Integrating culture with academics

Students' development

Schools work in achieving the necessary balance between academic and cultural development of the students.

It is the priority of these institutions to make sure that students do well in all fields. In a country like India, with so much cultural, religious and historical diversity, it is important to include this in the life of a child and the best time to start is from the primary level itself.

The school syllabus should include the means for the cultural development of the students. Bharati Krishnamoorthy, Principal of Deccan International School, says, “Cultural events are a source of joy for all of us, especially for children and parents. Such events bring children and teachers together; they get to know each other better and this strengthens the bond of togetherness for the entire school. They are of immense value since they give the students an opportunity to showcase their talents.”

In metropolitan cities like Bangalore, there are so many different communities living together.  In the schools also, children from different parts of the country come together to study.

Opportunities to participate in such programmes widen the knowledge of skills and increase confidence. It makes them aware of the rich heritage of our country and the culture of each region and society in India. It also instills the feeling of patriotism apart from developing sensitivity towards other nations and their cultures.

Music and dance are an integral part of every school’s syllabus; from the primary classes, song and dance are the first instances of cultural education that a child takes in. K M Veena, music teacher of Innisfree House School agrees, “A child should be taught music and other cultural aspects so as to ensure a complete education at school. It is necessary to teach children songs in different languages so that there is a proper cultural balance.”

For a student to participate in cultural programmes, the choices are endless. S Bolar, Principal of Innisfree House School and who is also a part of the ICSE board, says, “Apart from music and dance; art and craft, theatre and languages are also very important aspects of a child’s cultural learning. Children of all ages should be able to learn these. Indian schools do not balance the two very efficiently; both education and culture should be given equal status in the development of a child from the early years itself.”

Apart from stage performances, schools also make provision for students to learn various languages. The incorporation of different languages in the syllabus is vital for students as this will enable them to be fluent and linguistically diverse.

The concept of art and craft itself has a wide array of options. Children can choose between painting, drawing, origami and needle-work. Apart from these, literary events and excursions to historical and cultural places of interest are also beneficial for the students.
Parents are also enthusiastic about their children’s participation in cultural events. With the inculcation of culture and academics, the talent and potential of children are brought out, which will eventually result in developing their personality.

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