Tuesday 29 April 2014

Education Cartoon-6

Clarity of Vision in Education 

There is no dearth of creative and innovative ideas in education system but problem is we are not trying in one direction. One direction means singleness of vision among all the stake holders of education i.e. from policy makers to students and society. All of us should be clear about 'why' and 'how' part of vision in education. 

Monday 28 April 2014

Education Cartoon-5

Innovative Thinking?

vishal bhadani

This will continue as long as there is gap between what teacher speaks in the classroom and what he does in/outside the classroom. Teach innovative thinking by practicing one! 

Saturday 26 April 2014

Education Cartoon-4

Education and Ethics
vishal bhadani

It is sheer failure of education as a system and teachers in particular that ethics are not inculcated in students.

It is not limited to exam system only but it is tragic enough that unethical things are practiced within a system that claims to educate people!

Do you love films...? I do...!

If yes, you'll love this website...!

As teen agers most of us had those periods when our parents had said NO MORE FILMS and TV until x or y exams are over. The other times also parents were just liberals with our watching films. We used to wonder if we can ever have YES for all the films as long as we like. Well, it never happened in the past but you can make it happen now. There a website for all the film lovers in general and Hollywood film lovers in particular. This website will give, and your parents a valid reason to see films: i.e. English language enhancement. The website is: http://speechyard.com/
Speechyard is a place, where English learners have a perfect opportunity to improve their English and expand language knowledge by means of educational entertainment. It is suggested that you watch your favorite films and music videos, and learn colloquial phrases by means of creating your own library, where you should train sentences you'd like to know. You may also communicate with other English learners and find new friends all over the world!
You just need to log in with your faceboock or e-mail id. You can choose from many languages of the world, including Gujarati and Hindi, for translation and grammar assistance. It is interesting to know that all the videos are embedded with English subtitles. While watching a video if you come across a new or unknown word, you just need to click on it…! And there comes a pop up window which will provide you the translation of the word. Now, isn’t it a fun way of learning English. Further, Speechyard also offers the reading of best books with the same facility of translation and language assistance.
So, give it a try.
If you find it useful…well, you are welcome.

- Mihir Dave 

Thursday 24 April 2014

Education Cartoon-3

There can be two interpretations of this cartoon: (1) as a system, education must focus on knowledge and wisdom than just information and (2) As a teacher I will wait for those students who can at least identify the information!  

Tuesday 22 April 2014

Email to employees

Satya Nadella's email to employees on first day as CEO

Microsoft Corp named company veteran Satya Nadella as its next chief executive officer on Tuesday, ending a longer-than-expected search for a new leader after Steve Ballmer announced his intention to retire in August.

Read below, the email Nadella sent to his employees, following his appointment as CEO.

Feb. 04, 2014

From: Satya Nadella
To: All Employees
Date: Feb. 4, 2014
Subject: RE: Satya Nadella – Microsoft’s New CEO

Today is a very humbling day for me. It reminds me of my very first day at Microsoft, 22 years ago. Like you, I had a choice about where to come to work. I came here because I believed Microsoft was the best company in the world. I saw then how clearly we empower people to do magical things with our creations and ultimately make the world a better place. I knew there was no better company to join if I wanted to make a difference. This is the very same inspiration that continues to drive me today.

It is an incredible honor for me to lead and serve this great company of ours. Steve and Bill have taken it from an idea to one of the greatest and most universally admired companies in the world. I’ve been fortunate to work closely with both Bill and Steve in my different roles at Microsoft, and as I step in as CEO, I’ve asked Bill to devote additional time to the company, focused on technology and products. I’m also looking forward to working with John Thompson as our new Chairman of the Board.

While we have seen great success, we are hungry to do more. Our industry does not respect tradition — it only respects innovation. This is a critical time for the industry and for Microsoft. Make no mistake, we are headed for greater places — as technology evolves and we evolve with and ahead of it. Our job is to ensure that Microsoft thrives in a mobile and cloud-first world.

As we start a new phase of our journey together, I wanted to share some background on myself and what inspires and motivates me.

Who am I?

I am 46. I’ve been married for 22 years and we have 3 kids. And like anyone else, a lot of what I do and how I think has been shaped by my family and my overall life experiences. Many who know me say I am also defined by my curiosity and thirst for learning. I buy more books than I can finish. I sign up for more online courses than I can complete. I fundamentally believe that if you are not learning new things, you stop doing great and useful things. So family, curiosity and hunger for knowledge all define me.

Why am I here?

I am here for the same reason I think most people join Microsoft — to change the world through technology that empowers people to do amazing things. I know it can sound hyperbolic — and yet it’s true. We have done it, we’re doing it today, and we are the team that will do it again.

I believe over the next decade computing will become even more ubiquitous and intelligence will become ambient. The coevolution of software and new hardware form factors will intermediate and digitize — many of the things we do and experience in business, life and our world. This will be made possible by an ever-growing network of connected devices, incredible computing capacity from the cloud, insights from big data, and intelligence from machine learning.

This is a software-powered world.

