In the new format that we are running the school in, the students are learning so many things that they wouldn’t have otherwise. They are all so much at ease now with using technology. They are debating, interacting, presenting and effectively communicating – like adults or (we will go ahead and say..) BETTER than adults!
We are all missing the actual physical in-person interaction that the students had before the COVID lockdowns – but, hey, let’s look at all the positives that are coming out of this too. The students are doing all the academics that they otherwise would without missing out on ANYTHING. This is because of the great systems that we have in place in Walnut – and you can easily see the difference in how much more Walnut students are doing as compared to any other student.
We are watching the students perform in elocution and mono-acting competitions. We are watching kindergarten kids learning to read with their teachers. We are watching kids narrate poems and stories to their teachers. We even observed students arguing and debating, cross questioning each other and respectfully disagreeing about whether teenagers should have jobs, whether artificial intelligence is a good thing, and whether exam marks should be abolished. And this is just the beginning .. !
And now that everyone is used to this, here comes the next feature. As the students learn different subjects in school as per the curriculum, there are so many other very interesting things around us – in the ancient past, recent past, currently, in politics, in science, in business, sports, theatre etc. that they don’t get a chance to explore. So, we thought, why not use this situation as an opportunity? And so, our team has come up with yet another feature in our online format …
What are these? These are short (roughly 10 minute) quests or puzzles which the students will undertake. They will have to read some information or maps or diagrams, ask you some questions, solve some puzzles, do some online hunting and answer the questions to complete the quest. The topics will range from political events (like the Kargil or China War, Article 370), the latest in science and technology (like bitcoin, hyperloop), economics and finance (like taxation, demonetization) international events (like Brexit, negative oil prices).
Why do we want to do this?
To give our kids more perspective about the world around them
To get them to read more (in English) and process information (to answer questions) on the go
To bring in more maturity in their writing and expression
To increase their general knowledge and awareness
To help them connect the dots between the curricular content and real-world content
To make them smarter than other kids their age the world over!
Initially, we will release one quest a week. The students can do as many as they want.
How long will each take? About 10 minutes.
Are they compulsory? Not at all
Will this content be in their exams? No, no!
Why will the students want to do these then? Ha ha – we know, right? Well, we have good motivation here : to win talents!
So is this like a competition? Yes! If they finish a quest before the due date they get 3 talents. If they finish it as the fastest 10% of their standard, they get 2 additional Talents, so that’s 5 Talents totally.
Where can you find them? In the activity classroom.
Here is the first digital quest – titled: “Escape from the Kargil War Room“. It’s live only for a week for students, and live to the world only after the Walnut students have taken it – again for a limited time frame.
And that’s how Walnut students continue on their mission to be Tough Outside and Smart Inside!