Programme on Art & Craft in Integral Education

Programme on Art & Craft in Integral Education

Date: 14 Jul, 2018
Location: District Institute of Education and Training (DIET), Lawspet, Puducherry

ICIE-A&C-DIET-Jul2018-1An Art & Craft in Integral Education programme was conducted with 100 teacher trainees of the District Institute of Education and Training (DIET), Lawspet, in Puducherry in which there was active participation of 30 teachers and 70 teachers attended as observers. The session conducted on July 14, 2018, was focused on how to develop an aesthetically rich and age-specific environment in school wherein children themselves become more inquisitive and volitionally come forward to learn. In the session teachers were also given an experience of integral development via Arts & Craft.

The session started with indoor games which help in developing alertness, concentration, awareness, eye-ear coordination, gross motor skills, quick response, etc. All craft activities were divided into two groups – one which could be taken up by children and the other by teICIE-A&C-DIET-Jul2018-2achers to create the necessary environment for learning.

During reflection the teachers realized that these activities could help promote a sense of beauty in everyday life and develop intrapersonal and interpersonal skills. They also remarked that such processes could be instrumental in enhancing the senses and faculties such as fine motor skills, imagination, observation, sharing, attention and concentration span, etc.

The session was conducted by Art in Education Enthusiasts Kiran and Hrishikesh – both practitioners in the field of Integral Education.

Teacher Education Camp on “Innovative Pedagogical Interventions & Creative Teaching Aptitude”

Date: 02-Jul-2018

Location: DIET Lawspet & Sri Aurobindo Society SHARANAM Amphitheatre, Puducherry

A five-day Teacher Education Camp on “Innovative Pedagogical Interventions & Creative Teaching Aptitude” was held from July 2 to 6, 2018, in Puducherry for Master Resource Persons of the Ministry of Education, Puducherry. Twenty-nine participants underwent a transcendental journey through this camp on the experiential learning approach to Integral Education. The Camp was organized and conducted as an additional programme of Sri Aurobindo Society’s transformative educational programmes initiated as Rupantar.ICIE-TEC-Jul2018-01

Day 1: Introduction to Integral Education

The Camp began with the inauguration ceremony that created the necessary atmosphere for understanding the Integral Education System. The session on day one that was conducted by Dr. Prabhjot Kulkarni, gave all the participants an insight on the five aspects of Integral Education and its significance in today’s world. Special emphasis on spiritual education widened everyone’s perspective and sensitized them towards the need for innovations in teaching and the learning processes.

Day 2: Implementing Integral Education – I

This session, which was facilitated by Ravi Shanker, showed the possibilities of making learning and teaching processes experiential and integral through Theatre Arts. Participants were sensitized towards the need to invoke the unitive qualities in teachers and children in order to have a conscious, compassionate, creative and inclusive society. Through the process of theatre arts, teachers were taken into an inner journey to expand their understanding of their core values and innate qualities that are nourishing and conducive to their integral development not only as teachers but also as unique individuals.

Day 3: Implementing Integral Education – IIICIE-TEC-Jul2018-02

Beginning with reflections the group was taken into a creative learning spree through a “Project-based learning approach”. The day’s session was conducted by Ravi Shanker along with Kiran and Hrishikesh. Teachers explored the processes of theatre, arts and craft as means for teaching Mathematics, Environmental Sciences and English. The entire process sensitized them towards their role as compassionate and creative teachers and elevated them to the summit of their consciousness.

Day 4: Preparatory Yogasanas, Pragmatic Approach to Teaching English & Music in Education

Kiran began the fourth day’s session with preparatory Yogasanas amidst the serene natural beauty of SHARANAM. Following Yogasanas our participants refreshed their understanding of the principles of true teaching via a contemplative reading session with Dr. Prabhjot Kulkarni. They also enjoyed exploring ways of teaching English through various games.

Second half of the day was facilitateICIE-TEC-Jul2018-03d by Shoba with a brief introduction and continued with an interaction on the idea of music in the minds of the young teachers. Participants were also shown how musical vibrations help in super activation of the brain as well as in memory retention, calculations, concentration and perception. Everyone present explored the musical aspect of their self and recognized the hidden form of music they inherited.

Day 5: Creative Approach to Teaching Mathematics, Redefining and Expressing Aspirations.

Assimilation and Plan of Action

Following a brief concentration, participants explored with Kiran an enjoyable and creative way of teaching the four operations of Mathematics using natural resources such as dry leaves, pebbles, sticks and dry flowers. During reflection they realized that these activities could help in developing observation, imagination, concentration, discrimination, creativity, fine motor skills, aesthetic sense, the sense of touch and smell, accepting each other’s ideas, working as a group, etc. At the end of the session, participants enjoyed creating collectively an artwork using the same available materials.

