In Nagaland, to some extent, improvement, changes, and developments are taking place in every area of life - social, political, economic, culture, technology, etc. This is taking place mainly due to education. Education is an important instrument which helps and has equipped us to live an enriching life, abreast with the changes that are going on in this world. Due to the efforts of the state government, private organizations, and community support, many changes and ongoing developments are visible in the education system. In Nagaland, the many government and private schools and colleges has everyone, who is involved and working, trying their best to give enriching education to the students. At the same time, there are some loopholes which are hard to ignore. One area which I observe and think is lacking behind, in general, in Nagaland’s educational institutions is the insufficient usage of modern teaching aids. I consider this to be very important in the teaching-learning process, considering the fact that we are living in the age of vast technological advancements. I know that some institutions, especially the privately owned schools and colleges, are using modern teaching aids in the classroom which are proving to be extremely beneficial for the students. The majority of the institutions, especially the government-owned institutions,are not using modern teaching aids in their institutions. Teaching requires different types of techniques, and teaching aids. The selection of the pedagogy depends on the nature of the content, learning objectives, learners’ abilities, and entry behaviour of the students. The main focus of teaching is to bring about a desirable change in the behaviour of the learner. It is brought about by the teacher using different methods and strategies, and supplementing it with teaching aids to achieve an educational objective. From the morung system of the past to the present day education system, we have witnessed a great transformation in the way we teach and learn. Traditionally, we grew up with teaching aids like blackboards, chalks, maps, flash cards, and posters. These aids, although good, now has limited scope. We can observe that the type of students, along with the times, have changed. Some of the students already have access to smartphones, computers, and the internet, because of which traditional teaching aids are not very effective anymore. A teaching aid is something which makes teaching easier and makes learning more effective and enjoyable for the student. It adds value to the process of learning. Modern teaching aids engage the students’ senses, and increase interaction with the content, leading to increased better retention. Teaching tools now used in classrooms are multidimensional in their nature. It allows the students to really enjoy the process of learning. Students are now very much advanced in the process of learning. We cannot consider them as empty vessels to be filled in by facts and figures. They are now exposed to media and the internet, accumulating learning experiences from all sides. These days the students are more inquisitive and knowledgeable, and try to think and learn independently. This increases the need of modern teaching aids in the classroom. Some of the of modern teaching aids used by teachers inside the classroom are the overhead projector (OHP) or LCD projector, charts, laptops/computers, edu-softwares, educational toys, models, audio and video clips, voice recorders, powerpoint presentations, etc. Apart from using these tools, with the help of internet connectivity, the students can be exposed to newer and better teaching aids. They can access ebooks, ejournals, video conference with scholars around the globe, and make use of educational apps like the Google Classroom.
Using these modern teaching aids in our state can be problematic. This is because of several reasons. The most pertinent of these would be the shortage of electricity in our state. Load-shedding and power failures owing to several problems complicate the usage of technological tools in educational institutions. Many of the students belong to families which may not be able to afford the fees charged by institutions using these modern teaching aids. Due to the shortage of financial resources, the institutions cannot afford to provide their students with these learning tools.
I understand and know that to have these modern tools, equipment and facilities can be quite a Herculean task. It cannot be achieved all at once. A lot of financial resources and cooperation from every sector will be needed. The goal may be challenging but we must start now. The government and management of educational institutions must take steps for proper planning and utilize the institutions’ income and government funds effectively. This will enable providing the basic and necessary modern teaching tools for the teachers and students so that our education system is more techno savvy.