Happy Teachers’ Day 2008! May we offer a piece of cake to you symbolically? In India teachers’ day is celebrated on September 5th – the birthday of Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (1888 – 1975), the second president of India – also well known as the “president of philosophers“. On this special day a kinder garden workshop took place in the school; the teachers demonstrated what is possible and practicable. Our new teacher Zakurunnisa – engaged as a temporary teacher since September 1st – has the duty – beside others - to write a brochure concerning to games, exercises and activities in the kinder garden. A booklet like this could be a valuable help for teachers of other schools when the necessity of a special kinder garden education comes to the consciousness of the public. In my point of view this will happen in the next years. A booklet like this being sold could be a financial contribution for the school as well…
Raja Shekar lets the students throw a paper cube onto a pad for writing on. They have three throws; the end result is the sum of the numbers lying on top.
The students sit in two rows opposite to each others. Every student receives a card with a picture (elephant, goat, ring etc.) Sabitha holds her hands onto the eyes of one student; one student of the opposite row has to run to this student, to pinch him into the nose and run back to his place immediately. The first student has to find out by whom he was pinched – by identifying the pictures on
"Cat and mouse“-game (in India the name is „Tiger and goat“). The small daughter of M. Saraswathi (she was born when I came to India in October 2006 to start the work with the school) stands in the center of the circle observing the action very eagerly…
M. Saraswathi gives speech to the king...
The photo shows the timetable of the kinder garden (left side LKG - Lower Kinder garden; right side UKG - Upper Kinder garden). We extended the timetable which is standard in India respectively Andhra Pradesh - consisting of English, Telugu and Mathematics - by adding some creative subjects (Rhymes; Games; General Knowledge; Spoken English). The “normal” subjects are taught in the morning and the “creative” subjects in the afternoon. Our kinder garden education mentioned above is practiced as well in the morning as in the afternoon.
Most of the schools in this country are very over-intellectual; they don’t give the permission to the kids to live their private lives. Very often the school day is starting at 6 o’clock in the morning and ending at 9 o’clock in the evening – plus the duty to do home works…The average parents like this “robbery” of childhood and are fond of the presence of their children in the schools all day long because they think their children are going to learn a lot. The teacher trainings are not sufficient; most of the schools offer only class teaching – “chalk and talk” – and theory without any link to the practice as well as repeating the same subject matters again and again (“Tuition”). Sports, arts, music etc. are not included in the normal catalogue of subjects; they are only marginal notes in the teacher training. Drill schools of this type kill individuality and creativity and make puppets of the students. The public consciousness did not yet realize that true learning is very different from drill and pressure. Concerning to these connections the Shanti Ananda School has the function of a pioneer. We want to show that children learn best who can use the head or the intellect as well as the heart or the feelings and emotions and also their hands by doing real things (handicrafts, sports, painting etc.). These children are happy because they can unfold their individuality and their creativity - the reason why they learn without big effort. Automatically they need less time to learn the same subject matters.
Our new teacher Zakurunnisa is Bachelor of Arts speaking Telugu, Hindi and English; her additional qualifications are hand works. She is planned to represent Nagaratna in the Upper Kinder garden (UKG) for two months and after to write a booklet concerning to kinder garden education.
The Surpanch (Mayor) of Mudigubba has been to the school. He took the decision that the survey has to come and to take measure of the school property. If the real size is smaller than mentioned in the official donation document the survey has to fix new boarders. With this decision we expect the neighbor quarrel because of the boarders come to an end. Now we are waiting for the survey...
The size of the school property is – up to this moment not officially confirmed - approximately 240 square meters or 5.8 cents. On the right side on top of the school map you can see our new class room – framed in red color. The class rooms at the bottom are planned to be enlarged by the area hatched in red color. The biggest class room was divided into two parts. The result is that each and every class has an own room. Nevertheless we have cramped conditions in the school – very obvious when you look onto the map.
The next map shows the surroundings of the school property (framed in green color). On the left side (framed in red color) you see the property bought by Swamy Nagananda, the school founder, six years before. The previous owner now is telling that he didn’t sell it because there are no paper witnesses. If the personal witnesses (the manager of the Nagananda Ashram Lakshmi, teacher A. Saraswathi und her husband Pulappa) are heard by the Surpanch it is possible that the previous owner has to give back the property to the Nagananda Trust. Concerning to the cramped situation in the school it makes sense to think over to purchase this property although the planned road (hatched in red color) will reduce the size. On the right side (hatched in violet color) the terrain of the railway; the school can use it; but we don’t have the right to erect buildings. The railway is not able to give it to us for sale. The property marked with „3“ belongs to the neighbor who donated the temple property – where the school is located – to the city Mudigubba in 1986. He is not willing to sell land to the school. The property marked with „2“ could be bought by us; but the distance to the school building is too big – we would have two schools…
You can see that it is a challenge to receive more space for our school activities. Because of this reason we leave both our options open. We use each and every possibility to enlarge our present rooms up to the very boarder and hope as well that a solvent sponsor can help. We need 13.000 Euro for buying a big new school area where we could build our visionary “Nature School” (look to the newsletters 2008.1 und 2008.2). Now I wrote a letter to the Emirates Airline Foundation with the request to help the school (www.emiratesairlinefoundation.org). During my last flight to Germany I was a passenger of the Emirates Airlines; the foundation
has given support to some projects in different countries.
With sincere greetings from South India,
Helga Shanti Fründt
Foreigners should give their donation to this FCRA account
Shanti Ananda Education Society
Andhra Bank, Mudigubba Branch
Account No: 185410100007532
Indian persons should give their donation to the
Shanti Ananda Education Society
Geetha Nagar, Mudigubba 515511
Andhra Pragathi Grameena Bank
Account No. 19073080607