New Delhi: A five-year-old child should be able to count numbers up to 10, use comparative words like heavier/lighter appropriately, and write their first name, according to the latest guidelines issued by the education ministry.
The ministry sent the guidelines, which are an updated roadmap for the “implementation of Samagra Shiksha scheme”, to all states last week. Samagra Shiksha is a flagship school education scheme of the Union government that includes interventions for improving the quality of education and infrastructural facilities in schools.
In order to improve the quality of education, learning outcomes in terms of basic literacy and numeracy have been revised. According to the government document, different outcomes have been mentioned for — “oral language”, “reading”, “writing” and “numeracy” according to different age groups ranging from five to nine years.
The document also outlines ways to achieve the learning outcomes, which include — teaching children in a way that is linked to the daily life situations and their environment, area, culture, language, ethnicity and gender etc.
For example, children should be encouraged to read the written word, wherever it is available. Whether it is a school’s name board, a bus stand name and number, advertisements, hoardings, wall slogans, writings on packaged goods, newspapers, TV programmes, etc.
Other methods include a section-wise, targeted approach, which will have age-appropriate learning.
The guidelines also say that the assessment should be “holistic” and a “Holistic Progress Card” should be given to children instead of a regular one simply with marks. The report card should “report many unique competencies which are not just academic” and skills like painting, drawing, clay-work, toy-making, projects and inquiry-based learning, student portfolios, quizzes, group work, role plays and more should be used to assess a student’s progress.
Pre-school children aged between five to six years should be able to — talk to friends and teachers, sing rhymes/poems with understanding, look at books and attempt to read the story with the help of pictures, point out and recognise some familiar repeated words.
They should also be able to read simple words comprising of at least two to three alphabets, scribble/draw and paint for self-expression, use a pencil and hold it properly to form recognisable letters and be able to recognise and write their own first name, according to the government guidelines.
First graders, those in the age group of 6-7 years, should be able to — write or draw things to convey meaning and represent names on their worksheet, count objects up to 20, read and write numbers up to 99, use addition and subtraction of numbers up to nine in daily life situations and be able to observe and describe physical properties of solid shapes around them like round/flat surfaces, number of corners and edges etc. They should also be able to estimate length and capacity using non-standard methods like footstep, fingers, cup, spoon etc.
A child in second grade or in the age group of seven to eight should be able to — use spatial vocabulary like far/near, in/out, above/below, left/right, front/behind, top/bottom etc and create and solve simple riddles using numbers and shapes, the guidelines say.
Third graders, or those between ages eight and nine, should be able to — identify a particular date and corresponding day on a calendar and read time on a clock in hours and half-hours, write short messages for different purposes and use action words, name words and punctuation marks for writing, and write grammatically correct sentences.
(Edited by Theres Sudeep)