Vertical teaching or Vertical age group teaching is an experiment Indian schools are warming up to. Under Vertical teaching, each class has a mix age group of children with common interests. For instance, standard I would have students aged 5 years, 6 years and 7 years with common interests which could be sports, arts, theater or science etc. The children pursue their interests in this mix age group till a particular standard like class VIII and then are rearranged to focus on academics and co-curricular activities eventually for board exams. The significant part however is how appropriately a school’s pedagogical methodology identify a child’s interests and abilities.
Benefits of Vertical Teaching
Vertical teaching is claimed to help in expanding the horizons of student experience and becoming inclusive. Students get enough time to excel in field that interests them. This form of schooling is claimed to have helped England peak in sports at Rio Olympics. This however may come at expense of average academics performance for the schools.
Experiments in India
Vertical teaching for a specific field is common. You might see a dance teacher instructing children of varied age group. Similarly, you might notice a tution class encompassing students of different age group.
However still, school system in India is still in process of warming up to the methodology.
Isha Home school at Coimbatore is one such school which is making use of the vertical age group system. The school is striving to identify child’s interests and abilities and provide directions towards the same. The faculty comprises of engineers, architects, doctors, accountants, management graduates and a host of other professionals who have had a strong experience of working in their field and are now teachers by passion. On academics front, the results stand at an average of around 80% which is decent yet not impressive. When explored, one will find that the individual academic results have both peaks and bottoms. This is understandable for the very nature of thought process behind this brand of teaching.