Another session on the creative use of Abacus was conducted by Hrishikesh. First, they were facilitated to craft their own Abacus using discarded house-hold materials; they then enjoyed exploring with their newly created Abacus, the four operations of Mathematics. Here too they could discern that these activities, besides making Mathematics fun, helped in developing ICIE-TEC-Jul2018-04observation, imagination, concentration, discrimination, creativity, fine motor skills, aesthetic sense, the sense of touch and smell, accepting each other’s ideas, working as a group, etc.

After experiencing the joy and beauty of Mathematics, the participants were taken into an inner journey by Dr. Prabhjot Kulkarni. They expressed the very significance of their names and aspirations via craftwork which helped them to widen their self-knowledge.

Finally, the Camp culminated with deeper reflection which resulted in chalking out their plan of action with regard to implementing all the innovative practices learnt during these five days, to foster the integral development of their children. With vibrations of renewed enthusiasm and joy and fresh perspectives, they celebrated their valediction.

Feedback ExcerptsICIE-TEC-Jul2018-07

We had a different experience on the first day which I was not used to earlier. I felt like I was rushing aimlessly. First day’s session made me think that I need a pause to rethink – who am I?
G. Subashini, GPS Nonankuppam

Now we can use both games and music to teach different subjects . . . we thoroughly enjoyed the integrated teaching method which will be very useful because while teaching EVS, we can teach English and Maths too . . . learning outcomes are 100% possible through this method and apart from learning outcomes, there are numerous things they will learn. . .. Now we can take a classroom to the next level from conventional to joyful and child-centred method. . .

In this technology-driven world, there is no time for us to be with our self. After this session I get to know the importance of self-awareness . . . It was a wonderful experience to feel the beauty of silence and learn to teach creatively with activities. . . This method will make children more aware and alert . . . It is useful for all subjects.
K. Senthamizhselvam. PST, GPS,Thirubvanai

I learnt about how to use natural materials tolearn Maths and how it can give happiness to children . . .
R. Senthil Kumar, GHS Kanuvapet

Theatre which has song, music, dialogues, sets, costuICIE-TEC-Jul2018-05mes, etc. will nurture Children’s integral growth which eventually will lead him to be a good human being. . .. This can be used to learn language, mathematics and other concepts, etc. Children also become good observers . . . Theatre is a fantastic way of learning Integral Education. There is a need and this is the time that we teachers can use these Interventions in our schools. . . We can sensitise children towards everything because sensitisation is the need of the hour. . . Since we are integrating the subjects it will help us to work smart. Children will be having an all-round development . . . For each and every lesson we can try this pedagogy. We can combine the lessons from various subjects and inclusively we can try these creative teaching approaches. 
G. Subashini, GPS Nonakuppam

Abacus session conducted by Hrishikesh was wonderful. This may be conducted for one day completely.
K. M. Ramyasri, Govt. Primary School, Kamaraj Nagar

Loved the session conducted by Kiran on physical exercises and the surroundings at Sharanam gave a lot of joy in learning new things.
G. Mangalambigai, GMS, Keezhur

Morning yoga session was really admirable.
K. Kalaiselvi, GPS Irulansandai

We do not give much emphasis to the physical and the spiritual part in our education system which may be the root cause of the frustrations we teachers and students experience. Hence it is very important that we incorporate integral education in our education system.
K. Meenatchi, PST, GPS, Pethuchettipet.ICIE-TEC-Jul2018-06

Learnt to use natural resources to teach four operations of Mathematics and how to work on children’s physical, vital, mental & psychic aspects. It’s an easy method to teach basic operations of math.
N. Vani. P.S.T, GPS Kirumampakkam

The practical session on implementing Integral Education through project-based learning environment was very much enjoyable . . .
G. Siyamala, GMS, Nallavadu

Drama in groups will give us opportunities to get out what is inside the students . . .
N. Vani. PST, GPS, Kirumampakkam

I learnt some new things about engaging students in a play way/activity method. I learnt about how to convert the content into a play. I learnt how to make craftwork faster in five minutes as part of theatre pedagogy. It’ll be really very useful for our children and for us too. It will sensitize the children towards what they learn. 
R. Senthil Kumar, GHS, Kanuvapet

Abacus session was very good and I learnt a lot. 

The session was useful and enjoyable. I can help our children to do and learn without insisting. . . Also incorporating values through lessons and daily life . . . doing new things as a team . . . and teaching through music or music in education can provide various supports and promote children to learn easily . . . and build social responsibilities.

