PANEL DISCUSSION ON ‘CREATING A SAFE, CARING AND RESPECTFUL CLASSROOM ENVIRONMENT’
On 28th July, 2010, Delhi Public School, R.K.Puram held a Panel Discussion on ‘Creating a safe, caring and respectful Classroom environment’. The event, a DPS Society initiative, was coordinated and anchored by two teachers, Ms. Niva Chhonkar and Ms. Shailesh Bhandari. The panel consisted of some distinguished teachers, namely Ms. Deepa Raghavan, former Vice Principal ,DPS, R.K.Puram, Ms.Vanita Sehgal, Headmistress, Ms. Archana Pental, Head of Political Science Department, Ms. Prema Pandey, Events Coordinator, and Ms Etishree Bhati, the School Counselor. The panel also consisted of parents such as Dr.Saveena Raheja, Ms.Mini Raheja, Ms.Mallika Garg, Ms.Neelima Gupta and Ms.Savita Kokhar, along with a number of students.
The Vice Principals, Mrs.Shobha Mehta and Dr. R.G. Verma started the programme by welcoming everyone and presenting the panelists with tokens of appreciation. The discussion started with Behaviour Management of students in the classroom, the issue of disruptive children and how the teachers can ensure effective teaching while dealing with children in such circumstances. The consensus on this question was mainly to let students settle down in the first few minutes and then have an uninterrupted teaching session. Issues like the possibility of laying down ground rules for children and steps to ensure effective teaching in classrooms were discussed. The discussion moved on to the use of foul language in school and the increasing use of social networking sites which may be detrimental for the students. The students deliberated on foul language being termed as ‘cool’ and the school counselor, Ms. Etishree Bhati talked about the children’s psyche and the reasons behind this trend.
An interactive session took place, wherein the audience proposed questions to the panelists. Many of the questions were regarding the freedom of students, home coaching and incessant pressure from parents regarding academic performance. It was felt that teachers should be more interactive and break the monotony of classes and both parents and teachers should serve as role models for the students. The importance of inculcating positive behavior and accountability of their actions in students to help them make informed choices, was highlighted.
All in all, it was a very enriching experience for the students, one that would help them focus and realize the importance of Classroom learning.