Q. Why do we have names for our classes?
A. Every class in Shikshantar has a distinct identity influenced by the facilitators and the children (and in some ways by the parents). Each group has a name. The groups are named after the elements – Water, Wind, Earth, Fire and Ether – to help children of all ages build enduring connections with the philosophical, social, historical, poetic and sometimes political understanding and interpretation of the elements. The purpose is to enable children to establish deeper connections with the quintessential energies of nature. And through these connections we hope children will grow to forge deeper bonds with the environment and Mother Earth.
The green ecology of the school campus inspires children, facilitators and parents to build direct connections with nature in many different ways.
For every group, one or more themes are organized around the group name. Theme work allows children to sing songs, write poems, read historical contexts, research old and new thoughts, construct stories, explore mathematics, science and social science – in the context of their group name. A child enrolled in Playgroup or Nursery has the opportunity of visiting each group name/element every five years at least three times in their school life at Shikshantar.
Q. What are our groups called?
Playgroup…..Dewdrops, Raindrops, Boond
Nursery……..Pawan, Vayu, Purvayi, Anila, Avir
Kindergarten…….Bhoomi, Dhara, Vasundhara, Avani, Ardhi
Class I……….Ambar, Aasmaan, Neelambar, Aakaash
Class II………Agni, Pavak, Surya, Aagun
Class III………Neer, Megha, Varsha, Brishti
Class IV………Luft, Purva, Fiza, Wara
Class V………..Earth, Prithvi, Pritha
Class VI……….Space, Ether, Cosmos
Class VII………Aapi, Afroz, Azia
Class VIII……..Aqua, Tarang, Zarya
Q. How are the parents involved in the child development?
Parent involvement and education is a central part of the school calendar. Parent involvement with Shikshantar begins from the day a parent seeks admission in the school and continues in significant ways through each year for all classes.
For new parents, the key experiences include reflection about why and how Shikshantar will support the development of their child; understanding the school’s philosophy and educational approaches through a school tour and school counselling sessions and familiarisation sessions with the children who are expected to be enrolled in the school.
With enrolled parents, the following experiences encourage involvement and participation
• Parent Orientation Session for new parents before start of school year
• Interactive Parent Open-House Interactions for each class three times a year
• Parent-Facilitator Meetings held twice during the school year to share and reflect upon the progress of each child
• Progress review meetings at the end of each semester for every child
• Parent-Teacher Association Meetings to share institutional progress, concerns and suggestions
• Parent representation and involvement in the School Managing Committee
• Parent volunteers to support field trips and school events such as Hamara Manch and Hamara Mela
• Parent representation for talks and workshops for students on specific areas of expertise
• Parent representatives work with school committees on specific areas that include transport management outside the school during arrival and departure, and recommendations for safety and security of children
• Parent volunteers for substitution during long absence of teachers
• Parents are invited to be a part of their child’s birthday celebration in school
Parent Open-House Interactions
Open-House interactions are facilitated for parents in each class three times a year. The purpose of these interactions is to enable a stronger connect between the home and school, and for parents to reflect upon their evolving parenting roles. Each session is organised as a workshop to understand and learn from multiple perspectives and experiences.