Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir, Chikhalgaon
Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir is an open school where all the students from the school are in single classroom. It is a one room school house.
The primary section consists of 26 students of standards 1st to 4th. All these students learn under one roof. You may see students of 4th standards teaching students of first and second standards.
Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir is first of its kind in Maharashtra, which focuses on various games for learning languages and mathematics.
This primary school at a small village in Chikhalgaon, situated in Ratnagiri district also conducts various cultural programs. The school students keep their school bags in the school itself. Since their parents are uneducated, these students barely get any guidance at home. Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidya Mandir takes complete responsibility of these students. They are not given any homework. All the teachers personally get the work done from the kids. Personal attention is provided irrespective of the number of students.
It started as “experimental school” on 1st August 1994 and soon was imparting life skill to the students. Loksadhana’s Primary School is special in many ways. The primary school is equipped with all the important learning material. Open Classrooms, free education, bag less school, learning while playing method are some of many features of Primary School. It has always been the effort of our primary school staff to study various educational experiments happening all over the globe and provide the students with new opportunities.
The morning session mainly consists of academic studies. The afternoon session consists of language studies. Last one hour of school is dedicated to various games and play time.
The teacher makes different groups based on the intelligence levels and abilities of the students. Special attention is given to the students who are lagging behind in studies. The note books are corrected in the presence of the students so that the mistakes can be explained to them and they can avoid similar mistakes in future. The teacher ensures that the student has understood the topic completely.
One of the biggest hurdle in innovation in education is not lack of competent teachers, or even access to necessary tools, it is the attitude of the school authority. The founders of Lokmanya Tilak Primary school, Dr Raja Dandekar and Renu Dandekar have always been zealous about educational innovation. They have always attempted to rethink and improve pedagogical practices executed by Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir.
The primary school teachers at Lokmanya Tilak Prathmik Prashala are not confined to traditional teaching methods. They take the students on a journey of pure learning respond to their doubts and instil an environment of curiosity and interaction.
Since school cannot provide all the fancy resources, primary school teacher Mrs. Neelima Bhave makes use of ice cream sticks, cold drink caps, buttons, leaves, flowers to teach the students to count. She has used chart papers and the floor to design various board games related to different mathematical calculations- addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, English and Marathi letters, English and Marathi Spellings, forming sentences using words written etc.
The students of the primary school enjoy these games and never complain about the school. They are happy to attend the school which keeps attendance rates really high. There are absolutely no school dropouts here.
Though this school is located in a small village, it has adopted modern learning techniques such as Role Play, Peer Teaching, Mind games- Quiz, Puzzle-solving, Scrabble, Sudoku, snake and ladder with mathematical calculations etc and collaborative projects where students are motivated to plan, create and organise group presentation, sing various poems that will introduce them to new words, phrases and proverbs.
The primary school teacher, Mrs. Neelima Bhave teaches Sanskrit to the students. Students of 3rd and 4th standard can speak in Sanskrit, tell stories and talk few lines about themselves and also sing songs- all in Sanskrit. This is very necessary in the age where Sanskrit is being forgotten.
The teachers undertake various activities such as making mud objects, making decoration from grains, making rakhis, making wooden flowers etc.
The school children are also given access to a tablet which they can use to learn several subjects. This gives them introduction to modern devices. This is very essential as the kids in the village do not have easy access to such devices in their houses.
Mrs. Neelima Bhave has been teaching at Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir, Chikhalgoan since 2003. Principal Shri Nachnekar and Neelima she have taken immense efforts for the overall development and progress of the school children. Developing various activities such as Math Games, English Language games, songs, stories, cultural activities, environmental visits has helped the village kids to grasp all the knowledge in a fun loving way. Mrs. Neelima loves her job as a school teacher at Lokmanya Tilak Prathamik Vidyamandir.
The school children clean premises of the school and also undertake the tree plantation. Each student takes responsibility one tree planted by him/her at the time of admission till he/she passes out of school. Since Konkan area is conducive to Mango cultivation, mostly Mango trees are planted. These students can come, visit and eat fruits of their trees any time in future even after passing out.