Around 12 kilometers before the city Karnal, lies a small, not much know town, Gharaunda, The head office of a new organization with great vision, Varitra Foundation. In today’s time, when general people have lost the belief in the Government Education System and are blindly following Private Education System, Varitra Foundation is working towards revitalizing the Government Education System via working with communities. It gives one goosebumps when Baljeet Yadav (Director, Varitra Foundation) asks you with his smiling face and gazing eyes, ‘If 2 or 3 people can run a private school then why can’t the whole village run a government school successfully?’ With this pure passion, rigour and vision Varitra is currently working with around 6 interior villages of Karnal District, Haryana. Where they not only fight with the hardships of resource scarcity and belief over private education system but also with the deep roots of patriarchy in the area.
Varitra Foundation recently organized a workshop program of 11 days (4th June to 14th June) to develop a better understanding of education system and skill building of their community ground workers. We, The Eighth Dimension Consultancy are blessed to have the starting two days of training where we had a session over the inclusion of drama techniques while teaching students and application of story telling to the classroom processes.
The session started with some shy yet determined faces of women from a diverse age group. The beginning activities focused over making them comfortable and worked over expressions of the participants, as this was the 1st such exposure to them. Gradually we moved towards activities centering around student attention, student participation and interesting teaching by which classrooms can be transformed into a fun filled learning space. The basic concept of Imagery, it’s relevance and possibility of application in the class using theatrical techniques was also shared with the participants. The day was light & full of activities, the participants were happy with the day, much expressive than before and eager for the coming day as the session was concluded with their responses.
The second day was about the story & the art of story telling and started with sharing of some of the story-jewels from the childhood of the participants. The session discussed what is a story, It’s structure and components, the techniques of story telling, different types of story telling and their possible use in classrooms as a method to teach regular chapters. The day was filled with stories of different types and moods, which were told by different techniques of story-telling, right from Qissebazi to Puppetry. To create a better understanding the session was filled with examples of application of storytelling to the classroom processes. The session was designed in line with the Bloom’s Taxonomy. Finally, the day culminated with an activity in which participants knitted the stories to teach regular classroom topics and performed it using the technique of puppetry. The participants were elated knowing a new technique of teaching which was reflected in the last question before saying the good bye, ‘Sir, Why only 2 days?’