Board Exams 2020-21: Teachers worried about slow learners

MADURAI: Most private and government-aided schools have been conducting online classes or video lessons for students of classes X and XII but the teachers remain apprehensive about the students’ preparations. Even though the students have been attending online classes for a few months now, teachers are worried, especially with slow learners.

“Students who are toppers and study systematically will be able to pick up from the video lessons. But for teachers, the challenge will always be with the slow learners. Some need a push from teachers and they won’t even seek our help if they don’t understand something. For such students, we will be able to give one-on-one focus only when school reopens,” said K Laxmanan, a maths teacher for Class XII.

The teachers said that they have been monitoring the students’ performance while going ahead with the online classes. “Teachers are now closely monitoring students and how they perform. We are asked to check if students are asking questions and also see if students are answering our questions. Tests are also being conducted during online classes so that students can be evaluated to get an idea of how well they are learning,” said T Uma, a science teacher for Class X from a private school.

Another drawback due to schools being shut is that the students are unable to focus on practical work, which helps in scoring easy marks. “For many students, practical work is their lifeline. Especially for slow learners, we train them from the beginning of the term in practical work so that they can get the minimum marks to clear the exams. Only when schools reopen, we can start that,” said Uma.

For government school teachers, on the other hand, it is an uphill task this year to prepare students for board exams. “We are doing our best to help the students with the preparations. Teachers have created WhatsApp groups for every subject and are giving assignments every day for classes X and XII. Some students are submitting their homework and are responding to tests we give. However, we are not able to cover all students, even those with smart phones and internet connectivity. We are hoping for schools to reopen soon,” said the headmaster of a government higher secondary school.

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