Thousands of years ago, when humans were surviving on the basic instincts in the rest of the world, India had an organized and highly educated society. We learned to settle down, and social interactions had emerged out of the realization that man is a social being, and different from other animals. As the intellect and knowledge in humans refined, there also developed an urge to pass on their learnings to the next generation, and this was perhaps the beginning of the Education system as we know it.
The ancient Indian education system is recognized as the ‘Vedic Education System’ which was imparted by learned Brahmins/ teachers and was offered as a great service to the community. There was no specific amount charged or demanded, and students stayed with the teachers in their Ashramas/Gurukul. Students were a part of the teacher’s extended family. The students served their teachers, helped them in household chores, and were sheltered and fed by the teacher’s family. Children gained knowledge which was not just bookish, but also experiential in nature. The King/Chieftain and the entire community/society looked after the needs of teachers.
The Vedic education system was value based and emphasized upon the holistic development of an individual based on moral excellence and character building. The major focus was on the higher order thinking and self-realization of an individual.
It was not mandatory for every individual to get a formal education at the gurukul, it was by choice. Majority of the children received informal education in their own family from their fathers and other relatives. This was helped continue their family tradition by developing adequate skill sets to make a decent living.
Today, the education system in India is one of the best in the world. With newer pedagogies in teaching, international curricula, digitalization, and technological advances, our children are equipped to thrive in any part of the world. While our children are keen to learn western languages like French, German and Spanish other than English, the rest of the world is keen to learn our ancient language, Sanskrit. This keenness to exchange the best is the soul of the 21st century.
Modernization is the need of the hour, but we must be true to our roots and remember our core values which make us live better and lead happier lives.
Respecting elders, valuing what we have i.e. being grateful, having an attitude of gratitude, compassion, humility, and sensitivity towards the environment are our core values. This is why we Indians worship trees, animals, natural forces, sun, moon, and all human incarnations, who were born on this earth to spread love and peace. It is our humility, not superstition that makes us different from the rest of the world.
The Indian education system believes in modern thinking, science, mathematics, technological innovation without forgetting our traditional and cultural roots. This philosophy, in fact, echoes in Cambridge International Education and International Baccalaureate Program ‘Excellent International education without forgetting one’s local tradition and culture’.
Today the entire world is shrunken into a global village and Indian parents are keen to prepare their children for global citizenship through International Education. With the combination of international education and Indian cultural values, our children would be the best assets to the world. It is the responsibility of all adults at home, school, and society at large to lead our children towards a bright future.
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