SHERAS FERNANDES | NT KURIOCITY
Several schools in Goa cater to the needs of children with impairments by providing extensive educational or emotional support. Teacher at Our Lady of Rosary High School, Fatorda, Anaita D’costa has been working as a curative educator and helping children with special needs overcome and cope up with their learning difficulties. She believes that every child is different in their unique ways and is always striving to bring forth their best.
With a master’s degree in Social Work from Don Bosco College, Panaji, Anaita worked at several organisations as placed by the college. It was at Aakash – Centre for Learning Disabilities that her life changed and she felt the need to do something for special children. “The organisation had to close down so I started taking classes at home. As of now I teach eight children with disabilities like autism, dyslexia and slow learning,” says Anaita adding that she has plans of renting a room where she can teach these children.
Equipped with teaching and learning aids Anaita teaches the children basic English, how to solve math problems and more. “I take classes for students of class one to class eight. Besides teaching I also set examination papers for schools,” she says.
Anaita feels that it is the responsibility of a teacher to make a class interesting for students who are easily distracted. “There are numerous teaching aids like charts, documentary or PowerPoint presentations. Topics like science could be boring for some children and hence teachers have to use interesting ways of teaching,” she says.
Anaita believes that parental support is the key for a child’s development. “Parents of children with disabilities have to be very supportive,” she says adding that the children she teaches have now become like family to her.
She adds that children with disabilities should be mainstreamed. “When they are in regular schools these children have experienced isolation and discrimination, sometimes even teachers hesitate to set a separate paper for them,” says Anaita. She concludes by saying teachers have to be more sensitive towards such children.