We are no more than a space.
Either we occupy it or leave for others
Well come friends from home and abroad on my blog :
If one wants to have command over a language, writing is one of the important skills one will need to learn, along with reading, listening and speaking.
Also, it helps the learner progress during and after the completion of college and university.
This skill is a must to become a successful writer in academic as well as creative writing.
One starts learning these skills from the early years of education. School is the place where a student learns these language skills. Without language, it is almost impossible to understand this complicated world where we live.
The other three skills are considered easier to learn than writing. Writing needs regular practice and revision for a person to be competent. Grammar of a particular language, sentence structure, ability to think creatively and critically, knowledge of lexical words and their proper use (diction) are all important in good writing. Along with these, the writer’s purpose, logic, and power of persuasion matter very much.
The role of a language teacher in learning language skills cannot be ignored, since we learn language formally in school. The teacher should use the four skills of language in a balanced way in the classroom. To make the class more interesting, the teacher should create a good learning environment.
The students should have enough time to practice all the four skills in the presence of the language teacher. The teacher, in turn, must observe the activities of a student without interfering. A language teacher is ideally open, frank and friendly, and guides the students in a homely environment. This encourages students to discuss among themselves and come up with creative learning ideas.
Classroom teaching is not student friendly in many parts of the country. The image of a language teacher (especially English language teacher) is of an angry bull walking on an open street. Though many teachers have already been trained in Nepal, the teachers still continue to teach in the same old fashioned methods. It does not mean that the teachers are ignorant of teaching methodologies, but they seem careless or negligent of them.
Writing is the skill which is least practiced in classrooms. Teachers often relegate writing to homework. Instead of trying to do it by themselves, students rather copy from friends who are smart and good at language. In the long run, this makes students unable to write on any topic confidently.
They are uncomfortable with words, they are not sure of sentence structure, grammar, or lexicon. If a teacher provides enough time to use language skills only then can the students handle the subjects properly and compete with their contemporaries in college, university and workplace.
In college, most of the students come without text books, hate to listen to the lectures, but love to copy the short notes provided by their lecturers. They love to read guides and guess papers from the market.
And in the end, they find it difficult to write in the exam and are blessed with poor results. This problem is rampant in Humanities and Education faculties. If language teacher at schools had provided sufficient time to their students to practice language skills, this would not have happened.
Inability to use language skills continues to haunt students long into their career. Most of them find it difficult to sit in English language tests like IELTS and TOEFL. They miss the chance to study abroad, cannot write essays. Some of them cannot even write applications and free writings to find a good job. They cannot attend job interviews either.
At university level, students are required to write a thesis for the successful completion of a Masters Degree. Most students struggle to complete their thesis, and are compelled to find easier methods to complete their Masters.
In short, lack of writing skill paralyzes students. They think up wonderful ideas in their mind but cannot present it in letters. Many potential writers, poets, novelists and dramatists never realize their potential, and the rest of us lose beautiful pieces of art we could have enjoyed.
If language teachers in schools teach the four skills of language with equal focus, the coming generation will, no doubt, be more creative and help give the nation a new identity.
1. Message of a spark
A spark of light
Spreads in the city
With the message of humanity
The light outside
Reflects inside and brightens
Each corner of each heart
I stand staring at a candle before me.
The candle asks me the time it was burnt
From the first stones to my modern gadget
And the evils multiplied, like an unconscious
Since the time immemorial.
The candle weeps
And repents for the time it burnt and says
" I am done for and will soon off I go
melted all the time to give you a show
Close your eyes and better see
Light candles inside thee
The dense forest and not trodden path
The dirty shawl and long wished bath
The village ahead with kith and kin
The candles take you up to the well
Soothes the street that's too swell.
Blow off the candles between you and Him
See full of eyes and dance full of might.
The dance remains but not the dancer
The light not the candle
The soul not I."
2. ISHWOR KANDEL
Bird conservation is a broad topic. Conserving birds makes us aware of the need to conserve rivers, forests, lakes and farmland. Bird conservation basically entails conservation of all the elements of nature. In the long term, human interference in nature has adverse effects on our life and even our civilization. The easiest way to get involved in the conservation of nature is to develop love towards the birds around us. This will naturally stimulate the habit of bird watching.
Birds are found everywhere, from our backyard to fields and forests. Their swift movements and sweet calls attract people of any age, from young to old. Their beautiful colors attract people the most, and provide aesthetic pleasure. Though we are surrounded by birds and nature, we hardly manage time to observe them because of our hectic lifestyles. W H Davis, in his poem “Leisure”, writes—What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
Bird watching is an excellent therapy to keep us healthy and curious. Watching birds every day for even ten minutes in your backyard relieves you from stresses of daily life. Schoolchildren get bored after a hard day’s study. School teachers get tired from teaching, studying and working with children. Those who work in government offices or private organizations have their own problems. After their retirement, senior citizens have nothing to do, which makes them lonely. And the same is the case with people of other professions. They lose their sleep, start taking drugs and alcohol to get it back, which in fact multiplies their problems. When they cannot manage their stress, it can lead to high blood pressure, diabetes, brain hemorrhage, family break up, even painful death.
Ten minutes of bird watching a day helps us relax and shed these burdens. Bird watchers need to concentrate their mind on the movement of birds, which works almost as meditation. Senior citizens can watch birds in their own gardens, from the comfort of their arm chair. Bird watching helps develop creativity and imagination in children. They start making bird houses, bird baths, bird tables, etc in their garden.
Some birds are very friendly and not scared of humans. They enjoy the company of people, make nests in houses and small bushes in gardens, and feed on the leftovers of our kitchens. To attract birds in our garden, we can plant small bushes, some seed-giving plants like berries, and coconut trees where weavers love to make nests. If we can make bird houses and fix them in trees and bushes, that’s even better. Water is another important thing that attracts birds. A shallow but large saucer/vessel with water in a corner of the garden supports birding. A bird table in the center of the garden with some grains or leftovers from the kitchen helps attract birds. These birds soon begin to feel like family. We start loving them, and they, us.
Nature is the greatest therapy that can offer long and healthy life to humans. Our overall prosperity is possible if we can create harmony with nature. We will invite the destruction of life and planet we live in if we become indifferent to it. One of the easiest and the cheapest ways to benefit from nature is through bird conservation.
Bird watching keeps watchers physically, mentally, socially and spiritually healthy. A bird watcher learns many things from them. Birds work in groups or in pairs to make their nests. Male and female birds have equal shares of work, which teaches bird watchers to respect and help one another in their family. Birds get up early in the morning and start chirping beautifully, which compels the bird watcher to get up with them. Birds never collect for the next day. They do not worry about their future. This can be a good lesson for people who collect things to last into future generations, leading them to corruption and crime.
Bird watching has many other advantages. Birds are good friends of people in their old age. Bushes, flowering plants and berries in adult care centers, nursing homes, and hospitals can cure people from many diseases and help extend life. Bird watching is a part of pet therapy; birds can give good company to children, teens and adults.
So, inviting birds in our backyards is a must if we want to change our house to heaven and live a healthy life.