Q. 6

What were the special features of a pathshala?

Answer :

In a pathshala the system of education was flexible. There were no fixed fee, no printed books, no separate school building, no benches or chairs, no blackboards, no system of separate classes, no attendance registers, no annual examinations, and no regular time-table. Students were not separated out into different classes: all of them sat together in one place. The guru interacted separately with groups of children with different levels of learning. Classes were not held during harvest time when rural children worked in the fields. The pathshala started once again when the crops had been cut and stored. This helped the children of peasant families to attend school.

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