Karthikeyan.R, GPS , Narambai

Had a good exposure and experience in Integral Education. Loved the “Name game” – really helped to find out my inner strengths. 
G. Manglambigai, GMS, Keezhur

Implementing the method of making drama for any lesson in EVS, English and Maths is my plan now. It will help us to meet the learning outcomes to a greater extent. 
K. M. Ramyasri, GPS, Kamraj nagar

We learnt how mathematics calculations was done by the object which we collect from the ground. Abacus was taught nicely. . .

M.Suresh.T, GMS, Sanniyasikuppam

Integrated learning will make children realise that all the subjects are interrelated and related to life as well. The expected learning outcome can be achieved with multi-sensory approach introduced by the resource person.
ICIE-TEC-Jul2018-09V. Manjuparkavi, PST, G.S.P.S, katterikuppam

Concentrating without any distraction for the whole day is not that much easy. Ravi Shanker sir proved it is possible . . . these approaches will help us to give opportunities to our students to act as leaders . . .
K. Adirai, GPS Kurusulcuppam

Sometimes I find it very difficult to complete the syllabus . . . the integrated learning will be very useful to meet the learning outcomes in all the subjects… I feel yoga may be utilised in our educational process regularly as it will be very useful for our children. Music, Brain juggling, Arts & Craft and Abacus widened my creativity and I want to learn more regarding this. 
D. Shankara Devi, GPS, Archivakpet, Lone-3

Antaram – A Meaningful Pause for Solutions in Education

Date: 09 Jun, 2018
Location: Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, Delhi Campus

A two-day education conference titled ‘Antaram – A Meaningful Pause for Solutions in Education’ was held at the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IIT Delhi), organized jointly by Unnat Bharat Abhiyan and Vision India Foundation on June 9 and 10, 2018. About 250+ young change-makers, committed to nation-building, participated.

ICIE-ANTARAM-Jul18-2The organizers and facilitators of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan (UBA; a Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India programme to uplift rural India, launched in collaboration with the IITs, National Institutes of Technology [NITs] and other leading government engineering institutes from across the country) and Vision India Foundation (VIF; founded by alumni and faculty members of various IITs) have been working on holistic interventions in government schools in villages in and around Delhi. The interventions were preceded by visits to several schools all over the country known to deliver education differently and catering to the holistic needs of children, such as the Muni International School (Delhi), Jnana Prabodhini (Pune), Riverside School (Ahmedabad), Rishi Valley Education Centre (Chitoor), Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education (Puducherry) and more. Incorporating all these experiences, this team developed the concept of a conference on education, titled ‘Antaram – A Meaningful Pause for Solutions in Education’. Two young fire brand workers, Naman Asha Bansal and Rovin Pushp, with their team, put in the hard work under the guidance of Professor Nomesh Bolia and left no stone unturned to make the event a success.

ICIE-ANTARAM-Jul18-1The contributors and participants to the Conference included leading educationists, thinkers, practitioners, representatives of visionary schools across India, grassroots leaders, teachers, principals, civil society representatives, education entrepreneurs, change-makers from central and state governments, including bureaucrats and central & state ministers, and leading organizations who have been working to find meaningful solutions in education in India.

Shivakumar, Director, India Council for Integral Education (ICIE, the educational wing of Sri Aurobindo Society), was invited to participate and deliver a keynote inaugural talk on the topic ‘Understanding Education’. In this introductory address, he emphasized on the need to relook at the present-day education and also question the true content of a meaningful education. By presenting the varied aspects of a true education, he explained how it has to give information about the world outside, but also put the child in touch with the world inside and help to master it. Through examples, the connection between the outside world and the inner world was brought out, laying the foundation for an integration of both, through an Integral Education.

ICIE-ANTARAM-Jul18-3In his concluding interaction through another session, Shivakumar took the participants on a journey to look for the ‘Source of Happiness’ and a discovery that it always comes from within – we just need find our own ways of connecting with it. Throughout the two days, the participants interacted freely and came up with some deep, thought-provoking questions too. Shri Matri Prasad and Shri Devdip Ganguly representing the Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education (SAICE), Sri Aurobindo Ashram, shared the ways in which education is imparted at the Ashram school.

ICIE-ANTARAM-Jul18-5Other speakers included, Professor V. K. Vijay, Unnat Bharat Abhiyan; Shri Rajendra Singh Baghel, All India Head, Trainings, Vidya Bharati; Shri Naresh Pal Gangwar, Secretary (Education), Rajasthan; Shri Nand Kumar, Secretary (Education), Maharashtra; Smt. Saumya Gupta, Director (Education), NCT Delhi; Shri Dilip Kelkar, Punarutthan Trust, Dr Nomesh Bolia, Naman Bansal and Rovin Push, Vision India Foundation & Unnat Bharat Abhiyan, IIT Delhi; Shri Prakash Anna, Principal, Isha Home School, Coimbatore and many more esteemed educators and education facilitators.

