‘Mamta Ankit’, a YouTube channel operated from Prayagraj with more than 6 lakh subscribers is revolutionizing the teaching-learning pedagogy. Mamta Mishra, a government school teacher in Uttar Pradesh, runs this channel to provide an equal access to quality education through technology. The passion with which she teaches and broadcasts using digital media makes her a source of inspiration for other teachers in her community. Mamta shares her views on technology as well as innovations in teaching practices used by her with TechConnect.
TechConnect: Can you share your experiences about your journey of becoming a teacher?
Mamta: My mother, a dedicated and hardworking teacher, is my role model. She inspired me to take up teaching as a profession. After completing my schooling from Kendriya Vidyalaya and B.Ed and Post-Graduation from Chatrapati Shahu Ji Maharaj University, I entered the profession of teaching. In 2011, I got appointed as an Assistant Teacher in Council School based in Phoolpur block, district Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh and later got transferred to English Medium Council School in Chaka Block where I am teaching since then.
TechConnect: How would you describe your initial experience of teaching in government schools?
Mamta: Teaching in a government school is a learning experience for me. Coping with the challenges of rural areas, understanding their local dialect and learning it, was a major task for me. Apart from this, understanding the psyche of the students and issues they face daily like helping family with household chores, farming on fields, herding animals, staying at home to take care of younger siblings when their parents are out for work was definitely a tough task. But, after being acquainted with their problems, I started talking to their parents and convincing them to send their children to schools. Along with this, I redesigned the teaching pedagogy by including fun activities and games that attracted students and started appreciating parents whose children have excelled in their academic performance. This helped in keeping the students as well as their parents connected with education and school.
TechConnect: Why are innovative teaching-learning pedagogies necessary? Since when have you started innovating in your teaching methods?
Mamta: The children here in rural areas learn through an independent environment. School learning for them gives a constrained feeling. Thus, to ensure that when a student comes to the school, he/she can concentrate on studies for 5 to 6 hours, innovations in teaching-leaning pedagogy was required. Learning had to be fun and activity based so that the students develop an interest in coming to school. Hence, after developing an understanding about the students and their financial and social background, I started innovating in my teaching methods. These methods have been successful in motivating students to learn at school.
TechConnect: What made you think that you should share these experiences with others too?
Mamta: Teachers from other schools appreciated my efforts and referred my pedagogies while teaching in their class. Also, parents and students were very supportive in this initiative. Many trainee teachers also followed my innovative teaching methods and I felt the need to share my experiences and initiative with others.
TechConnect: Tell us something about ‘Mamta Ankit’- your YouTube channel?
Mamta: As more and more people started to contact me, it became difficult to share these innovative experiences with each person individually. This challenge inspired me to start my YouTube channel though which I could communicate with several people at a single time. Many people from India and abroad started following my channel and subscribing it. This channel also gave me an opportunity to get in touch with teachers from different areas, child psychologists and several people in the business of delivering education services. These conversations and learnings from various education stakeholders also helped me to improve my classroom teaching activity. ‘Mamta Ankit’ helped me to expand my classroom to global level and not just restrict it to my classroom in Prayagraj.
TechConnect: What are your plans with regards to using technology in education?
Mamta: I plan to enhance the quality of primary education and raise it to the global level and bridge the digital divide by enabling an equal access to education. My vision is to provide world class innovation in education to eliminate illiteracy and make this world a better place to be.
TechConnect: What are your views about using technology for teaching-learning, especially for primary education?
Mamta: Education and Technology complement each other. Technology helps to enhance the teaching-learning experience. Using audio-video techniques in primary education not only helps to make learning a fun-based activity but also helps children of all economic background get equal access to knowledge thus reducing the digital divide.