering in life. This helped in breaking the chains of the past and look to the future. But, again in medieval times, the society became weary with no innovation. This stagnation brought in several superstitions and fear of the unknown which were exploited by the British to subordinate the country. But, through the efforts of social reformers and several young leaders; the existing superfluous rituals were challenged which led to new progressive path for the Indian society. The scientific temper and reason in the masses was brought in and this led the wheel of growth going. Education on scientific lines was started and India was made aware of its glorious past. It was only after the society was mobilized this way, that the freedom struggle of the Indian National Congress left its impact.

This teaches us a very important lesson- that change is very important in order to grow. The society is structured out of individuals and individual growth is equally important. This growth is attainable by entertaining and encouraging the questions of children. Through this the proper knowledge will be passed to the younger generation which has the responsibility of future resting on its shoulders.

The child should be allowed to grow under watchful eyes and the teaching should be confined to basic values rather than being imposed with one's ideals. He should be provided a proper avenue to exhibit his potentialities. And the society and humanity progresses only when a child grows into a rational being; for he is the future from whom one borrows the present. Questioning the conventional or traditional way will lead to the development of scientific temper and the question provided with right answer develops rationality and in quest of answer research is born which fuels the seeds for growth of a nation. This is how a society progresses and a progressive society needs progressive young generation. So, encourage the child to learn, question and grow; rather than restricting him or limiting him to your own understanding.



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