THE TEACHER AND THE TAUGHT
WHY WE MUST IGNORE TAGORE
"Good teachers," wrote Tagore," activate children’s minds instead of helping them to assimilate and collect information, and inspire children through their own self-development. They encourage them to work on the teacher’s own original projects and thereby travel together on their journey to more understanding."
The learner learns not because of the content , or the text, or the pedagogy; the learns learns because he trusts the teacher. We drink the water if we trust the vessel.The journey of a learner to the learned is made possible only by the presence of a teacher.The teacher remains a learner and a companion at each step of this journey.
"[A] teacher can never truly teach unless he is still learning himself. A lamp can never light another lamp unless it continues to burn its own flame."
Tagore argues that teachers would be strengthened through a higher status that, in India, might come through the title "guru." He also argues that teacher's education needed to improve, and that it should include a thorough understanding of children’s psychology[. Their teaching would furthermore be of higher value if teachers were given more freedom regarding their teaching methods and, to a certain degree, regarding the content of what they teach.
In general, Tagore is convinced that education "is not a matter of 'teaching', of methodology or of 'educational equipment' but depends on the personality of the teacher and the relationship to the student.This relationship is central to the teaching learning activity.
In this day's climate of distrust against the teacher and the school, Tagore loses value and is rendered obsolete.The larger community must take a decisive stand for the core value of education that will become the foundation of our future. This core value lies in reviving the teacher and taught relationship and allowing it to blossom into the flowering that it deserves.
With the world spiralling into a headlong free fall towards anarchy and violence, we need to ponder the very basis of all education, the teacher -taught relationship . On second thought , maybe this is not the moment to ignore Tagore, but revisit the 'guru' of the times bygone and find the path to future through our own past.
Mrs. Meeta Khanna
Head of the Department ( English)
Mira Model School ,
Janakpuri, New Delhi