The dramatic end of every passing year always culminates in great soul searching and analysis and setting up of new aspirations. How much success have we had with our interventions, how satisfied have our parents been with our work, what are the new initiatives we must plan are many of the issues that we think about. With every passing year, we have to also face new challenges of getting new instructors who share our philosophy.
This year has been rather different in terms of our growth and development. With the belief that small is beautiful, we have continued to work on a one-on-one basis with children following very structured lesson plans tackling, sequencing, reading, spelling, working memory, logic and reasoning skills, and yet as an institute we have really expanded. This year saw the realization of a long-standing dream of opening another branch of the Learning Arc. After searching high and low, we finally found another place so that we can work with children in HSR layout.
I have also had the superb opportunity of reaching out to two cities, Faizabad and Varanasi, where we have set up learning labs and conducted training programs for teachers. It has been great to travel out to these places where Learning disability identification and remedial measures were only a distant term. It was lovely to see how enthusiastically the teachers absorbed all the information given to them. Today, they are able to assess and remediate so many children in their schools.
In Bangalore, I have seen a lot of special educators sprouting out in every neighborhood or so it seems from the various messages I see on one of the WhatsApp groups I belong to. It is a welcome development as the rising incidence of Learning Disorders requires a large number of instructors.
For me personally, the process of teaching children with learning difficulties is a gradual process, as we have to work with children with low underlying ability. Teaching them on a one-on-one basis is a priority as the impact of the teaching is swifter and more effective. Other programmes like Social skills, Handwriting, Brain Gym or Yoga certainly complement the literacy and academic remediation. But progress is made only when the parents cooperate and the schools understand these issues. It is also my hope that the schools respect the spirit of inclusion and respect the Disabilities Act. Unfortunately, most of the schools do not acknowledge the existence of learning disabled kids leading to a lot of pressure on the children. Many children drop out of school. The spirit of inclusion and integration is not respected by a lot of schools.
With the increase of Learning difficulties, one hopes that more and more children receive timely intervention and remediation and are saved from future behavioural issues and low self-esteem. This will be our endeavour at the Learning Arc.