A video of the inaugural Talk on “Understanding Education” (30min.) delivered by Shivakumar is available here.

Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra – Monthly Report (June 2018)

Date: Jun, 2018

Location: Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra, Bishnupur, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal

Bishnupur-Jun-18-2Our school reopened on June 6, 2018, following the summer vacation. This month was eventful as apart from the regular classes held, the school introduced French Language classes for its students on June 21. Both teachers and students of KG-II, Class-I and Class-II have started attending the French classes with great enthusiasm. The class is being taken every Thursday by a teacher, who is an ex-student of ‘Knowledge’ in Puducherry.

It’s a proud moment for Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra, Bishnupur, as it recently got the second best award of RCC District (3291) in Education for its tremendous contribution in the field of education.

Bishnupur-Jun-18-1Meanwhile in our regular classes, special emphasis was given on implementing Integral Education. To develop the power of sense organs, different musical pieces were played and students had to identify the instruments. They also tried to identify different fruits via touch, taste or smell, with their eyes blind folded. And in the E.V.S class, students learnt the names of different animals, their group, size, colour, habitat and food.

From June 25 to 29 June, 2018, our students prepared for their second term exam to be held later in August. In the vital class, a love for the country was inculcated in the students by showing audiovisuals of the lives of Sri Aurobindo, the Mother, Rani Laxmibai and Mother Teresa.  The children also made beautiful creations in their craft class.

Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra – Monthly Report May 2018

Bishnupur-Jun-18-1On May 9, 2018, Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra in Bishnupur organized a special event to celebrate the birth anniversary of world-renowned poet, Rabindranath Tagore. Students performed a number of dances, songs besides reciting several Tagore poems. Teachers also sang several songs – Rabindrasangeets – and gave brief talks on the life of the poet and his immense contribution to the fields on literature, music and several other areas. The event was a huge success and a joyful one.

Full Report

Annual Workshop: Basic Course in Integral Education – Theory & Approaches

ICIE-IEW-Jun18-03Sri Aurobindo Society has been conducting annual workshops on Integral Education for more than 30 years. This year, it was organized under the title, ‘Basic Course in Integral Education – Theory and Approaches’ in two parts, with Part I from May 16 to 23 and Part II from May 24 to 26, 2018, for teachers, school principals, administrators, trustees and parents caring for children in the age group of 3 to 12 years (Pre-Primary and Primary level).

Full Report

Workshop on Integral Education at Mirambika School for New Age

ICIE-MSFNA-Jun18-1Shivakumar, Director, India Council for Integral Education, conducted an intensive two-day workshop on Integral Education for teachers of Mirambika School for New Age (MSFNA), Bengaluru. Around 45 teachers from Pre-Nursery to Class X, along with the Principal of the School, Sharadamba C R, participated in the workshop.

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Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra – Monthly Report (April 2018)

Bishnupur-May-18-2Bengali New Year is celebrated by a large number of people throughout the country every year, and our school too marked it this year on April 15, 2018, with great joy and enthusiasm. The rehearsals began early from April 1 to 13, 2018, and students practiced every evening during their first-term exams. Students of Sri Aurobindo Siksha Kendra and Bishnupur Uchchal Probaho jointly performed drama and dance through the day and sang numerous Bengali songs apart from reciting rhymes. The evening turned out to be a very successful one.

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Interactive Programme on Integral Education for Management Representatives of Various Educational Institutes in Nashik

SHiv-NashikShivakumar, Director of India Council for Integral Education (ICIE), conducted an interactive programme on ‘Introduction to Integral Education’ for the management representatives of various educational institutes in Nashik on April 17, 2018. The event was organized by Bejon Desai Foundation’s Educators Academy, Nashik, Maharashtra, as part of their educational work to bring about a transformation in the society. Dr Ashwinikumar Bhardwaj, Director of Bejon Desai Foundation, took the lea in planning and coordinating the event.

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Guidance Programme for the Students of Mayo School, Ajmer

ICIE-Mayo-Apr2018-POn March 26, 2018, Sri Aurobindo Society conducted a session of orientation on Sri Aurobindo, the Mother, Sri Aurobindo Ashram and the Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education (SAICE) for the students and faculty of Mayo College Girls’ School, Ajmer. About 100 students and 10 teachers from one of the premier girls’ school of India were on an educational retreat to Puducherry.

Full Report