Most schools in India are only concerned with a student’s academic performance. It’s just assumed that people will catch on other vital life skills as they go about their lives. But that is not always true. Experience can be a cruel teacher on its own and some people get engulfed in feelings of hopelessness and hatred as they were never taught to cope with hardships in the right manner. People never sit down to explain to kids the enormity of their actual surroundings and what the world is really like. So they step into the real world unprepared and confused, and that’s when they wish they had some sort of head start. Apart from the curriculum, there are other things children should be taught early on in life.
1. Students should have an idea about the process of opening bank accounts and transferring money.
As absurd as it may sound, a majority of adults today cannot open a bank account on their own. Many find such a simple process intimidating. This is why students should be taught all the nuances while still in school.
2. Students should be taught travelling etiquette and clean usage of public utility spaces.
We all come across people who are a pain to travel with, in fact, we too are guilty of causing trouble to others at times. Basic manners like allowing people to exit before entering, offering seats to someone in need, bathroom etiquette, should all be taught in school.
3. Students should be able to survive on a budget and have a fair idea of how investment works.
Surviving on a given amount of money, making a budget, these are things that need to be ingrained from childhood. It’s necessary to teach kids about savings and investment and how it helps later in life.
4. Students, when faced with failure, should be taught how to deal with it positively.
Children need to be taught about that failure is a part of everyone’s life. They have to be made to understand that’s its okay to fail and it’s not the end of the world. Otherwise, as adults, people have a hard time dealing with it as they can’t believe they failed.
5. Sex education covering all aspects needs to be imparted through interactive sessions.
Sex education is a must in schools. By the time children finish high school, they inevitably learn all about it and mostly from the wrong sources. Such half-baked information often proves harmful. Thus, proper knowledge should be imparted.
6. Students should be taught how to cook at least one basic meal before they finish school.
Most people leave home post school for college/jobs, thus knowing how to cook a bare minimum for survival should be absolutely necessary. Gender biases go for a toss when you suffer from an empty stomach.
7. Teachers should teach the importance of relationships and how to maintain them.
Maintaining a bond isn’t necessarily something that people learn on their own. Everyone can do with a little help sometimes. By teaching people how to be a nice friend/partner, teachers will be inculcating skills that are required throughout people’s lives.
8. School kids should be taught how to differentiate between positive and negative criticism and how to deal with each.
So many of us are offended when someone points out our mistakes, short-comings or character flaws. This is because people are not taught to take criticism in a positive stride and learn from it or if it’s baseless, to just ignore it.
9. If we want bold, fearless citizens, we need to ask children to not be afraid while speaking their minds.
Often, people are unable to speak against injustice as they have never done it before. They are afraid of the consequences that can follow from speaking their mind. Students should be encouraged to speak up, to think and deliberate on matters and form opinions. They must never be voiced down.
10. Students need to be taught the importance of loving themselves, not just being more efficient.
Self-love is something that this generation is in utmost need of. Endless criticism right from childhood never gives children the scope of building a strong, healthy self-confidence. They are never comfortable in their own skin and do not love their own selves.
11. The various taxes and how to pay them should be taught in schools.
Most adults today are going about their lives with no idea about what taxes are, why we pay them or in fact how to pay them. Every activity in our life is mired with some form of tax, so it’s only fair that tax education be imparted from a young age.
12. Students need to be made aware of the various mental issues and how to deal with them.
Mental issues are real and they are nothing to be ashamed of. They do not happen to adults only. Teenagers struggling to find themselves are prone to succumb to mental diseases. Making them aware can help them understand their problems better.
13. Teachers should educate kids about how every vote impacts the country and how to vote correctly.
Being the largest democracy in the world, the importance of voting cannot be overstated. However, for some reason, it’s never taught or discussed in school. Given that most people become eligible to vote by the time they complete school, voting and its effects need to be taught.
14. Schools should have self-defence classes for both boys and girls.
It has become increasingly necessary for both boys and girls to know the basic techniques to defend themselves against danger. With school children having such less time to spare for other activities, it’s necessary that self-defence be taught in the school itself.
15. Students should have full knowledge about cyber laws, crime and cyberbullying.
The Internet is an undetachable reality of everyone’s lives today, especially teenagers. However, unchecked use of the internet can make someone fall prey to cyber-crimes. Children need to know all about cyber-laws and how to prevent/escape bullying over the internet.
Teaching children these things is the need of the hour and it’s time schools got serious about it. These are just as important as academic education.