Dr. Madhuri Sagale - Principal, Orchids - The International School, Thane

Dr. Sagale graduated with a Bachelor in Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery and went on to pursue medicine for a brief period. However, she was more inclined towards the field of education so pursued her Masters in Psychology, and then eventually completed her B.Ed to get into the profession of teaching. She was felicitated with Orchids Annual Star Award for Innovation and Team Building and Marketing among all the schools. Dr.Madhuri was nominated as Secretary for Vasa Virar Sahodaya CBSE schools. In her career as an academician for over 15 years she has been felicitated with numerous awards, notably is the Award of Excellence from EBS Women Achievers by Ms. Kiran Bedi (ExIPS officer) for the contribution in the field of education for special needs students (2016). She presently serves as the Principal, Orchids – The International School, Thane. 

Academic education has traditionally been restricted to the teaching-learning process wherein a set pattern of the curriculum is followed along with few co-curricular and extracurricular activities. The ratio of which has always been skewed heavily towards academics. All-round development of students is essential, wherein academics do play a vital role in shaping the future of the child. It lays the foundation of a future for children by equipping them with skill sets to face the world and make a mark for themselves. 

Modern education focuses on the intellectual and emotional quotient of the child. Hence academic education must be supplemented with a generous dose of co-curricular and extracurricular activities. Twenty-first-century learning refers to developing knowledge, and life skills as a part of the classroom experience. It encompasses critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication, all of which are identified as essential tools to adapt to the modern work environments outside of the educational institutes. 

  • Some ways to incorporate co-curricular activities which not just help relax, but also help promote life skills include reading with expressions, debate sessions, workshops, conference presentations, group discussions, creative writing, music, and drama. The best way students can learn is through involvement. 
  • Dramatization of lessons: Using theatre in education is a new method that many teachers are employing to help students grasp lessons better. Not only does the dramatization help, but it also involves students as actors and playwrights. 
  • Exhibitions and live experiments: Schools can also organise exhibitions as yet another way to have students demonstrate experiments before a live audience. It helps with practical learning and supports in boosting the confidence of children to speak/perform to a live audience. 
  • Learning and training: Playing a musical instrument has been known to help develop the musical intelligence of a child. Music and musical instruments help children deal with stress, and can be a great way to relax. Not everything has to be about benefits, sometimes children also have to be taught how to relax. 
  • Robotics: Robotics has recently picked up the pace and has been a big hit with students who are good with visual-spatial intelligence and love to play with machines. Children learn to assemble different parts and build a moving robot. 

No one can deny that experiential learning plays a big role in the development of a child. Apart from specific activities, field trips, educational tours, and industrial visits leave long term memories and develop social skills. Outdoor sporting activities are also loved by students and helps develop their kinaesthetic skills and importantly, team-work and sportsman spirit.

Holistic development is a natural outcome if students are encouraged to indulge in them in the right amount. A little bit of encouragement will help students get involved in a variety of activities and get hands-on experience day in and day out. 

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