Dump rote learning switch to practical learning with my webinars says the little author. Sets up science labs at orphanages.
"How many pages did you finish reading?", "How many sums did you solve?", "What was your score in the last descriptive test?", "What is your current rank in the class?", "How many diagrams did you finish practising?" - Huff! Students are often bombarded with questions like these. We barely come across teachers or parents who ask meaningful questions. "What new have you learnt today?", "Did you ask any good questions in school today?", "What have you observed while going to and coming back from school?", "How and why do you think the bulb glows?" - Aren't questions like these enriching? When students are given space to think, a chance to ask questions, time to look around and observe ; they get to learn everything from the happenings around them. What's written in the books gives them not more than a score card at the end of the academic year. But what's learnt from practical observations and experiments will take them a long way. Unfortunately, this is not understood by majority of the elders and they solely concentrate on their child's academic performance rather than intellectual growth. However, things began to change slowly. Children themselves are understanding the importance of practical learning and gone are those days when children didn't know what they wanted. Present day children observe, analyse and conclude what they want and very well do it. Of course, parents also have become flexible these days to understand and encourage their children. That's why we are seeing the growing number of child prodigies. Maharashtra's Arsha Saraf is one such child prodigy who has been advocating the benefits of practical learning since her childhood. A teenager now, this wonder girl has already set several records under her name for her outstanding contributions to the advocacy of practical learning.
An Inquisitive Child:
Arsha Anand Saraf is a Grade 8 student who was born in Wardha, Maharashtra. Her father, Anand Saraf, an MBA graduate, is an entrepreneur who is into Copper Sulphate manufacturing industry while her mother, Kavita Saraf, an MSC graduate, is an Educator. Born on 11th April 2009, Arsha goes to Channawar's E Vidyamandir School, Wardha. Like every other kid, Arsha's typical day consisted of going to school, coming back home, indulge in playing, pursuing her favourite hobby of drawing and then do some homework. Changes in her style of learning shifted from mere theoritical to practical when she first had her encounter with science practical work at school. When Arsha was preparing for her science practical exam in school, she loved the approach of testing in the lab, what was written in the textbook. She was impressed by the pragmatic approach of studying things. She slowly started to do her own experiments at home. More than the bookish knowledge, hands-on learning experience gave fulfillment to Arsha and she thought that real learning lies in practical approaches. Ever since then, she wanted to continue learning by doing and she also decided to tell her friends and other children the importance of empirical learning.
Let's Do The Non-theoritical Learning:
With an aim to spread the goodness of learning by doing and to make students understand the vitality of learning real-time, Arsha started a series of webinars under the name "Visualise Science". Through these webinars, she began to teach the concepts of science to children, giving them a practical approach. Her webinars were welcomed with great positivity and applause that she was motivated to do more. Just a pre-teen and she has already set a record for doing the maximum number of videos on science practicals.
Empathy For The Underprivileged:
Arsha used to visit orphanages with her parents since childhood. She used to distribute sweets and other eatables to the children there. But when she began to be inclined towards science and practical learning, she thought that there would be many people who distribute food and clothes to the orphanages but no one would gift them quality education. Children in orphanages, she thought, are deprived of their right to good education and this thought made her act further. Since then, she started to go to orphanages to teach them practical science and also distributed science kits among them. Age doesn't matter if you resolve to do something, isn't it?
Arsha, who says that her role model is her mother, has bagged several records for her exceptional contribution to the field of practical learning. In 2020, she secured place in the India Book of Records as the "Youngest to provide facility of free operational science laboratory". In 2021, she was honoured by the Asia Book of Records for being the "Youngest to provide facility of free operational science laboratory". The High Range Book of World Records recognised her as the "Youngest person to conduct most Webinars and Seminars on Science" in 2021. She was recognised as the 'Grand Master' for making the maximum number of videos on Science laboratory practicals by Asia book Records in 2021.
If we think that the girl has got so much recognition at such a tender age without any difficulties, then we're undoubtedly wrong. She has got her set of challenges. While lockdown acted as a barrier to carry out experiments sometimes, at other times materials were not available. However, she was persistent enough and remained consistent in her work without giving up. "Her consistent hard work and courage to accept challenges made her successful in her mission", said Kavita, Arsha's mother. Little Arsha also has penned a book titled "Experiments on Surface tension" which was launched in November 2020. Her second book is yet to be released.
Her Words Of Value:
Arsha, who has decided to donate five science laboratories to different orphanages, will go to five orphanages along with her parents and shall set up the labs. The project, her mother said, will start from 1st July, 2021. When asked about what advise she would like to give the present day world, without any fumbling or second thought, she emphasized on the importance of practical learning bashing the rote learning. "Learn the things practically instead of theoretically and help the others.", she said in her concluding statement.
What an amazing kid! It's very hard for children to realise the role of hands-on learning. They usually try to mug up from the books, vomit it on the answer sheets and get home glittering score cards. But Arsha believed in celebral treat in learning. We wish her a life filled with zeal, zinger and purpose.
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