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14Aug 2019

How Do Children Learn

Posted by : Sonal Keshri
Category : Wisdom High International School Nashik
Date :

How do children learn?

Have you heard of differentiated teaching? I had not, until one day my school’s Trustee Ritu Ma’am spoke about it in one of our weekly meeting. In a differentiated classroom, teaching is evolutionary ... While teachers may know more about the subject, they are continuously learning about how their students learn. So we discussed that ongoing collaboration with students is necessary to improve learning opportunities so that they're effective for each student. We at our school decided to implement it and thought of working on ways of tailoring instruction to meet individual needs.

Facilitating group work is excellent for empowering shyer students to participate more in class. Forming mixed-ability groups of pupils gives high achievers a platform to vocalize their ideas, and lower ability students a way of peers. Allocating roles to each member of the group can also help pupils organize themselves according to their different skills and capabilities (linguistic, kinesthetic, listening, speaking, reading & writing) this gives less able students a way to add value and generates more confidence.


We are taught many things in school, but all too often, this is linear learning, textbook learning. I can remember my good old days sitting in classrooms as a child staring to those boring black and white books and aimlessly looking out of the window at passing clouds. But today, was the chance for me to make it interesting for my students. As I learn things visually, so I was keen to find out ways to help my students to do the same. I still remember it was the beginning of the third term where I was supposed to teach sci-fi genre to my kids of Grade 6.

In our school we have one story period every week. Our school management thought of using it for showing films related to the genre we wanted to teach. It was then the English team geared up and started to compile thought-provoking movies for our learners.

We all know today cinema has been one of the greatest influences in our modern life. Movies affect many of us powerfully because of the combined impact of images, music, dialogue, lighting, sound and special effects and we can elicit deep feelings and help us reflect on our views.

I was ready with one of the movie ‘Home’ standing outside the AVR with Grade 6 kids, who were as eager as I was to enjoy the movie. Just before I started showing them the clip I briefed them my aim behind showing the movie. I thought this clip might work really well as it was fully ‘loaded’ with everything a great piece of writing needs to be compelling.  After the movie clip the learners were impatient to see the complete movie. We asked them to bring their pen drives the next day and pasted the movie for them to watch it at home for the weekend.


The next story period I was ready with my worksheet which was designed with magnificent images of the characters from the movie, the setting images and few questions which asked them to describe the same characters and setting.

It worked wonders! To my surprise the learners who use to hesitate to write creative writing independently were now confident while writing their sci-fi story. Sometimes the best writing occurs when the writer is not physically writing but is in his own world of thoughts. The soul of writing comes through the image - what Keats called "soul-making." Images are indeed the language of soul. This was what I had learned and observed.

After seeing the change in attitude of the learners while writing we continued the same methodology with other grades while teaching different genres like fable, fairy tales and mystery.

A well-chosen film clip can provide a great opportunity to model how we arouse learners for creative, narrative writing. Today's writing prompts are inspired by movies and Ted talks too.

I would also like to share one of my experience where dramatization and role-play helped my students to learn the concepts of mystery and myth.

This technique allowed the learners to discover the genre on their own. Here the learners played their own roles of certain characters. For eg: Students were given a mystery case to solve with the characters like detective, victim, witness and officials by creating real life situation and clues. For Myths props were designed and students enacted the Greek mythological story with voice modulation, intonation, diction which sharpened their presentation skills.

Now a day’s many schools try to find out ways to enhance their teaching styles. This is how transformation occurs and it becomes a great stimulus for young learners.

As a teacher of a reputable International School, I feel blessed to walk into ambience where excellence is not merely an act but innovations are always welcome. Lastly I would like to conclude by saying that the true hallmark of excellent teaching is to create ‘life-long learner.’


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Sonal Keshri

I am a middle school teacher . I want to share my story related to my innovative methods of teaching which my school follows. I am proud to have this opportunity to express my views through this blog.

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