Contents or Container


Container – Child
Contents – What the child does or learns or thinks

It appears to me that the conventional education system is quite focused on the contents. Maybe the initial idea was that when we work on contents, it will develop the container. But over a period of time – more and more people have given substantially more importance to contents – so much so that the container is almost forgotten.

In fact, the container (child) is judged on the basis of how well the child can answer questions related to content (often memory of content).

Part of the problem is this whole idea of ‘teaching.’ Invariably teacher ends up teaching the contents and not the container. Mostly, schools seek teachers who are expert on specific content (say Maths teacher). Obviously, the teacher is in love with the content (maths). You see the problem!

The moment we disregard the various subjects as important, and regard the container as our main subject – we change the paradigm completely.

Now, we do not need to teach. Now, any content can help the container develop whatever he or she needs to develop – skills – self, social, physical, mental, logical, creative … whatever.

Just to take an example – I can be creative in anything – playing badminton, making ladoos, designing curtains, or just making people laugh.

When we remove our focus from contents, it also helps the child realise that the contents can change, contents are not the main thing, that he or she is the hero of his or her movie! Now the child has a million choices – for at the end of it – all contents are good to live by.

In fact, many of us seldom choose to do what were key contents (the subjects) in our student life – we love to or would love to live other contents – as career choices, as passion avenues or simply as joy creators in our life.

Would it not make sense if we could work with the container and leave it to decide the content.

Let us not fall in love with the content, let us love the container.