Inside the primary school, Iqbal colony in Ferozpora, Tangpora, the classes are bustling with activities. Nazia Bhat, a teacher is taking a class and students will not get bored if she takes the class for the whole day.
Nazia joined the school in 2017 and since then, she has been everyone’s favourite. Her motive is to bring the school at par with the private school. She has been working hard with the students in achieving her goals.
The school which once had enrollment of 7 students is now attracting the students with every passing year. Most of the students in the school belong to the tribal community.
Initially when she joined the school, she felt the lack of parental support in the students’ education. “I worked on this area first. I counselled parents how much education can change the lives of their children and sought their feedback every now and then,” she said.
Once she gained the confidence of parents, she worked on children. What really helped her was the role play methods.
“I worked on the reading and writing skills of the students. Role play activity helped my students a lot. Students belonging to village areas are shy and lack exposure. I offered them my marker and told them to teach the class," she said.
During pandemic, due to the lack of access to smartphones, the students were involved in community classes.
Outdoor classes, role plays, word drills and spelling bees are some of the activities done by her in the school.
She manages the Facebook page of the school where she uploads the activities done in the class.
“My kids really enjoy and get excited when I shoot their video. It gives them exposure to speak in front of the camera,” she adds.
While encouraging them to speak in English, Nazia said that she tells students to use English words for the things that are used every day.
She further said that every morning, kids and staff reach early before school starts because everyone is eager to learn.
She said, “The kids of my school have high aspirations and dreams. Everyone wants to be something in their lives. Unless the base of the child is not strong, they can’t reach anywhere so guidance at primary level is very important.”
Some of the students are highly interested in arts and drawing and Nazia is encouraging every one of them to pursue it. “We have introduced art and calligraphy in the school which has improved their writing in Urdu and Kashmiri,” she said.
What next for her is that she wants a computer for the kids.“My kids have studied about computers, laptops in textbooks but I want them to have a learning experience with it,” she said.
From 2003, she has been working in the department of school education and has served in various schools.