Beyond the classroom

Beyond the classroom

Beyond the classroom

These days, parents and teachers are busy urging children to finish their homework and attend tuitions, demanding that they study at least four hours a day. All of this is keeping in mind the golden goal of a perfect score at the end of the year.

However, there are a few pointers that are often ignored, and even looked down upon, in the foreboding years of the all-important board exams. Metrolife talks to college students who emphasise the importance of extracurricular activities to give themselves a break from the monotony of studying, at the same time giving them an opportunity to pursue their interests. Oh yes, and build up that application for university.

Be it literary, athletic or cultural, extracurricular activities –– these things cannot be learnt in a classroom.

Student Shalini Rajan reminisces about how taking active interest in Model United Nations helped her make decision to pursue a career in journalism.

“I realised my passion for politics and current affairs, things that are out there in the world around you, not in the classrooms. This shaped my career choice and was truly a life-changing experience for me,” she says. She also loves the opportunities she gets to travel within, and outside, the country for Model United Nations.

Now that schools and colleges are recognising the need for students to pursue non-academic activities, they have started giving them more leeway to follow their interests. Branching out from the conventional curriculum of pure academics, promoting sports teams, drama clubs and bands have become an essential priority of schools.

Footballer Akshay Raman is grateful for such opportunities. Akshay describes how sports are an important part of his life, besides mere recreation. “Playing (football) helps me maintain a healthy lifestyle and keeps my body in sync with my mind.” He adds that the competitive nature of the sport has given him the confidence of a go-getter. “Now I can stand up and face a tough situation when I come across one.”

Guitarist Ajay Joseph describes how playing the guitar for his band keeps his life from being monotonous.

“I am extremely passionate about music,” he says. “It’s a great way to spend my time when I’m not studying.” “Besides, he adds, “Coordinating with all the members and picking up on each other’s cues teaches me how to work well with others on the spot.”

“Gone are the days when all that is expected of a student is an above-90 score,” says Shalini. She adds, “Colleges today are looking for interactive, well-groomed students, who can contribute to the spirit of the university, not only as an institution for learning, but also as a place for the all-round progress of each individual student.”