It will better connect us to our friends and families and help us see, express, and share our world in ways never before possible. It will enable businesses to engage customers in more meaningful ways.

I am here because we have unparalleled capability to make an impact.

Why are we here?

In our early history, our mission was about the PC on every desk and home, a goal we have mostly achieved in the developed world. Today we’re focused on a broader range of devices. While the deal is not yet complete, we will welcome to our family Nokia devices and services and the new mobile capabilities they bring us.

As we look forward, we must zero in on what Microsoft can uniquely contribute to the world. The opportunity ahead will require us to reimagine a lot of what we have done in the past for a mobile and cloud-first world, and do new things.

We are the only ones who can harness the power of software and deliver it through devices and services that truly empower every individual and every organization. We are the only company with history and continued focus in building platforms and ecosystems that create broad opportunity.

Qi Lu captured it well in a recent meeting when he said that Microsoft uniquely empowers people to "do more." This doesn’t mean that we need to do more things, but that the work we do empowers the world to do more of what they care about — get stuff done, have fun, communicate and accomplish great things. This is the core of who we are, and driving this core value in all that we do — be it the cloud or device experiences — is why we are here.

What do we do next?

To paraphrase a quote from Oscar Wilde — we need to believe in the impossible and remove the improbable.

This starts with clarity of purpose and sense of mission that will lead us to imagine the impossible and deliver it. We need to prioritize innovation that is centered on our core value of empowering users and organizations to “do more.” We have picked a set of high-value activities as part of our One Microsoft strategy. And with every service and device launch going forward we need to bring more innovation to bear around these scenarios.

Next, every one of us needs to do our best work, lead and help drive cultural change. We sometimes underestimate what we each can do to make things happen and overestimate what others need to do to move us forward. We must change this.

Finally, I truly believe that each of us must find meaning in our work. The best work happens when you know that it's not just work, but something that will improve other people's lives. This is the opportunity that drives each of us at this company.

Many companies aspire to change the world. But very few have all the elements required: talent, resources, and perseverance. Microsoft has proven that it has all three in abundance. And as the new CEO, I can’t ask for a better foundation.

Let’s build on this foundation together.

- Shared by
Ms. Gazal Pasnani

Monday 21 April 2014

Who are better learners: children or adults?

Who are better learners: children or adults? 

As children do we have a natural ability and motivation to take up new interests, which as adults we seem to loose? Are there too many social pressures on adults or are there other reasons for the apparent decline in a human-being’s capacity to learn?

In the process of learning following three questions have to be kept in mind. What is to be learnt? (area / subject of learning). Why something-anything is to be learnt? (the purpose of learning). How to learn? (the method/s of learning). The above questions, pertaining to the ability of learning that vary in children and adults, fall under the category of third question of the process of learning i.e. how anything can be learnt?

In the Greco-Roman tradition, there are two classical theories of acquiring knowledge. First is, the concept of ‘tabula rasa’, which considers mind as a blank slate in the beginning; everything comes to it from experience. For instance, it is from seeing so many round objects, which were not perfectly round, that man is able to abstract the idea of the circle. Second classic theory goes back Plato, who claimed that such “ideas” of the circle or the triangle or the line are perfectly innate in the mind, and it is because they are given to the mind, man is able to project them on reality.

Now, in the case of children the theory of tabula rasa seems apparent. As a child has a mind with no experience. So for a child each day is a lesson and any object he sees for the first time is a wonder. As a result, the child will have natural interest in any new thing that appears before him. And, as it is a natural process hardly any external motivation is required, except in the cases of inequality (social, economic and so on) or of psychological complexes (inferiority complex, trauma and so on).

On the other hand, adults are possessed with experiences (good or bad), learning (proper or improper) and social status whether satisfactory or otherwise. Here, the theory of Plato is partially applicable. When any new thing appears before an adult, he/she would evaluate it with his/her past experiences, his/her learning and so on, because of which the process of learning is delayed. It is further delayed because of the various responsibilities that fall on him/her as an adult, be it social, economical, and so on. In the case of adults motivation plays a crucial role.

Nevertheless, there is no fundamental difference between a children’s or an adult’s ability of acquiring new things, in fact an adult is more mature in terms of experience and learning. However, recent research on the neurophysiology claims that the human nervous cells are specialized. That is a nervous system of an individual differs from another hence, his preserving and sustaining the knowledge would differ accordingly.

Thus, there are no barriers or pressures for adults in appreciating new things, but it is because they are so much taken away by prior things that they can hardly pay any attention to new ones. To conclude that human ability to learn as adults would be misleading. On the contrary there can be seen increase in human arena of learning. However, as result of over reliance on the technology and electronic media, the decline of human imagination can be seen apparently.

Mihir Dave

TIPS ON Improving Your English 

Tips for Conversation Leaders

  •  Get to know your conversation partner’s interests
  •  Identify the level of readiness and build on with new things step by step
  •  Know your partner’s learning strengths and preferences
  •  Incorporate all the language aspects into your lesson 
  •  Make it challenging, but not too challenging
  •  Create friendly, encouraging and curiosity- stimulating learning environment 

Best Wishes..........

Deepali Agravat