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Wednesday, September 22, 2021

‘Teaching Is The Only Profession That Creates All Other Professions’

Sheba Thapar, a passionate educationist, in conversation with Transcontinental Times about everything that builds her story of touching lives

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Divya Dhadd
Divya Dhadd
Journalist

INDIA, New Delhi: Sheba Thapar, a dedicated and resourceful education professional, thinks teaching is the only profession that creates all other professions.

In all the schools that she stepped in as a teacher, she ensured a school culture that encourages continuous improvements for teachers and students.

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A pass out from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University, Thapar completed her M.Sc ( Mathematics ) and B.Ed. The educationist also completed the ‘Certification for Institutional Leadership’ from IIT – Delhi.

A journey from home to another home

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“My reasons for becoming an educationist were numerous. Well, coming from the family of educationists, the culture to be associated with the educational sector developed during my childhood times. As a young girl of 10 years, I used to enact being a teacher and scribble on my wooden cupboard with chalk. So, the original plan was planted from the initial stage. I feel there is no other career more rewarding than this. Being with young children, you are always energetic, updated with the latest trends around and you grow with the students,” said a cheery Thapar.

Education – a start to end global issues

Thapar trusts that education is key to building the sense of global citizenship and values that may help spare the next generations unnecessary, obsolete tensions between civilizations. 

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“I feel that Education is one of the most powerful instruments for reducing poverty, inequality, improving health, natural environment, and even population stabilization.”

She underscores that girls’ education can bring one of the highest returns known in the field of economic development.

“Research shows that until a country’s population reaches a threshold of about six years of schooling on average, it remains trapped in a low-return economy prone to bad governance – and the new world economy is sure to bump this threshold up some more over the next twenty years,” said Thapar.

Thapar throws some light on mindset coaching

“Mindset coaching is a talking therapy, which focuses on our existing beliefs and patterns of thinking. A mindset coach can help one gain self-awareness, increase motivation, set realistic goals and engage in self-reflection with individual tasks. A mindset coach will communicate in a way that will work to identify mental blocks and other unhelpful thought patterns, then help one see the world in a new way. By optimising the way one sees the world around, a mindset coach can lead one to optimise attitudes, behaviours and daily habits.” 

Doing what teachers do best – teach

“The educators of today need to be curious, flexible and forward-thinking. The role of a teacher in the 21st century increasingly emphasises mediated learning. It needs to be all about empowering students with transferable skills for employability, growing digital citizenships, critical thinking, and creativity as well as sustainable learning that will hold up to a rapidly changing world and not just be limited to prescribed content that has been chosen for its past relevance,” communicates Thapar to rising educationists.

She adds that the role of the educator has critically changed from that of being a pedagogue to that of being a facilitator. Teaching in this century is an altogether new phenomenon, more so because the way we learn has been revolutionised. Today, learning happens everywhere, on the go, and can be customised according to one’s style and preferences. Thus, teachers need to reimagine the very concept of learning. 

In the end, Thapar words Alvin Toffler, ‘The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.’

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