Mr. Rajeev Gupta – PGT Physics Teacher – G.P.S Global School, Hapur
Interlinking of subjects gives more flavor, depth and meaning to subjects. The logical reasoning it brings along reinforces the concepts and makes learning fun and interesting. Physics reasoned out with Mathematics is Rajeev Gupta’s unique methodology. Mr. Rajeev is a PGT Physics teacher at G.P.S Global School.
“My interest in Physics lies in how best to teach Physics. Most of the teachers have made Physics into History subject. They make and give notes. But, Physics is understood best numerically.
Whatever derivation or topic you intend to teach should first be introduced using the concept and its relevance in the real world. Quote numerical examples to help children dive deeper. This approach can make a lot of difference in the way Physics is perceived by children.”
Where did you do your studies and what made you decide on making teaching your career?
My education was from the Allahabad University. Back then, most people aimed at getting into administrative posts. It was my statistics teacher who pointed out that I was good at Physics and suggested that I study Physics in depth. I then aimed at being a Physics professor. While doing my studies itself, I used to give private tuition and that made me incline even more towards this profession.
I have observed that most students want to learn Physics but they lacked teachers who presented it well. When I introduced them to the numerical way of learning Physics they started asking me more questions. That was a good sign. We started having healthy conversations based on Physics. Using their questions as base, I started doing my own in-depth studies. Using that I derived a methodology in teaching Physics from the basic to higher levels. In the process, I loved Physics even more and my interactions with students made me fall in love with teaching as well.
How long have you been in the teaching profession?
I began my career in 2000. I currently am an HOD at JPS Global Academy – a CBSE school at Hapur. I have also taught in ICSE and state board schools. I was teaching at Ghaziabad.
What are your thoughts on the CBSE, ICSE and State boards?
Most of the topics discussed in CBSE only starts from the upper level. They just introduce the topic with no preface. The content the board offers doesn’t delve into giving an insight about the topic. Hence, I do refer other books as well, when I teach.
Actually, the NCERT is made for delving deeper into topics. It is almost like research-level content. It is made in such a way that you can understand all concepts by yourself.
These books give ideas on how the formulae and concept is developed. They have sections called ‘Why?’ explaining how the concepts were developed. These books actually promote research and push people to think.
If one is able to go through all this content, NCERT books are really good. But, the catch is to develop a deep understanding you will need to consult other books too.
What is your approach to bring students weak in Physics on par with the others?
I teach Class XI and XII. This concept of weak students is a carry forward from the lower classes. For example, when we teach that Kinetic Energy K = 1/2 mv2, they do not understand the meaning of kinetic energy or potential energy etc.
So, I start by asking them questions. These questions are for me to understand what all they have read and what all they have understood. Doing this exercise sometimes gets me down to the 6th, 7th level too. When I get a feel that they have begun to understand then I pace up to grade 11 and 12. They struggle to understand but in the meantime, I make them do a lot of numerical analysis. Gradually, they start understanding.
To get to that level, I give them lot of numerical reasoning and conceptual understanding. Slowly they come up to speed. But then once they get it, we see a balance and then delve into advance concepts.
I do observe some students to be good at Humanities etc. but opting for Physics. They would have been forced by parents. In that case, they will have to work harder because they would hardly have any Mathematical idea.
Most people don’t understand that Mathematics is also a Science and that it transcends into Physics as well. I teach mathematical Physics.
Do you feel the pressure of ensuring that your students score high because you can be judged based on their scores?
Yes, I do. I feel the pressure because I have to give results. The attitude is no matter how your students are, you need to derive good results. If not, you will have to face dire consequences. In this commercial world, everything is dictated and judged based on results. Hence, I feel it is highly important that I start from the level that students understand and get them to speed.
For ensuring results, I have to also tell them what’s important from an exam point of view etc. and in some cases will have to advice that they write the answer as being told. I feel restless in my mind that that is not the right way to impart education. But, I have the reality also to face.
How would you define a bright Physics student?
A good student is one who shows the interest to delve deeper into concepts without any external pressure. There are many students that questions why they can’t think of concepts at a different angle altogether.
Many a times, they are right in their thoughts – whether it is about concepts or about the manner in which problems are solved. Bright students would be open to working on new problems and they don’t fear questions that appear to be something totally new.
You also train students for the NEET examination, right?
Is coaching for NEET different from the way in which you would teach Physics in a classroom?
Yes, there is a lot of difference. In class, the emphasis in usually on the derivation. In NEET, you have to delve deep into Physics topics. There is a lot of graphically conceptual questions, which require a lot of skilled training in terms of tangents, maxima and minima concepts. Due to lack of time, these cannot be discussed in a regular class.
Also, NEET follows an objective type question paper model which requires a different style of training altogether. So, the way in which we teach and prompt children who want to appear for NEET exams is very different.
What are your plans for the future?
I want to bring out my version of a Physics book – a book which details on concepts which can be easily understood. I want to create a bridge between lower level and higher level books.
Thank you, Mr Rajeev Gupta. We wish you all success!
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