Srinagar: A day after Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha assured a policy in 48 hours to ease the burden of homework on school children, the administration on Tuesday came out with fresh guidelines limiting daily online classes to half-an-hour for pre-primary students and 90 minutes for primary and middle students.
The guidelines came within 24 hours of Mr Sinha’s directions to the school education department to come out with a policy in 48 hours after a video of a six-year-old girl went viral on social media in which she appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ease the burden of homework.
“The school education department has decided to limit daily online classes for a maximum one and half hours for class 1 to 8, spread across two sessions. For class 9 to 12 online synchronous learning will not be more than 3 hours,” the L-G said on his official Twitter handle.
He said in the case of the pre-primary students, the interaction with their teachers on a given day shall be only of half-an-hour and also asked the teachers to avoid assigning homework to students of classes up to 5.
“Concerned authorities to ensure the strict implementation. Homework up to class 5th should be avoided. Authorities and schools should plan joyful learning experience engaging parents as well,” he said in another tweet.
Mr Sinha said the children need more time to play and interact with parents which is “the biggest learning experience a child can have”.
In the fresh guidelines for classes 1-2, the teachers have been asked to plan joyful learning experiences for digital/online learning as in the case of face-to-face classes.
“Daily life experiences must be shared for enhancing their competency. Give interesting assignments to children such as listening, and reading, stories followed by activities like drawing inferences, adding/changing the climax at the end, picture reading, art and craft, puzzles, simple observation projects, learning new words etc,” the guidelines issued by Principal Secretary, School Education Department, BK Singh, said.
The teachers have also been asked to occasionally organise brief and casual meetings with the parents and children through video conferencing and give them a chance to narrate their feelings and experiences.
“Encourage the parent to document the child’s work through a photo or a short video in order to stay connected to the child’s early learning experience without making it stressful or going for rote learning. Guide parents regarding monitoring TV program viewing, about what cartoons/programs are being watched by children,” the guidelines said.
For the senior students, the teachers have been asked to give 10-15 minutes break between two consecutive classes for the students to freshen up, relax and re-energise themselves to focus on the next class.
“Encourage peer discussion and interaction during online classes,” they said.