Sunday, August 16, 2009

August 3rd Week

 Sita School

On Monday we did our run and also did a speed workout in the open fields. we did a fast loop and a slow loop to get interval training for the children. Some of the kids were getting quite comfortable with the runs and given the right guidance can surely do longer runs. After the runs, stretching and foot drills, we all moved in the class room for a project. Marco was back from his trip to humpi and this was his last day at Sita School before he leaves. So, we canceled the computer classes for the session on Sun dials. He went through a step-by-step procedure to make a rudimentary equatorial sun dial. It was quite an experience and I joined the kids in doing it from scratch. It touched upon various concepts - geometry, trigonometry, science and geography. I made copies of the write-ups he made so that I could use it in my interaction with children of other schools. I was thinking of getting the Ananya kids excited about a real life application of geometry.

More photos here- Sita_school_sundial_session

On Wednesday, we came to know that the Team Asha 4K/8K run was cancelled. We had to make the decision because of the unprecedented fear in the city and the reluctance of the schools. Moreover, in a grand event with many kids paricipating we would be putting everybody at risk. Once, we indefinitely postponed the event, we had to inform the children who had been preparing for many weeks for this event. We had a discussion with the kids about the swine flu and the event cancellation. They all took it in the right spirit. On Friday, at Sita School they had their independence day celebration as well. It was not an over the top nationalistic festival, rather it was more reflective. In the morning, during prayer time, the children had decorated with the tricolor flags and many kids even dressed up in the tricolor theme! After the run and prayers, we had a session on the heart with the elder children. Imo had built a model and had a few videos that we had to show the children. The kid who was absent in the previous class first described her understanding of the double circulatory system and she got it right. Preeti went over the structure and functionality of the heart. She discussed the four chambers, the arteries and veins that connect to the heart and the function of valves. Imo had built a cardboard model to show how valves work (by rolling a marble through the chambers, you can show that there are only particular paths that the marble can take, with the valves opening in one direction only). We also used the paper cutout to introduce the various terms and the children went through the exercise of naming and describing the functionalities. We did lots of repition to get an assessment of their understanding. Later, a more descriptive video with special animation was screened to further the understanding of the children. We had a general question and answer session and the kids had to write down their understanding of the session to be reviewed later by me.

More photos here- Sita_school_hear_ind_day

I also got a chance to observe the kids drawing images for the Sita School and Asha calendars for 2010. The theme for this year was health and physical activity in the school. It was really heart warming and amazing to see how the kids put in pictures what we do at the school.

More photos here- Sita_school_hear_ind_day


On Thursday, I informed the children about the Team Asha 4K/8K event cancellation. It would be tougher for the Ananya kids because this is the second time their karate demo got cancelled - The first time, Valley school refused to host the kids for a demo during the Team Asha 4K/8K running event. Amazingly, the kids were full of high spirits and comforted us in return! I promised them that we still would get an audience on Saturday and the kids can put up a show for us. We did a run to the temple and back and all the kids did stretching as well. As the days went by more and more kids are taking the stretching routines seriously. With some sort of competition introduced - for e.g. holding a brace and doing the abdominal strenthening routines to a count, helped get more kids attempt it.

On wednesday, the kids requested that the geometry class leave early as they had to practice dance for a performance. We decided to not do the geometry class and watched the kids rehearse. While, most of the dance moves were observed from movies or self taught, their enthusiasm was electric and there definitely was an interest to learn dance. A few volunteers living nearby had helped them choreograph and prepare for the performance. They have not had consistent training in dance and this is something that can be addressed.

More photos here- Ananya_run_dance
On thursday we split the class into two groups. One group used the compass to map the route from the classroom (computer lab) to the kitchen, while the other group did a worksheet on geometry. Without one of us going with the kids, some kids didn't take the activity seriously. But, they did plot the path and the idea was to get them to think of angles and geometry in map making as well.

On Saturday, we got all the runners training with Runner's High and Team Asha to run at Ananya. It was quite a day with heavy rains and blocked roads in the morning. But, we all finally did make it to Ananya. We did a 4K run to the main road and back. Many kids kept pace with the rather fast runners and ran 8K as well!

More photos here- Ananya_ind_day_run

After the run, the kids put up a karate demo show for an audience of about 40 odd people. The concentration and organized effort of the kids was amazing! Everyone were impressed by their skills and appreciated the effort. Then we had some tea , bananas and biscuits.

More photos here- Ananya_ind_day_run

Later, the kids put up a small puppet show to present what Ananya was about. The kids had come up with the dialogues and the whole plot for the puppet play!

More photos here- Ananya_ind_day_run
Many of us stayed back to play more games and had lunch at Ananya. It was a lot of fun and the kids got to present their skills and learning to an enthusiastic audience!

More photos here- Ananya_ind_day_run

Balu, an Asha volunteer wrote more about the events of the day in his post in the team asha blog 

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