T.Prabhakar Rao – English Teacher – O. P. Jindal School -Tamnar
T. Prabhakar Rao is at the PGT- English (HOD- English) position at O. P. Jindal School which operates under the aegis of Jindal Power Limited, Tamnar. Rao has been teaching at this CBSE School since 2017. He has the experience of more than 16 years teaching English to Senior Secondary classes in schools of repute.
Why did you choose English as your subject?
The rich literature of English has always been my field of interest since I was in class XII. I would like to mention the name of Mr N.C. Choudhury, the source of inspiration for me, was my teacher who taught me English during the last year of my school life. The way he spoke in English, the pronunciation and the interest with which he used to teach us literature, was always fascinating and motivating to me. I remember, before Mr Choudhury started teaching us, I was not much interested in English subject. It was boring for me. I used to avoid the English teacher and go to the back benches in that period. One such day, when I was sitting in the back bench and doing the work of the other subject, Mr Choudhury saw me from the window. After that period, he called me to his room and enquired about. I told him clearly, “Sir, please don’t take it otherwise but English is a bit boring for me and I am worried about my Core subjects of Science. But you don’t worry; I will get good marks in English”. And with a smile on his face, he simply said, “No dear, I am not worried for your marks in English, in fact, marks are not at all a criterion for real learning of any literature or language. Rather interest, involvement & enjoyment in this subject are more important. That’s why I want to see you take interest in English. That is my point of concern.”
He asked me whether I was interested in watching movies, listening to music and acting. I said, “Yes, I am”. Then, with a triumphant smile, he said. “Fine, next year I’ll teach you English and I am pretty sure, you will enjoy the literature.” How correct he was! He taught me English in the last year of my school life and his influence was so powerful upon me that finally after Class XII, I changed my stream from Science to Humanities and opted for English literature for my University education.
What techniques do you use to improve the English skills of your students?
I use certain techniques variably to enhance the vocabulary of my students –
1. I advise them to converse always in complete sentences, avoid short response. Reading fiction, Reading news papers regularly, using new words & phrases in conversation and while writing answers.
2. Teaching pronunciation while Model Reading and Imitation reading
3. Playing different games like – Word games, Scrabble or Crosswords, Hot Seat and many more.
5. Extempore in the class
6. Debate and group discussion
7. Story telling
8. Asking students to explain the same thing in different ways
9. Asking about a certain thing by giving them Visual/ Verbal cues
10. Giving them the training to use the dictionary effectively
11. Putting questions based on Newspaper reports/ TV News and many other ways based on the situation.
Is the purpose of education to train students to get a good job?
In the present context, we can say that the purpose of education is to strengthen the mind of the students to accept the real challenges of life & to face them boldly in different situations and make them deliver their best in every situation. At the same time, we need to instill the morals and values in the budding minds. Education does not mean simply filling up the mind with a lot of information and reproducing the same at the time of exam or test.
In the words of Martin Luther King Jr. – “…education which stops with efficiency may prove the greatest menace to society. The most dangerous criminal may be the man gifted with reason but no morals. … We must remember that intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education.
What are all the hindrances that take the joy out of being a teacher today?
Every year a good number of teachers either flee from their job or change their organizations, employers, in search of suitable salary, position, security, respect, and conducive environment. The significant number of ‘bad/ under qualified teachers’ who cling on to their profession, position and institution is equally worrying. Some reasons are:
(i) Low salary
(ii) Long working hours
(iii) Lack of required respect& a dignified life, especially in such schools where bossism rule overhead.
(iv) Exploitation of teachers and not giving them the position they deserve
(v) Lack of support for enhancement of learning atmosphere.
(vi) The tendency of making the teachers ‘busy’ instead of getting the quality work out of them
(vii) Fixing all the accountability of teachers only for every failure and downfall
(viii) Making the teachers responsible for all omission & commission‘without any real authority’
(ix) The craze for ‘technology’, neglecting the values and humanitarian approach
(x) Unnecessary duplication of work
(xi) Over populated class spoils the very essence of teaching learning.
(xii) Authorities, Parents, Community everyone behaves as they know better than you, how to do your job
(xiii) Obsession for testing and for giving high score results only
(xiv) Bound to follow the fixed curriculum, methods, limited time, testing pattern and ‘typed’ system
(xv) Negative image/ reports more highlighted by media rather than the sacrifice and contribution of teachers
I have personally heard some talented young men saying that they want to be a teacher, but not in the existing system. It just shows that the system needs to be improved. Still, I see a silver line as some schools have taken the complaints positively and they are bringing reform in their system to ensure maximum possible satisfaction for the teachers. We can hope that in future many positive changes will take place in all the schools, in the mindset of stakeholders and in governance to attract a good number of talented people for the teaching profession and to make the profession joyful.
School Contact Details:
O. P. Jindal School
(Under the Aegis of Jindal Power Limited, Tamnar)
P. O. – Urja Nagar, Tamnar 496108
Distt. – Raigarh (Chhattisgarh)
Ph No: +91-7770846814,09669625695.