“ICT is the music of education.” – Dr. Lakshmanbhai Chaudhari, India
Physics teacher Dr. Lakshmanbhai Chaudhari has embraced classroom technology in a big way, benefitting not only his students, but his colleagues throughout India. Chaudhari’s enthusiasm for new tools is contagious, and in today’s Daily Edventure, we get a sense for how he’s using those tools to help bring Indian education into the 21st century.
“ICT is the music of education,” Chaudhari says. “If you can synchronize it well, you will enjoy it, but if you cannot manage to balance it with traditional methods, you may produce noise instead of a melody.”
The “melody” Chaudhari has produced has been very sweet, indeed. He’s not only a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert, he’s also been recognized as a ground-breaking educator by the President of India, by the state of Gujarat, and by his school.
Chaudhari’s ambitious learning activity, Young Environmentalists, demonstrates how he uses a wide range of technology to teach vital lessons. Students explored the biodiversity of India’s national parks and wildlife sanctuaries, created websites on their assigned parks, and ultimately visited two parks — Gir National Park, Junagadh and Marine National Park, Jamnagar — to bring their lessons to life. The results are nicely captured in this Sway presentation and video.
Dr. Chaudhari is also dedicated to sharing his expertise with other teachers, all with the goal of bringing the benefits of the flipped classroom and other student-centered approaches to educators throughout India. He recently participated in a Teach Meet – the largest ever in Gujarat — on using Office Mix to create video lectures, and on using Mouse Mischief for formative assessment.
Whether he’s helping students use technology to learn and present or helping fellow teachers adopt transformative teaching approaches, Lakshmanbhai Chaudhari is making a big difference in a country where change is essential. Enjoy today’s Daily Edventure!
Why is education important to you?
Education makes us live life happily. It gives us the strength to overcome all hurdles that come in our life. Education also enables us to earn bread and butter for the family. Well educated people live well, and let others live well. Education strengthens the social, cultural and nation-building process.
Can you describe the teacher who most influenced you?
The late Mr. Jagubhai Patel, my physics teacher and Principal of N.H.L Science College, Mansa. His smiling face and warm attachment with students made physics my favorite subject. He always encouraged me to become a physics teacher. He forced us to ask questions to ourselves and to him during the class. I am trying to replicate his classroom.
Describe the most inspiring day you’ve experienced as an educator.
The day when a science project prepared by my students who were from an illiterate family background won the Western India Science Fair. We took part for the first time at the national level and were amazed by the outspoken metro city participants. But when we were ranked first, we literally cried with joy. This event makes me believe in my students’ strength and they have never disappointed me since then.
What is your proudest professional achievement?
My proudest professional achievement is the National ICT Award. I was the first recipient of the award from my state. NCERT (National Council of Educational Research and Training), New Delhi, Central Institute of Educational Technology, and the Indian Ministry of Human Resource and Development jointly selected me for the award. I was amongst eight teachers from the entire nation to receive this prestigious award from Honorable President of India in 2012. This Award is a validation of my efforts to use ICT in education, spreading ICT awareness and improving learning of my students with the help of ICT. I was in a pleasant dilemma on the day of the award function, because on the same day (September 5 – Teacher’s Day), my state government also invited me to receive the Best Principal of the State Award.
How can other educators facing similar challenges implement what you’ve learned?
With hard work, determination, self-motivated learning of new technology and having faith in students’ potential.
What is the best opportunity for innovation in education?
The government has provided computers and Internet access to almost every school. Teachers have been trained for more than a decade on how to use computers and other ICT in education, yet the actual use of the ICT is limited. We have a great opportunity for innovation in teacher’s training with the introduction of MOOCs, flipped classroom and practicals in training.
What advice would you give a new teacher?
I advise them to have some additional knowledge apart from the syllabus and textbook. I also ask them to explore the talent hidden in each student and nurture it with the help of learner-centric methods of instruction and ICT.
What is your greatest hope for the future of education in your country?
My country has the largest population of youth in the world. Youth are techno-savvy. They are digital natives. New students and teachers are computer literate so we may have a true digital education. If we can direct the youth power into the proper direction, we all have potential to acquire 21st century life skills.
About Dr. Lakshmanbhai Chaudhari, Physics Teacher, Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert
- Birthplace: Vaghasar, India
- Education: Master of Science, Master of Education, Ph.D. (Education)
- Website I check every day: physicsclassroom.com, educatornetwork.com, ictevangelist.com, Facebook
- Person who inspires me most: My wife Nila, who took all social responsibility and let me free for my study and teaching.
- Favorite childhood memory: Reciting Ramayana and Mahabharata (mythological epics) under a banyan tree of my village.
- Next travel destination (work or pleasure): USA
- Favorite book: Ramayana, Mahabharata, and Wings of Fire, an autobiography of Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.