In a bid to make yoga a more integral part of the physical education programme in central government run schools, the Human Resource Development Ministry on Monday released course material and syllabus for yoga designed by NCERT for classes VI-X, while also introducing yoga as a training module in teacher education programmes.
Yoga is already taught as an optional subject in government-run schools like the Kendriya Vidyalayas and Navodaya Vidyalayas under the co-scholastic activity of Physical Education. Sources say the NCERT is soon likely to issue guidelines that would ensure yoga is taught in one out of the three physical education classes that are conducted every week in these schools.
Releasing the syllabus and course material for students of central government run schools at a two-day conference of yoga teachers, HRD Minister Smriti Irani said the subject would not put any additional burden on students with 80 percent of the marks reserved for practicals and only 20 percent for theory.
“Yoga will be taught in upper primary and secondary (Class VI to X). We have decided that 80 per cent will be for practicals. However, I want an assurance from students that they will perform the practicals with full devotion,” Irani said. She later said the states are free to decide on adopting it in their syllabus and linking it with their the course curriculum.
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Officials said CBSE is yet to “devise” a strategy regarding the implementation of the yoga curriculum in the affiliated private schools.
Meanwhile, the National Council of Teacher Education, in its revised notification, has made yoga a compulsory training module along with ICT, gender studies and inclusive education.
“We have prepared syllabus for teachers as well. One is diploma in yoga education, bachelors in yoga education and masters in yoga education,” Irani said, adding the aim was to produce a pool of trained teachers in yoga.
Irani said a national-level competition on yoga would be organised here next year where the best performing student will be given a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh. “Our objective is that our children go to school happily. Therefore, our aim is to give a push to physical and cultural activities in schools,” she said.
Addressing the event, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister and education minister Manish Sisodia said the state government is currently working on a project in which it will reduce the main syllabus by 25 percent and replace it with “the most essential subjects of living life” like yoga,music, sports, theatre, etc.
“As far as the Centre’s yoga syllabus is concerned, we will implement it completely or partially in Delhi schools from this session itself,” he said, adding there should be no politics involved when it comes to yoga and assuring the centre that the Delhi government will extend its cooperation in the matter. “In a country like India, all of us from different segments need to understand yoga. We will have to wipe out these fractions of creeds, politics, and governments. When these will be wiped out, only then yoga is possible. This is the first condition of yoga,” he said.