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There Grey will inspire Color!

Senior Citizens' support for children (there own & other grand children) can be invaluable and can add value to education in these times.

Photo of Pritam  Dasgupta
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In child nurturing Senior Citizens (Grand parents) play an invaluable part. With COVID 19, Senior Citizens (Baby Boomers Generation, +55 age group, Early Grandparents) have been deeply impacted as they are stranded in either there homes away from home & family or are with there family members which include children as well. 

In either cases they are considered more at risk than others. These Senior Citizens are usually people who have had active lives and going out & meeting people is a social breather for them. This restriction of lockdown has left them confined. I have personally experienced in my environment that many of them have resorted to spending time with there Grand children most via virtual channels like video calls. They are fast learners and enjoy this new found digital freedom or rather incentive to learn something new to stay in touch.

Virtual Classrooms can be made interesting by involving these Senior Citizens while also engaging them. They can be involved in -

1. Story telling

2. Book reading

3. Life Experience sharing 

4. Research a topic and share there thoughts as asked by classroom students 

5. Talk to parents and teachers to ease there pressures of daily life due to balancing work and home (especially children)

6. Senior Citizens who are retired teachers can play a crucial part here to coach new teachers and at the same benifit from the learning 

7. Senior Citizens who have retired or are still active, from various fields (both locally & globally) can help classroom students with there queries and worries about various career options. These will ease the pressure on children awaiting results for any graduating exams and also about the uncertainty looming about the future or new normal

8. This approach towards the Aging Populace around the world will be crucial. Here I will quote my Mentor, Dr. Daisaku Ikeda - "According to the UN, there are more than 900 million people aged sixty and over living in the world today, and this number is expected to reach 1.4 billion by 2030.  [68]  Many governments, particularly those of developed countries, are struggling to respond to the sudden changes in social structure brought about by rapidly declining birth rates and aging demographics. 


To be treated well is, of course, essential to a person’s experience of dignity. But even more important is being looked to by others as an irreplaceable source of spiritual support. It is this that brings our dignity to an even brighter luster. The significance of such bonds remains unchanged even by grave illness or dependence on others for nursing care. Being surrounded by people who derive joy and happiness from your presence is itself a source of dignity." (in his anual 2018 Peace Proposal sent to UN - Source - https://www.sgi.org/about-us/president-ikedas-proposals/peace-proposal-2018/index.html)

What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

1. Competition to score good grades without a sense of creating value with the education 2. Lack of instilling the sense of gratitude for the avenues of education one is receiveing in comparison to someone who is not equal opportunities. 3. Lack of creativity due more stress only on bookish knowledge instead of exposing to various experiences 4. Lack of compulsary continued training for teachers ro cope with emerging changes and dealing with disruptive technology and events 5. Lack of global body that can promote teacher exchange programs equally for all countries 6. Lack of sponsorships and there awareness for children in all stratas of society.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

I am student of Design (Not just academically but as an individual) who wants to work towards improving the human condition by driving social change by Design Thinking.

I was inspired by the current situation and by the realization of this opportunity to bring about an inclusive society for all. My core inspiration in my beliefs in Soka Humanism as shared by my Mentor, Dr. Daisaku Ikeda.

What region are you located in?

  • South-eastern Asia

Where are you located?

I am located in New Delhi, India, Asia.

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Spam
Photo of Sarah Nethan
Team

Hi Pritam Dasgupta 
I'm Sarah, one of the Community Coaches. Thank you for signing up to the challenge and sharing your idea with us. Very intrigued by your concept of involving senior citizens in enhancing education in the present situation. I was reminded of my grandparents who would help me out in my studies in subjects of their expertise, during my childhood and how much both of us thoroughly enjoyed it. I was also reminded of numerous concepts of integrating a childcare centre or Pre-School with a Nursing Home to fill the void of loneliness and boredom that residents may experience and at the same time do what they're best at - caring for little children. Here are some articles for your reference: https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2016/01/the-preschool-inside-a-nursing-home/424827/ and https://ideas.ted.com/whats-a-nursing-home-combined-with-a-childcare-center-a-hopeful-model-for-the-future-of-aging/ I'm curious to learn if you envision this engagement between students and senior citizens as a separate initiative altogether or integrate it with the existing education system of a school?Good luck!

Spam
Photo of Pritam  Dasgupta
Team

Thank YOU Sarah for sharing the insightful links. My idea is to integrate it into the existing education system. Keeping it separate will defeat the purpose of inclusion.

Spam
Photo of Sarah Nethan
Team

Awesome!!

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