>> Sunday, September 6, 2009
The topic this month is "Teachers: Aaj Kal". It is a bilingual topic, English and Hindi. So, those who are completely ignorant about Hindi, I am presenting a short description of the topic. The words aaj means today and kal means the days bracketing today. So, Kal can mean both yesterday and tomorrow. But, Aaj Kal when used together can also mean "Nowadays". It is very confusing. But thankfully Blog-a-ton Founder Marshal Vipul Grover has explicitly said that the topic should mean "Teachers: Yesterday and Today". But, Yesterday means History and Today means current afairs here. So, no doubts should be there about the meaning of the topic.
Well, to start with I must say that the topic is very confusing as From where we start. So, I am trying to put everything that I have about teachers in my mind including my 18 years of experience with them and the legends.
In India, we had the gurukuls as the earliest schools. The gurukuls were like the boarding schools where students had to stay, work and study. Since royal families did not work so they went with servants who also studied with them, so the teachers were supposed to be partial to them, but if they did not they might face consequences depending upon the king. In general teachers were good and loved their students. But, there were cases of dandaoing the students also. Dronacharya asked for the thumb of Ekalavya as fees.
Then I am coming directly to time of my Dad, when Freedom struggle was still a part of current affairs. Well, my dad says that he doesn't remember any of his teachers. But, I suppose he wants me not to cribb him. So, I asked my mom about her teachers. She said she had good teachers as well as bad teachers. But she spared me the details about the bad teachers but told about the good teachers. She was one of the youngest in her school since then childrens were sent to school at an older age. So, she was being loved by all students and teachers alike. The teachers used to bring various fruits that were being produced in their homestead farms and bring it to schools for students. Well, nowadays teachers are not that well positioned to afford it so no comparisons in this point. Headmasters used to go to temples before exams. And it included even the rationalist teachers which was quite a thing to do. Because, they did want to leave any stone unturned for good results.
My mom had a chemistry teacher who used to give English tuitions, sometimes even for free, because Chemistry was not the problem for students, it was the English medium that was used to write answers which was difficult. He definitely had great analytical skills. Nowadays, the analytical skills are quite ignored in Teacher's Training. This skills are very necesaary to understand the problems a student might face.
Now, I come to my experiences. I had rather a mixed bag of experience. Earliest, I rememeber my Class I Dey Mam. I have a dedicated a post to her in one of my blogs. She was very strict but she also loved us like her own children. Then there was another teacher we had when we were in Class VI who got confused and taught us Animal Kingdom and Plant Kingdom in the same level as Class XI because she was teaching that to Class XI in the first period and to us in the second period. It was not the only thing that we remember about her. She used to be a moral police being a hot siren herself. Then there were the Hindi Teachers. If the Hindi Teacher was a Lady Teacher she always was good to us. She used to treat us like young adults and give us intellectual talks about Hindi Literature. This had a very positive effec on us. I will not comment on the male Hindi Teachers as they were typical in all the KVs. Then we had an English Teacher who loved all students who did good in English. She cared only about English Subject and thought that only intelligent students can do better in English. She loved me but she loved my brother more because he was better.
After school I was in College, St. Anthony's College. If School taught me good things then College taught me how to enjoy those. The USP of our College was the environment. We would spend our off ours in College, even in Sundays we were found in the College. It was great fun. Marks had less weightage then talent in our times. It was the teachers who were responsible for good result of the college. The College provided all the things a teacher might need and the teachers were supposed to deliver the results. So, we had a one on one realtionship with most of our teachers. Most teachers knew us by name and knew our positive and negative traits. They were like friends. Sometimes, after exam when we were depressed, a teacher will come and try to console us and they even offered us smoke with tea. Well, I never smoked in front of them but it was definitely a gesture that I remember. Sometimes I even attended Mass Comm. Classes because I was interested in it. This was another feature in our college. You could attend other department classes in off classes or with your departmental heads permission. Ever More Better Ever, the motto of our college has often been maintained.
There was a Physics Teacher named James Blah. We used to call him James Bond 007. Not because of his name only. He was a bond in the true sense. He never used to bring any notes with him and start with the last point where he left in the last class and it seemed to come out naturally. We used to think that he must have knows this by heart this after all this years of service as a Teacher. But, once after finishing his course he asked if we had problem in other parts of the subject. We told and he taught us those topics in equally good manner. And if this was not enough he even taught us Maths and the Chemistry students said that he even taught them Chemistry. Now, that is called clear concepts.
Then I went for MCA in Jorhat Engineering College, Jorhat. JEC as we call it. Now, it is a well known fact that the art of dandaoing is thrust in the teachers of Engineering College. Although, I had a very awful experience, there were some funny experiences also. Once the University dandaoed us. The teacher who used to teach us felt that he was also dandoed so he took the question paper added some 100 questions to it and made the list of probable question and gave it to us. All of us passed with good marks. We came to know about it only later on after we left the college. The list of probables also improved our concepts because knowing all 1oo + qusetions well enough is a tough thing to achieve. JEC did made me a different person. The wide variety of backgrounds of students had a positive effect in me.
I have a new set of teachers. This are my friends in the Gym. There is no instructor in my Gym. So, the veterans take their time out and teach you how to do each exercise. And they do it for free.
I guess I have written more than enough and bloggers are not supposed to write long posts. It is against rules, so I stop.
P.S.- I won't say how was I as a Teacher.