It is important to remind ourselves about the aim of educating our children. It must be to develop ethical intellectual character. Every learner must have a thriving curiosity, which makes one question their present existence and everything about it. They must possess a fair sense of judgment that allows them to differentiate the right from the wrong, and the decision-making ability to take a stand based on this judgment. Every learner must take an initiative and have the resilience to carry on. This should be followed by an ability to reflect, to ponder over what is required to improve on one’s actions. A sense of self is imperative in order to continue with convictions in one’s actions even if others don’t believe or support them. And empathy is required so that one can initiate actions beneficial to others.
Once our young minds are educated, they must be ready to make a difference in the world. They must be ready to change society, for the better, through intelligent and responsible action.
They must learn to live responsibly, respecting other people and cooperating with them, and with all the living organisms on the planet. They must learn to respect other people and their cultures and value systems; become capable of encountering others and resolving conflicts through dialogue; and attempt to achieve competency in working towards common objectives.
We must, therefore, engage our young minds intellectually and socially, empowering them to take their own place in an ever-changing world, through enquiry and reflection upon social and global issues independently as well as collaboratively.
The only way to teach them this is by exposing them to the real world: the world beyond classrooms, books and school; the world where our students learn by doing and not just by listening and seeing.
During this process they will develop the qualities which will help them acquire the ability to work in a team, along with the strategic use of knowledge to resolve problems and make rational decisions. They will also learn to take risks as well as initiative. And thus use well-meaning and well thought-out action to change society.
It is then that our education will have produced social citizens who understand their responsibility not just towards themselves, not only to the whole of mankind but towards all living beings.
Young minds who are ready to move into the world with a goal to make this world a peaceful and a much better place to live in.