THREE - DIMENSIONAL AIDS
Direct, purposeful experiences are not always available and if available, are not always usable or applicable in making the teaching very effective. To teach a concept of wild life and its preservation, it may not be possible to visit all the wild life resorts and show all those animals to the students. Some experiences belong to remote past or future and so it is not possible to experience them in reality. A real human eye or any other human organ may be available but for a detailed study, they may prove to be useless as their handling may be awkward. Thus, sometimes, the real things are too large or too small for easy handling.
In these circumstances contrived experiences help to simplify
teaching by editing the realities. Some complicated or distracting details are omitted, and some new ones are added and the sizes are changed for the sole purpose of better understanding of the original things. Such contrived experiences are provided through objects, specimens, models, mock-ups, mobiles and puppets.
lNames of cooking methods can be learnt without the help of Objects are actual real things such as furniture, toys, refrigerators, pressure cookers, fruits, flowers, books etc. Many objects are easily available in the home or from friends, local markets, educational institutions and museums. The use of objects must be encouraged for classroom teaching as they -make teaching more effective by making the explanations very clear, example - ways to make self-help children's garments through the actual garments, give opportunity to students to touch, experience, investigate and study in the class.
You can present the objects in the class, either by displaying them in a show case, specially those which are rare, expensive and delicate or by placing them on tables for the whole class to see. You may pass them around among the students for closer view and study, if the objects are small, unbreakable and safe. Make a collection of objects for your teaching, whenever possible, for use in future to save time and energy in hunting for them when needed. Store objects either in cardboard boxes or in cellophane bags or display them in enclosed glass show cases permanently like we find in museums.
Sometimes, objects are not usable in the class as they may
1. Be suitable to classroom situation; examples-
2. if they are too large, like an elephant, and aeroplane, they cannot be brought in the room.
3. if they are too small, like insects and household pests, they are not convenient to see and conduct detailed study.
4. if they are dangerous, like snakes and wild animals they are not safe to bring in the classroom.
5. if they are soft and slippery they are inconvenient to handle, like a human eye.
if static, like buildings and gardens, they cannot be brought to the class
1. Some may be highly perishable, examples green leafy vegetables.
2. Some are not available easily in the local communities, examples - expensive costumes or food items of other countries, objects depicting past centuries, architecture of the remote past or future.
3. Some are not affordable due to high cost, example - machines, real ornaments, blue pottery.
According to Schuller, Charles and Walter, (1957) 'a specimen is an object which is incomplete, or which is representative of a group or class of similar objects', examples -
1. incomplete object-piece of a silk sari
2. representative of a group - a leaf, a cow or a folder.
They can be perishable like a butterfly, flowers etc. or non-perishable like tiles, fabrics, stones, grains etc.
Specimens are inexpensive and can be easily collected from the same sources as objects. In some cases where original objects are not usable specimens can serve the purpose. Presentation of specimens in a class depends upon their size and the size of the group of students.
1. if they are large, keep on a table and students can view them while remaining seated; example - large decorative earthen articles from Kutch or Rajasthan.
2. if they are small, convenient and safe to carry, pass them around among the students during class time; examples - cloth pieces, paper designs, colour specimens. Label them before circulating
3. if they are small, inconvenient and unsafe to pass around, call students individually or in small groups to the front, to study them during or after the class; examples - diamonds, butterflies wings, fine silver jewellery etc.
Always store specimens carefully for ready future use. Perishable items require special care. Any biological specimen can be preserved in a glass jar or vial with the help of chemicals like formalin, glycerine etc. Non-perishable or dry specimens can be stored in clearly marked wooden or steel cupboards or in shallow cardboard boxes. You may mount a dry specimen with glue, pin, tape or thread on a piece of stiff cardboard that fits well at the bottom of a shallow box. Label each specimen.
A model is a three-dimensional, recognisable imitation of an object. A model may be the same size as the object it represents or it can be smaller or larger. It can be handled and seen from a number of angles. Models can be of many types.
A scale model has the correct representation of the thing through the exactness of the scale. It can be either enlarged or reduced depending upon the need; examples - insects, buildings, etc.
A simplified model is roughly the external form of an object, used mostly for education of children and illiterate persons; examples- birds, fruits, pots, etc.
A relief model also known as a relief map is a realistic, recognisable, representation of a country or a part thereof; examples - India, Gujarat. This is mostly used for teaching elevation in geography; however, a relief map proves to be very useful in understanding the life of people living in a particular area; examples - Himalayas and plains of Rajasthan.
A working model shows how things function in a simple way. Process and mechanism can be understood better by the use of a working model; example - working of human heart, washing machine etc.,
Cross Section Model
This type of model shows the internal structure of an object as it is cut crosswise. It is useful in teaching physiology, nutrition and technical topics; example - models of brain, eye, compost pit, smokeless chulla, etc.
