The concept of child-centred education implies that the child occupies the central place in the educational process. The old concept of education emphasised the importance of the teacher who always remained at the giving end. The modern concept of education gives the pride of place to the child and places him at the centre-stage. Capacities, Needs and Interests of Child: As noted above, in child-centred education, the child is the centre of activity.
This means, all programmes are geared to his requirements. In the Dictionary of Education, Prof. P. M. Lohithakshan elaborates the concept of child-centred education by saying that in this type of education “educational activities are designed and implemented on the basis of the capacities, needs and interests of children. Curricula, teaching methods, evaluation, co-curricular activities, etc. are all planned accordingly. ” In the words of Prof. G. L.
Arora, “Child-centred education means that for the rganisation of different processes of education, child’s point of view-his needs, interests and aptitudes should get precedence over the teacher’s, curriculum developer’s or evaluator’s point of view. ” Educational programmes meaningful to Children. In child-centred education, educational programmes make learning more interesting and meaningful to children. Children-active participants In child-centred education, children become active participants in the teaching- learning process. They receive ample opportunities for active learning, social nteraction, problem solving and creative work in the classroom”, says Prof. Lohithakshan. Caters for individual differences Child-centred education caters for individual differences. Psychology and experience tells us that children differ in their innate capacities. So, child-centred education compels the teacher to plan his educational methods to suit individual differences. This means, a teacher cannot employ a particular method without taking into consideration the n s and requirements ot children.
Child’s balanced development Child-centred education leads to balanced development of the child’s potentialities and his personality. This results from satisfaction of basic needs of children. Summing up: To sum up, the concept of child-centred education is “based on the assumption that individual’s life is self-contained and self- sufficient . That the individual is the end and not the means. According to this view, social institutions exist only to make the individual life better, richer and happier. ” Child-centred education fulfils this mission.
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