NEW DELHI: The broad contours of the Modi government's 'padhe bharat, badhe bharat (PBBB)' was unveiled on Tuesday as a nationwide sub-programme of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.
In reality, PBBB with emphasis on early reading and writing with comprehension and mathematical skills is a repackaged and limited version of what was finalized during the UPA II. In January, the HRD ministry had finalized exhaustive class-wise learning indicators that students from class I to VIII are expected to achieve. PBBB booklet is limited to class II and standardizes outcomes.
PBBB's basic thrust is on improving "language development by creating an enduring interest in reading and writing with comprehension and to create a natural and positive interest in mathematics" related to the physical and social world. It stresses that schools should have 200 working days and 800 instructional hours in an academic year. Out of four instructional hours each day, two-and-half hours should be earmarked to reading, writing and language and one-and-half hour for early mathematics.
To inculcate reading/writing, PBBB document says meaningful text/story books and storytelling should be done through gestures and expressions. It also says space should be given to developmental phase of reading and writing at early stages like pretend reading, making use of predictions in reading and scribbling, using invented spellings etc. in writing and encouraging expressions instead of finding errors in pronunciation, spelling or writing. Also, classroom conversations should be based on classroom displays, poems, texts and pictures. PBBB says teaching-learning should be preferably in the mother tongue of the child and activities like morning message should be encouraged to bridge home-school gaps.
In case of mathematics, teachers have been asked to help children explore 3-D and 2-D shapes found in the environment, make them understand counting and do not just rote learn. Emphasis is on laying sound foundation of counting, moving on to place value and number operations.