Models are used when real objects are not usable.
Besides these, they are also used
1. to express abstract ideas and processes; examples-digestive system of body.
2. when flexibility is needed to teach by moving the articles which originally are either too big or static;, examples - houses and their arrangements; layout of a garden, etc.
Remember that models:
1. require professional skill in preparation
2. can be expensive
3. are breakable.
They can be bought from the educational material stores, or can be borrowed from leading libraries, universities and museums, besides being prepared by professional artists, teachers and students. They can be made from a variety of materials such as cardboard, wood, metal, wax, clay, plastic, plaster of paris, plasticine or cotton.
Using Models in the Class
Before the class meets, check that the
1. scale of the model is correct - Colour of the model has not faded
2. model is not damaged.
During or after the class, models should be properly positioned where they can be seen by everybody and handled if necessary for personal study. If the models are not checked and used properly, misconceptions may arise. So precautions should be taken as follows:
1. for enlarged or reduced models, the scale should be clearly specified.
2. real weights of fruits and vegetables, if different from the models, must be clarified.
3. if possible, original objects or the colour samples may be brought to the class to show the real colours of the objects, if the colours of the models are different from that of the original.
Models must be stored properly to avoid damage through dust, strong light and pressure of other articles. If not, they will break and their colours may fade. They can be stored in conical cupboards with glass tops or cupboards with glass fronts, to serve the purpose of their permanent display.
Puppets have been used for thousands of years all over the world to stimulate and entertain people. Now their use in promoting social action has also been experimented successfully. Puppets can be of many kinds. Hand or Glove, Rod, String or Marionette or Shadow.
Puppets can be used for educational purposes because:
1. being funny, with exaggerated features and characteristics, help to motivate learners, specially children, villagers and illiterates.
2. can communicate ideas related to desirable social action such as community improvement, prohibition, family planning, nutrition, social evils, superstitions, ill treatment of women in society etc.
3. can present sensitive topics through the effective use of satire and humour, which may otherwise hurt the feelings of the audience.
4. can be easily prepared and used, except string puppets for which special skills are required.
5. are relatively inexpensive and require little by way of costumes, scenery and stage equipment as compared to a real drama when used for classroom or extension education purposes.
6. can involve the entire group/class in preparation and presentation of the puppets (puppet making, costumes, scenery, music, lighting and manipulation).
7. can be reused after proper storage and a change of costumes.
8. All types of puppets used for educational purposes, must possess some characteristics:
9. they should have prominent, pleasant or crude features that are visible from far.
10. they need to be colourful and of an appropriate size for a group of 30 to 40 persons.
they should have costumes suitable for their roles, example - rural characters should be dressed like village folks, an old couple should look old through white hair, spectacles etc.
they should be made of durable, light-weight materials (paper pulp).
Since marionettes and shadow puppets are difficult to manipulate and require special puppet stages/screens, their use in actual classroom situations is limited. So here, the preparation of only glove and rod puppets is discussed, which are handmade with stuffed cotton.
A Glove puppet consists of a head and a loose glove-type body which fits over the puppeteer's hand and helps to hide the hand. The index finger fits into the puppet's head, and the thumb and second finger slide into the slits or sleeves with stuffed hands to form movable arms. The head can be made of a brown paper bag stuffed with paper cloth stuffed with cotton or two layers of cloth figures stitched papermache with the help of a clay mould rubber ball.
Add the features and distinguishing marks like a bindi or a moustache. Then, make the neck of the glove puppet by rolling a chart paper to form a tube-like-structure and push it inside the head through the hole at the bottom of the head.
Stitch the glove with two layers of cloth, wide enough to hold the hand and long enough to come up to the elbow. Dress the glove puppet appropriately, example - sari and ornaments or cap and shirt. A rod puppet usually has a jointed body made of stiff paper attached with stiff wire, umbrella ribs or thin wooden sticks to it's arms and the body or a head and a wooden stick. Rods can also be used to push animal cut-outs, stage furniture or scenery on or off the stage or to move while on the stage.
Puppets cannot change their facial expressions. Throughout a play it has to have the same face, happy, sad or neutral. Puppets cannot change their dress during the play. This creates a problem when showing a puppet doing a variety of activities in different places; examples - to show a puppet getting married and then attending a funeral. Except string puppets, other types of puppets cannot show a variety of actions, specially leg movements as they have no legs.
or a sari to form a hiding place for the puppeteers juggling glove or rod puppets. Extra lighting on the puppet stage, appropriate accessories and scenery with pinned-up cut-outs are a must for drawing and holding the attention of the audience.