Happy Teachers’ Day 2017

Happy Teachers' Day poster. Image courtesy: desicomments.com

Today is yet another special occasion to remember and honor those beautiful souls who have taught us how to read and write, and to distinguish between what is wrong and right. We all are the direct products of sacrifices made by our teachers who have committed their entire life to show us the path that has led us where we are now. Had it not been for their selfless contributions and hard work, we would have never got the inner vision of our life. They are the ones who have ignited our imaginations and dreams, and instilled in us the love of learning. Every teacher often goes beyond his or her prescribed role to support and guide the students onto the right path. It is absolutely true that if a teacher fails, the entire society fails. Looking at our own successes today, it is clear that none of our teachers has ever failed.

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Inclusive curriculum is key to the success of inclusive education

Photo of blind children reading braille books. Image courtesy: Muenselling Institute's website

We have been lately talking about inclusive education in Bhutan and some of the schools have already been modified to accommodate children with varying abilities in the same learning environment. But no matter how accessible the general infrastructures of the school might be, or how well trained are the teachers dealing with students with special needs, I think the goal of inclusive education cannot be achieved if the school curriculum is not inclusive. When we talk about inclusive education, people mostly think about only accessible physical infrastructures within the school campus and disabled-friendly facilities and services. But we have never thought of the curriculum which is the backbone of formal education system in the country. I feel that our school curriculum is very rigid at the moment. We are expected to learn what is prescribed in the textbooks and not what we are good at or what we love doing. When the curriculum is developed, the needs of persons with disabilities especially the visually impaired children are never considered. As a result, the curriculum is largely visual-based and hence, the visually impaired children are deprived of the opportunity to participate equally in the classroom.

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How television can be bad for children

Television has become an integral part of our life at home today. It has become so ubiquitous across the globe that it is hard to imagine life without it. Nowadays, most of us have at least two to three television sets at home. The advent of television era has definitely changed the world and how we view it. While television has opened our door to the outside world, it comes with both necessary and unnecessary channels. Just with the point and the click of a button, the viewing options are endless. There are literarily hundreds of channels to choose from. Cartoons, cooking shows, news and other entertainment shows fill up the airwaves. With so many channels available to turn to, choosing the appropriate channels especially for children is increasingly becoming a concern. Some studies have indicated that television is bad for children since it often promotes violence and aggression, be it through cartoons or movies.

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Remembering my teachers on Teachers’ Day

Happy Teachers' Day. Poster courtesy: Google

If the future of a nation is decided inside a classroom, we all know who are the extraordinary souls behind this entire process of creating a better world for all of us to live in. Today is the special day for us to honor and salute our selfless teachers for their immense contributions to the society by making us what we are today. Many teachers who have taught me have gone beyond their prescribed role to equip me with even those skills and knowledge outside the textbooks. I have realized that anybody can explain what is written in a book but teachers often have to walk extra miles to nurture us and guide us onto the right path. So on this auspicious occasion, I would like to remember from the core of my heart all the teachers who have really made a difference in my life.

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My youngest son leaves the comfort of his home behind to start a new journey of his life

Photo of my youngest son Rigden Subba in his school campus on his first school day

There is a wave of excitement in my family as my youngest son Rigden Subba began his much-awaited academic journey since yesterday. Till now he has been his mother’s best companion at home, living with full of childish innocence and smiles. So the first day was certainly a strange experience for him. Although he had promised that he would not cry in school as his elder brother had done on his first day in school four years ago, it seems he did silently shed some tears on the way back home yesterday. I am sure he must have felt very strange in that new environment. For now, my wife is giving him company in the school, waiting for him all day and helping him have lunch or go to toilet during the intervals. He has been told that after a while, he has to be alone and that his mother will only come to get him home after the school hours. He has accepted this upcoming ordeal that he has to face. I am sure he will soon learn to be independent especially after he gets familiar with the environment and his friends. The problem with him right now is that he is normally a silent boy and that he doesn’t easily mingle with others. So, most of the time, it seems he is seen alone in the classroom. But with the passage of time, I hope he would gain some confidence to open up and interact with others.

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Five things you are not taught in school

Photo of students studying English subject in a school in Paro. Image courtesy: Google.

Our school curriculum is mostly academic-based and the textbooks contain only theories and logic which are not always applicable in our daily life. In addition to geography, history, science, economics and language studies, there are many things we need to know which are equally important for our success and wellbeing. But sadly, it seems we are missing them in our school curricula today. I may not be absolutely right but I feel following are some of the things we should learn while we are in the school in addition to existing subjects.

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Happy Teachers’ Day 2015

Happy Teachers' Day. Image source: Google.

Today as we celebrate the birth anniversary of our third king late Jigme Dorji Wangchuck, the father of modern Bhutan, it is also a special day for all of us in Bhutan to remember the divine architects of this nation’s future: our beloved teachers and acknowledge the selfless contributions and sacrifices they have made to make us what we are today. I believe teachers are like candles. They consume themselves to light up the world of others. I strongly believe that it requires a lot of passion, commitment, dedication, love and patience to become a true teacher.
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A big lesson for parents whose children go to school

Photo of my two school-going children

18th December is the annual Judgment Day for students throughout Bhutan. It’s a big day for both students and their parents because this is the day which all of us have been anxiously waiting for. It’s the day on which our children who go to school harvest the outcome of their year-long hard-work and struggle and it’s the day for parents to find out whether what they have invested in their children’s education for one year has borne any fruit. After all, it’s the day which decides the next move of our children. But if you are not cautious enough, a small typing error on the results sheet of your child, which the school authorities attribute to the computer, can mar the academic performances of your child.
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