The National Curriculum Framework (NCF), 2005, recommends that children's life at school must be linked to their life outside the school. This principle marks a departure from the legacy of bookish learning which continues to shape our system and causes a gap between the school, home and community.
The National Curriculum Framework (NCF), 2005, recommends that children's life at school must be linked to their life outside the school. This principle marks a departure from the legacy of bookish learning which continues to shape our system and causes a gap between the school, home and community. The syllabi and textbooks developed on the basis of NCF signify an attempt to implement this idea. They also attempt to discourage rote learning and the maintenance of sharp boundaries between different subject areas. We hope these measures will take us significantly further in the direction of a child-centred system of education outlined in the National Policy on Education (1986).
One of the key recommendations of NCF is to increase the number of options available at the senior secondary level. Following this recommendation, the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) has decided to introduce certain new areas highlighted in NCF for their potential for encouraging creativity and interdisciplinary understanding. India's heritage crafts constitutes one such area which provides a unique space for the pursuit of aesthetic and productive learning in the context of crafts. The present textbook attempts to provide a new pedagogic approach to the specialised study of India's living craft traditions. This approach focuses on combining background knowledge with field study and the experience of engagement with artisans and their crafts.
This initiative can succeed only if school principals, parents and teachers recognise that given space, time and freedom, children generate new knowledge by engaging with the information passed on to them by adults. Treating the prescribed textbook as the sole basis of examination is one of the key reasons why other resources and sites of learning are ignored. Inculcating creativity and initiative is possible if we perceive and treat children as participants in learning, not as receivers of a fixed body of knowledge.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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