In the National Curriculum Framework for School
Education-2000 (NCFSE - 2000), The Art of Healthy and
Productive Living has been introduced as a new subject.
This subject is a merger of three subjects in the previous
curriculum, namely, Work Experience, Art and Health
The aim of combining these three subjects is to provide
meaningful opportunities to children for their optimum all
round development. To reduce the curriculum load, it was
decided not to have any textbook for the subject. A Handbook
for teachers has, therefore, been developed. How the teacher
should present different activities for the children of
Classes I, II and III has been highlighted in this Handbook.
In this subject, the emphasis will be on activities which
will nurture positive human values in young children.
There are eight chapters in this Handbook which will
help the teachers to plan, organise and carryout the
activities in and out of school.
The first chapter introduces the concept and objectives
of the subject. In the second chapter, the challenges which
the teachers face in different situations have been discussed
in detail. The third chapter deals with some general
misconceptions teachers have about children and teaching.
Against this background, it becomes imperative to
understand children at the primary level. In the fourth
chapter, we have tried to give examples of joyful activities,
based on the background, developmental needs and interests
of children. Our understanding of children provides us with
an insight for organising activities more effectively. The
techniques for motivating children to take part in different
types of activities have been outlined in chapter five. The
participation of the community in the teaching-learning
process cannot be under -estimated and is essential in both
rural and urban schools. Soliciting co-operation from other
teachers, parents / community has been dealt in chapter six.
The seventh chapter focusses on the meaningful
implementation of activities. A number of core and optional
activities have been given as exemplar activities. Both types
of activities have been presented as examples only. It is
hoped that these exemples will equip the teachers to
understand the nature of the Art of Healthy and Productive
The last chapter emphasises the need for evaluation
and monitoring. The key role played by teachers, parents
and members of the community in the impartial evalution
the children's performance has been highlighted. The nature
of evaluation is different from the evaluation process
undertaken in other subjects. It will largely be based be
informal on observation without making the children,
parents and community conscious of it. This will constitute
a part of continuous comprehensive evaluation to monitor
the behavioural changes in children.
The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has developed a National Curriculum Framework for School Education – 2000 (NCFSE – 2000) in 2000, keeping in view the changing social and educational context in the country. In the new curriculum, along with other aspects, a deliberate attempt has been made to reduce the curriculum, load, and emphasis has been placed on joyful learning, achieving the expected learning outcomes, value inculcation and developing aesthetic sensitively at the primary level.
A new subject Art of Healthy and Productive Living has been introduced at the primary level. The main objective is to contribute towards and create a conductive environment for the all-round development of the child. In order to reduce the burden of the existing syllabi, an effort has been made to provide happy experiences to the child so as to make the process of learning joyful. No textbook has therefore, been prescribed.
In this subject, the focus is on organizing various kinds of activities both in and out of the school premises. The new subject is primarily activity-oriented and hence, it emphasizes what to do and how to provide for meaningful experiences through a variety of activities. This handbook has been prepared for teachers to help them in the implementation of the syllabi. It is hoped that this Handbook for teachers of classes I, II and III will provide guidance on theoretical and practical aspects of the subject such as understanding and organising the need for selecting appropriate activities, keeping in view the age, interest and the development levels of children.
In this new endeavour, the role of the community as an active partner in the process of education has been projected as essential. To make the teachers understand the subject better, some exemplar activities have been included. The teachers can also plan other activities, keeping in view he local requirements and needs of children.
This hand book has been developed through a series of workshops in which many working and retired teachers, health, physical education and yoga experts, teacher educators and representatives of voluntary organizations deliberated. I express my grateful thanks to all of them and to all the Department of Elementary Education for preparing a Handbook.
It is hoped that the teachers will find this Handbook useful in the effective organization of activities. In addition it should also enable them to develop those abilities in children which will in the real sense take them towards the Art of Living.
At the primary level a new subject – Art of Healthy and Productive Living – has been included, besides language and mathematics. This new subject includes Health, Physical Education, Art Education and Work Experience. Art of Healthy and Productive Living here implies the Art of living. Living life as an art would also imply that education should be such that children learn to live a purposeful life through a variety of experiences by participating in activities, learning by them and happily internalizing the outcome of their experiments.
We have to look at this area in a broader perspective. To present this as a new subject means that we have to provide for information, methods of application and the beauty of the various aspects of life in their totality. Therefore the meaning of health is not only physical well-being but also mental and emotional well-being. The word ‘productive’ would suggest not only producing something but also to develop creative ability which inspires a child to make something new. This inspiration to make something will lead the child to use his/her mind and hands to experiment, explore and create. This will also help him/her to develop a positive attitude towards the dignity of labour.
We have to reduce the burden of rote learning by replacing it with activity-oriented opportunities so that the all-round development of the child’s personality is achieved. Consequently he/she should be able to lead a happy, contented life as a member of society, dedicated to making a contribution as a citizen of the society and the nation.
The major objective of the Art of Healthy and Productive Living is to develop a positive social attitude towards the dignity of labour and to nurture values, aesthetic sense and skill for healthy living.
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