Ashwinkumar, B Rama. (1999). A Study of the Community as a Learning Center for School Students. Unpublished. Ph.D., Education. Shivaji University.
The objectives of the study were: (1) To analyze the content of standards VI and VII textbook of the compulsory subjects and identify concepts related to the community used for teaching learning. (2) To identify the community resources in Kolhapur city that can provide learning experiences to school students. (3) To associate appropriate learning activities with community resources for the identified concepts for standards VI and VII based on the developmental stages as propounded by Piaget. (4) To find out the extent to which the community resources are used by students from standards VI and VII subject-wise and how they are used. (5) To find out the extent to which the community resources are used by subject teachers from standards VI and VII subject-wise and how they are used. (6) To compare the extent to which students and teachers of standards VI and VII use the community resources subject-wise for learning and teaching. (7) To suggest various uses of community resources available in Kolhapur city in the teaching learning process for standards VI and VII subject-wise. (8) To suggest appropriate learning activities for standards VI and VII based on Piagetian Developmental Theory. (9) To find out if there is any difference in the use of community centers for teaching and learning due to a time lapse.
Out of these sixty-three schools were aided and seventeen schools were non-aided. For the purpose of this study the non-aided schools were deleted. Out of the 63 aided schools, 38 Marathi medium co-educational schools having standards 5 to 10th formed the population of the study. Out of these, 26% schools were selected randomly. Thus the sample comprised 10 schools. Data were collected from all students of standards VI and VII and concerned teachers of the 10 selected schools.
The tools used were: The Q.C.L.C. (Questionnaire Community as a Learning Center) was prepared and validated by the investigator separately for each of the compulsory subjects of standards VI and VII. It was administered to students of standards VI and VII to identify the use of community resources in learning and interview schedule.
The present study was of the survey type. It was descriptive in nature. (1) Content analysis of standards VI and VII of seven compulsory subject textbooks was undertaken to identify concepts which could be effectively taught and learned by using the community resources. (2) The Kolhapur city was surveyed to identify the community resources available for teaching and learning the identified concepts for standards VI and VII.
The data were analyzed with the help of percentage and graphs.
The findings of the study were: (1) Through content analysis the identified concepts were 23 concepts in Marathi; 26 concepts in Hindi; 4 skills and 44 learning activities in English; 15 concepts in History; 23 concepts in Geography; 18 concepts in Mathematics; and 19 concepts in Science. (2) Through content analysis undertaken of seven main subjects of standard VII textbooks of compulsory subjects, the number of concepts where community resources could be effectively used for teaching and learning were 24 concepts in Marathi; 13 concepts in Hindi; 4 skills and 28 learning activities in English; 29 concepts in History; 16 concepts in Geography; 18 concepts in Mathematics; and 25 concepts in Science. (3) The identified educational place of community and its resources for educational purposes to make teaching learning process were more effective. (4) The community in which the schools existed was found to constitute a valuable educational laboratory filled with resources to strengthen and enrich learning at the standards VI and VII. (5) The community resources for standard VI identified subject-wise were 26 for Marathi; 32 for Hindi; 44 for English; 50 for History; 28 for Geography; 36 for mathematics; and 43 for science. (6) The community resources for standard VII identified subject-wise were 39 for Marathi; 35 for Hindi; 18 for English; 63 for History; 38 for Geography; 36 for Mathematics; and 86 for Science. (7) For achieving knowledge about any subject for standards VI and VII only reading, writing and counting were not sufficient as they did not provide students necessary experience about the subject. Therefore teachers must provide various experiences using community resources. (8) Teachers provided students in standards VI and VII some learning experiences based on the concepts identified through educational trips etc. However, Formal Operational stage for standard VI or Concrete Operational stage for standard VII were not taken into consideration by teachers while planning such learning activities. (9) The students were found to have indulged themselves in common hobbies, like, reading, cricket etc. They read books which were only available in schools. They did not try to relate the subject content or text matter with the social or community in which they lived. This may be because the teachers did not relate their teaching to the life situations. (10) In case of languages, like, Marathi and Hindi, students were found to like reading, but were not members of any library. Besides the use of dictionary to improve their language, students did not know any other source. (11) In Mathematics, students failed to relate their studies to the community resources available, like, banks, post offices, clubs, shops, etc. (12) In Science subject, students were very well acquainted with plants/animals and their use in daily life situations, but they were unaware of the community resources available in Kolhapur city pertaining to above topics. (13) Only 2.6% of students of standard VII visited the post offices for collecting information. Historical serials telecasted on TV were used to maximum extent while learning History. Only 0.4% of students used maps to show the explanation of different empires and to fix their borders. Only 2% of students tried to find out three important periods of History and the incidents that took place in Kolhapur during that period. Only 0.8% of students of standard VII received practical experience of mathematical concepts, like, Commission’, rebate’, simple interest’, etc. only after they were taught them in mathematical classroom. 1.4% of students of standard VII made use of agricultural college to collect information about farming, whereas 1.8% saw traditional farming in village. 92.4% of students collected information about farming from TV through the programs, like, Amachi Mati Amachi Manase’. Students were found not to participate in students’ forum or read science news bulletins, or write for them. Not a single student was found to have attended literary conferences’ meant for children. Teachers did not encourage the students to attend such literary conferences. Students did not observe with a definite purpose the incidents that take place in the society. (14) Subject teachers were found of encourage students only to use the school library for additional or supplementary information. Students were not encouraged by the teachers to use the community libraries. (15) No conscious efforts were made by subject teachers to use particular community resources while teaching the identified concepts from different subjects. (16) English teachers with over 15 years of teaching experience did not use any community resources for teaching English. However teachers between 5-7 years of teaching experience used community resources to the maximum while teaching English. (17) Community resources were used abundantly while teaching science. However gardens, new palace, zoo, Agriculture College, Department of Botany in Shivaji University etc. were not found to be used at all. (18) Teachers did not provide students with definite and detailed plan regarding the use of a particular community social experience as related to a definite concept. (19) Teachers did not encourage students to use community resources persons/experts as a source of knowledge. They were not made aware of an art of drawing-out information required from such experts. (20) There was a positive correlation between the positive responses given by the VI and VII standard students for all the seven main subjects. The lowest numbers of community resources were used in English by the students of both the standards whereas maximum community resources were used in Marathi. (21) The community resources, like, Department of Historical Evidences, Archaeological Department of Kolhapur were not used in learning-teaching process of History. The community resources, like, police station, court etc. were not used in the teaching-learning process. Less use of community resources was made while learning-teaching the subjects Marathi, Hindi, Social Science as compared to Science, Mathematics and English. Although, Kolhapur city has historical background but community resources were not used sufficiently by students and teachers for learning and teaching purpose. Both teachers and students were found to have made maximum use of (97.2%) community resources while teaching-learning geometrical shapes in mathematics. Very little use of community resources was made in teaching-learning process of geography. No Geography teacher was found to have given comparative questions pertaining to Kolhapur and other geographical area. (22) There was no considerable difference in the use of community centers for teaching by teachers due to time lapse.
Keyword(s): Community, Learning Center,