Every day at Shikshantar is eventful… with each project, each new discovery an event in itself!
Playgroup Draw of Lots for School year 2016-17
Open House Interaction in August
Draw of Lots for Nursery School Year 2016 – 17
Independence Day Celebration
A session with Sohail Hashmi
Vishvas Open House
8th May 2015
‘Vishvas Open House’ interaction is a forum where the parents and school team meet twice in a year. The purpose is to strengthen our joint understanding of how children learn and connect to their ‘self’. Over the years, the issues addressed in this session have been widespread ranging from understanding inclusion at home and beyond; sensory integration therapy; options of evaluation board ( NIOS/ CISCE); support facilitation model etc.
The theme of this session’s first ‘Vishvas Open House’ was ‘Development of social skills’. We are all aware that developing an ability of social exchange is an important component of an individual’s education in life. Many key factors such as developmental age, social and cultural context of the child, readiness and cognition play an important role in this. In the case of a child with special needs, there could be an additional delay because of her specific limitations, limited vocabulary and limited abilities to express herself.
Parents and didis were divided in small groups to reflect upon this topic. The groups were given case vignettes from the context of our children. These were influenced by real life situations that the team is aware of either in a child’s stay in school or at home. There was a thoughtful deliberation related to it. Some common points that came up were:
a. Understanding the child and his limitations is important
b. Looking at the situation from multiple perspectives
c. Dialoguing with the child and peers
d. Being considerate of the child and his/her reaction but never over compensating for the special needs
Parents and facilitators felt that the session was meaningful and it provided an insight into the kind of challenges children face in negotiating social exchange. It was also an opportunity for them to reflect on their engagement and interaction with the children. As a culmination they were given a reading material to understand and connect to their child’s world better.
Open House for Nursery
Open House for Play group
New academic session begins
The new academic session with children began on the 25th of March, 2015. With a sense of having grown up, smiles on their faces and the sheer excitement of moving to new groups, children are back in school. On the way stopping to have a look at the turtle in the pond, wondering where the fish were hiding, comparing the heights of Marshmellow, although it has been only two weeks that they had been away.
Though it seemed seamless, didis had spent a lot of time preparing children for this day and for a sensitive facilitation of the entire process. This was done through group themes such as new group elements, change, growing up, moving ahead, our new group space etc.
The movement stated with the children going to their previous groups wishing in their hearts that their didis or at least one of them would move with them. Apprehensive and eager to know who would be the new didis. ‘Vanar Years’ moved to ‘Finding Feet’.
All children were accompanied by their didis to their new group spaces. They lit a diya in the new group to embark on a journey of learning and growing.
New Parent Orientation
Training session for our drivers by Pasco Automobiles
Hamara Manch at Pre primary was a musical and colourful culmination of all that the children had built a connection with through the year. The day began with a peaceful invocation of Maa Saraswati led by the children of Kindergarten groups. The young ones of Playgroup, with their smiling faces and merry singing, won the hearts of one and all. The ‘Manch’ was an extension of their group as they enthusiastically sang and danced for family and friends.
For ‘Hamra Manch’ the ‘Manch’ took on different forms, once an ocean where the water animals swam and frolicked, another time Ayodhya that welcomed back Ram and Sita and celebrated Diwali. Then again Shikshantar itself where all children sing and dance through their day at school. Characters from a few favourite stories visited the ‘Manch’ – the ant and grasshopper were there, the baby bee bee bird, JB and Figgy two socks and also ‘The Giving tree’.
Music, songs, stories, dances, drama, along with togetherness, love, team spirit, overcoming hesitations and shyness, happiness, all these and much more visited the ‘Manch’ too !
Shikshantar’s 12th Birthday Celebration
Pre primary school celebrated Shikshantar’s 12th birthday on the 26th of September. It brought together the entire Shikshantar family to celebrate and bond in the true spirit of a large community. It was a time to share the school space and explore a variety of new experiences together. Interesting corners such as puppet making, creative movements, science experiments etc. were explored by children and parents together. This year we also had a peace corner and decided to call it ‘The change we wish to see…’ Each one who visited the corner shared their thoughts on peace and wrote them on the colourful peace flags.
The celebration culminated with all gathering in the front lawn to collectively light diyas- a symbol of life and prosperity. This was followed by children singing few of their favourite songs for Shikshantar. The evening ended with Minoti didi and Sunil bhaiya sharing their thoughts on Shikshantar with children and parents and enjoying the home cooked snacks sitting on the lawns.
The festival of Eid marked the first collective school celebration for the young children of Pre-primary block. They were excited to see the entire block assembled together in the hub area. The silver crescent moon in the centre of the hub drew the attention of one and all. Welcoming the festival of Eid, wearing their specially made caps and singing a few special songs helped them build a connection with all that this sacred festival embodies. Another highlight of the celebration was watching a few of their didis and bhaiyas enact the story ‘Ismat’s Eid’. They gathered the essence of the story and were amused to see Ismat’s trousers converted to shorts. The Eid celebration culminated for one and all with savouring of ‘meethi sevaiyan’.
The festival of Raksha-bandhan was celebrated with a lot of love and bonhomie in this block. Singing songs like ‘Aayaa raKI ka %yaaOhar’, listening to the story of Chi-chi chidiya and her family, tying rakhis to their peers and then sharing the besan laddoos with one and all, was what marked the celebration for everyone. Watching their didis tie colourful rakhis and greet each other with a hug, helped them build a connection with this festival as being an occasion to share their love with their near and dear ones, including the trees, fish and turtles. Each child carried back home a few of the many imaginatively crafted rakhis and the besan laddoos that he had made.
The children of the Pre-primary block very proudly celebrated their country India’s “birthday”. They watched the tricolour unfurl with a lot of awe and solemnly listened to their didis sing the National anthem and the song ‘Vande Mataram’. They connected to the nation’s symbols of lotus, tiger and mango through the story of ‘Chi-chi chidiya’ visiting this splendid place called India. The creative movements of Ardhi (KG) group children to the song ‘India, India’ was well appreciated and everyone enthusiastically sang the chorus line along with them. Marching back to their respective groups while Premsheela didi sang the song ‘Nanha-munna rahi’ was another highlight of the celebration.
The hub area and visitor’s area of the block looked transformed on the day of the ‘Janamashtami’ celebration. Colourful rangolis, torans, flowers and matkis were seen everywhere. Dressed as little Kanhas and Radhas, the young children sang and danced to their favourite Krishna songs. Watching the children of Vasundhara (KG) group dance to the song ‘gvaalaaoM ko nandlaala’, enlivened the experience of Krishna’s childhood for them. They also spent a few peaceful moments with their favourite Gopala, gently swinging him in his beautifully decorated ‘jhoola’.