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Architects of the Nation

By Uma Purkayastha
Teachers are the main architects of the nation. Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, the second President of Independent India, and one of the most eminent philosophers and teachers of the world, said, “No subject is dull or hard if the teacher is not dull or hard”. He also said, “Our educational institutions are devoid of all cheers and joy; and therefore, whatever a teacher does must be with a song in his heart to rejoice in the noble mission of teaching”.
As a great educational reformer, his theory was that, a teacher should try to equalize his mind and soul with that standard of the children, whom he teaches; and read their mind, their likings and dislikings etc to make teaching effective.
Rabindranath Tagore, who was also a great educational reformer, said, “So long the teachers cannot create a joyful eagerness in the students’ mind, teaching will be unsuccessful; and it will be only imposition of some subjects on the children’s brain which will never help them in their mental development.”
He always preached for liberty in education, as he felt from his own experience during his childhood. He became a school dropout at the age of 13 due to heavy pressure of rude rules and bindings of schools which had kept him imprisoned within the stone walls of lessons and punishment.
He said, “Due to excessive; pressure of learning multipurpose subjects, and fear of punishment, the children always feel tensed; and become vicitim of mental imbalance.
They become abnormally rude and peevish, and revolt in trifling matters. Though they learn something, and become educated; but at the cost of their spontanous gayness and simplicity of childhood.”
So it is a necessary quality of the teachers to make the teaching atmosphere joyous to attract the students to be eager to know something new. But practically we find, loud scolding, and merciless beatings etc are the handy tools of most of the teachers, which could help some students’ reach the top but could have blunting effect on many; and increase the number of school dropouts.
The educational reformers, time to time, raised their voice against such punishment, and explained how do the children suffer from fear psychosis, to go to school, because of such terrible punishment. Not only physical punishment, sometimes mental harassment by the teachers creates more phobia among the students which results school dropouts.
A teacher’s responsibility is not only to teach the lessons of the school curriculum, but to lead the children towards advancement and development of their mind through innovative processes.
A good teacher can mesmerize even the delinquent children, like a magician, with his wonderful wand of skilled teaching. Where the parents fail, the teacher succeds, if he can deal the child psychologically and sympathetically.
Many dedicated teachers are there in the private schools, rendering sincerest service to the students, but in the old age when they retire from service, they leave with empty hands.
The Teachers’ Day celebration by the government will be more significant if the teachers’ community as a whole gets benefits like monthly pension and medical allowances after retirement. And that will be the best tribute to the Great Teacher, Dr. Sarvapally Radhakrishnan, whose birthday is celebrated as Teachers’ Day.

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