Home » Noisy Contemplation » Taare Zameen Par: Disordered Memories

Taare Zameen Par: Disordered Memories

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I’m not a dyslexic. Never was. I don’t think I had learning disorder of any kind. The fact that I used to flunk miserably in Math and all the related subjects was because I didn’t have an aptitude for them. But the dictionary of my parents’ generation didn’t have that word, I guess. So, my pathetic scores were always linked to my laziness, introversion, lack of interest, day-dreaming…and a lot of xyz which can’t logically be related to low grades in Math. I was labeled a failure because, you see, without Math, you can’t crack IIT-JEE or any of the umpteen number of Engineering Entrance tests, and in 2008 India, one is a failure if he/she doesn’t become a doctor or engineer. It was with this ‘failure’ written all over my face that I went to watch Taare Zameen Par. And I wondered why I didn’t get a teacher like Nikumbh Sir, who would understand that I am creative and destined for great things though I suck at algebra and calculus. But it never happened. I graduated from school with a tolerably good score (to everyone’s surprise).

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Now, after seven years, I happened to watch it again. And surprisingly, being a teacher myself, I didn’t idolize the friendly Nikumbh. My sympathy went to his infamous colleagues who were bound by rules and their ordeals because of the dyslexic child which the film didn’t show. Before judging them of being insensitive and strict, one must consider the fact that they are not trained to teach special children and they work for a living, for goodness’ sake! They have a family to feed at the end of the day and they can secure their job only by making the students vomit in the answer sheet, the so-called ‘knowledge’ that has been imparted. The management is always at their neck, asking them to show ‘results’. Nikumbh, on the other hand, is a temporary teacher whose real passion is to be with children with special needs. He has had his share of experience teaching children with disorders and he has a teaching strategy for every problematic child. And he won’t really mind if he is fired. It’s not fair to compare the other teachers with him and conclude that they were all ‘bad’ teachers.

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All teachers can be like him only when the concept of ‘syllabus’, ‘deadline’ and ‘results’ become insignificant and importance is given to learning and overall development of the children. Till then, teachers, no matter how passionate they are about teaching, will always be drab and strict because good intentions don’t feed you. Results, as defined by the management, do.



  1. ywwp says:

    I liked reading about your thoughts and i think i can help you.
    Check –
    Quick Reading: Add blank space after 4 digits and limit para to 4 lines
    Your Well Wisher Program

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Aryce says:

    Fair point. But it doesn’t mean teaching has to be boring and drab.

    That just one of the examples. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Witch says:

      But if boring and drab is what the management wants, there’s no way you can do anything about it, unless you want to get fired. Whoever is running a school should have more realistic and humanistic goals. Once they stop interfering with the way of teacher chooses to impart knowledge, teaching and learning will cease to be the nightmare that it is now.
      P.S. This is applicable in only ‘certain’ parts of the world and you very well know where. 😛


      • Aryce says:

        Huh. I know there’s a syllabus and deadlines and stuff, and that they do impose on WHAT you teach, but didn’t know they imposed upon HOW you teach.

        And hey, I did have some really awesome teachers in my time too, in the midst of all the shitty ones. 😛


      • The Witch says:

        Well…I never said teachers can’t be awesome. Read the post carefully. And I’m not talking about normal kids. I’m talking about kids with learning disorder and the limitations of a good teacher when the management is insensitive. Try teaching in a reputed institution to a 11 year old dyslexic kid who can’t write his own name and you’ll know what I’m talking about.


      • Aryce says:

        Well, for starters, I wasn’t replying to your post, but to your comment, specially to the part “Once they stop interfering with the way a teacher chooses to impart knowledge…”
        And yes, you never said teacher’s can’t be awesome, and neither did I say anything to the effect of implicating you. What I meant was, even in “reputed” institution, with shitty management, there are people who can hold their own. Teaching is not a job, or a skill, it’s an art. Some are bad at it, and some are great at it. And if you are great at it, you’ll always find some way around the impositions of the management to teach the kids.

        And we all know what “reputation” is about: number of government funds/research grants the institution has, number of publications it produces, and number of famous alumni.

        But yes, teaching kids with special needs is definitely a challenge, and not every teachers is capable of doing that, but then, those kids need teachers too. So it’s a trade off between being able to teach the students they need be taught, and being able to remain sane and not lose your patience/temper with them, with your need for a job being somewhere in between of it.


  3. Manu Sudhakar Kurup says:

    Nice post. I am diagnosed with ADHD and Dyslexia very late in my life. I’m closing in on 30 and all my school life was tough because of that. Until I reached college, I had to feel the heat of being in institutions that had no clue what ADHD or Dyslexia were. TZP is a movie that opened my eyes to the larger problems and the issue of Specially trained teachers for those who suffer from these conditions. You are right in many perspectives.


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