Rapid Promotion or Double Promotion
By this we mean more than one promotion during the course of the year. If a child shows an extraordinary achievement in own class, he may be given a double promotion. The aim of this promotion is to place the gifted student.
In a setting suiting him most but at occasions such promotions prove to be very detrimental to the child.
The child may be a gifted in comparison with the students of his previous class but may not show the same progress in the next class with the students of different mental and physical make-up and this would result in his mental retardation in the new setting. Age, social maturity and health-all these factors should be given due weight age.
According to this scheme, students with more or less similar background are grouped together in the same section.
It is a common practice in some of the schools to group students into various sections i.e., A, B, C, etc., according to the intellectual, physical and social interests of the students. This creates healthy competition and is very useful in large schools where classes can be divided into different sections.
Enrichment of the Curriculum
This implies that the gifted students be encouraged to study a variety of books and reference material. On the co-curricular side also provision for a sufficient variety of activities should exist in a school so that the students may develop various social and moral qualities of a high order.
Triple Track Plan which introduces elasticity in the classification of the students is very popular in American Schools. According to this scheme the authorities prescribe a uniform syllabus for all. Average children cover it within the normal period, the dull in a large period and the gifted in a shorter period in comparison to average children.
In some of the advanced countries of the world, separate schools have been provided for such students. This system has been criticized on the ground that quite a large number of such students will be deprived of that practice in leadership which they will get ill association with average children.
Brown feels that keeping these children as an integral part of the school is the factor most important in affecting their future personal happiness. They have to live in a world of mixed people- superior, normal, inferior, good, bad and indifferent-and they have every right and more need, to be prepared for that.
These schools may be planned during summer vacations. These schools are being successfully tried in the U.S.A. Academically talented students are selected from different parts of the country on the basis of psychological, tests, interview and previous school record and are brought together for a special educational programme. The programme is intended to be very challenging and is planned under the expert guidance of a band of talented teachers.
The students are provided with the best available books which they may consult for writing their project reports and for holding discussion class.
Usually three areas- science including mathematics, social studies and literature-are covered. After the programme is over, the students return to their regular schools. Students attend summer schools so long as they do not complete their final school leaving examination. Such a scheme may also be planned in our countries.
The types of backwardness and the remedial programmes for such students
Generally speaking, no mother or father is easily prepared to accept that their child is mentally backward. But modem intelligence test techniques have indubitably established that some children are mentally backward.
A backward child is more in need of assistance than one with average or above average intelligence. Hence, in modem schools teachers are expected to pay particular attention to the weak students in their classes.
A backward child, evidently, is one who has an intelligence quotient lower than the average child. In “the words of Cyril Burt, “A backward child is one, who in the middle of the school career, is unable to do the work of the class below that which is normal for his age.”
In this way, the backward child falls far behind other children of his age in matters of study. In school, such children remain in die same class for many years, and fail to progress upward.
Education psychologists have no single opinion on the intelligence quotient below which a child can definitely be called backward. Yet, generally psychologists classify those children as backward whose intelligence quotient falls below 85.
Problems of Backward Children
Children who are backward have certain problems that are peculiarly their own. Having a very low intelligence quoting, they require to be taught many things by others. A backward child cannot lead; he is more in a position to end the help and sympathy of friends and relatives.
A child who is very feebleminded, having an intelligence quotient of 70 or less, cannot obtain education in the ordinary school, and has to be sent to special institutions.
Emotional adjustment of the child is completely disintegrated if he fails in the same class time after time. In a class, teaching an approximate to the average level of students. Hence, it is only natural for the backward child to meet with failure.
Backward child also faces difficulties in social adjustment. In the group he does not easily grasp even the smallest thing, and rules of play have to be respected for his benefit. His colleagues naturally heckle him.
It is possible, that a spark of leadership may be ignited in him if he communicates with those younger than himself but on the same intelligence level. But there he is unwelcomed since other children steer clear of him because of his physical superiority.
Adults pay him little or no attention; instead he is scolded from time to time. In adolescence and adulthood, too, the situation of this child does not improve. Activities of the group are usually on a higher level, so that he does not fit in them either.
Causes of Backwardness
It is not even possible to recount all the various causes of backwardness, but the main causes are the following:
1. Physical Causes
Due to many physical defects and abnormalities, the child lags behind other average children. Such physical conditions would be weakness of the eyes, deafness or being hard of hearing, stuttering, being weak or crippled, etc this also has an adverse effect upon his social adjustment.
2. Educational Immaturity
Physical and mental short commands in the child result in educational immaturity. Putting it differently, he has no adequate maturity to grasp the teachings is customary for his age leave.
3. Mental Defect
It has been indicated earlier that the backward child has a very low intelligence quotient as compared with that of an average child. Having a low intelligence, his other mental characteristics and abilities also do not compare favorably with the average child.
4. Emotional Factors
The child’s social adjustment is defeated by his mental and physical abnormalities, and he meets with successive failures. He meets with criticism on every account.
Hence it is natural for him to manifest anxiety tension, depression and there emotional factors Sometimes though every other defect is absent; the child is backward in his class for no better reason than these psychological or emotional factors.
5. Atmosphere in the Home
One reason of backwardness can also be the atmosphere in the home. Proper development of the child cannot occur in a virulent family atmosphere. Hence, he falls behind children of his age group.
And among the factors that contribute to the defective atmosphere in the home are constant quarrelling and fighting between parents and children, unbalanced diet, peace and calm, poverty, etc.
6. Lack of Interest
Sometimes, even though the child is free from all the defects and shortcomings mentioned above and even those that have not been mentioned, he falls behind the rest of the class for the simple reason that he cannot stir any interest in the various subjects being taught this causes repeated failure.
7. Factors Concerning the Schools
The school can be a variable storehouse of factors that inhibit the child’s development such as inadequate method of teaching, uneducated teachers.
Undesirable atmosphere, inadequate curriculum, defective time table, disgusting relations between students and teachers etc all these causes conspire to make even the average child look backward.