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Media center promotes e-learning

Students 'take more interest in lessons involving moving images' when learning communication

Sister Cyril Mooney, assistant commissioner of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan Shaik Mohammad Saleem and filmmaker Ashoke Viswanathan Sister Cyril Mooney, assistant commissioner of Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan Shaik Mohammad Saleem and filmmaker Ashoke Viswanathan
  • Julian Das, Kolkata
  • India
  • May 6, 2011
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A Jesuit-run media center in Kolkata is promoting e-learning in schools using audio-visual material in a bid to make lessons more interesting.

The center, named Chitrabani (sight and sound), began its Bichitra Pathsala (innovative school) a year ago.

“We develop lesson plans using popular films, documentaries, YouTube clips, news and television programs for schools," said Bichitra Pathsala secretary, Subha Das Mollick.

“Our training programs help teachers and students become critical media consumers.”

Bichitra Pathsala provides regular training programs for teachers on “Tools in Schools,” “Understanding Movies and Media” and on “Skills Enhancement.”

Some 50 educators and media experts held an interaction called “Changing Paradigms in Today's Learning Environment” during the recent release of e-Journal Bichitra, Mollick said.

Principal of Loreto School, Sealdah in West Bengal Sister Cyril Mooney, principal of Loreto School in Sealdah in West Bengal says moving images are more useful and effective in to retaining student interest in any given subject.

However, she wondered how many rural schools would be able to afford media facilities.

The 41-year-old media center, founded by Jesuit Father Gaston Roberge, also offers training programs in communication media; produces radio programs for Radio Veritas Asia; and organizes collaborative ventures on media study.

Jesuit Brother Thomas Carlo, who administers the center, said it has played a significant role in promoting adult literacy in Bengal and Bangladesh for the past 30 years through its “Chetana” programs broadcast from Manila by Radio Veritas Asia.

During its early years, the center was known for its low-cost media training, said Brother Carlo, who has been associated with the center for over 30 years.

Tapendu Banerjee, who is studying video film-making, says students receive quality training in communication media thanks to the center. “Chitrabani’s rich expertise and specialized library are unique to Eastern India.”

Over 200 students are trained by the center each year.

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