A Day at Anand Niketan
"Anand Niketan is it a name of a school?" It seems to be a activity center. A school inspector remarked. We are in fact, overwhelmed to take these remarks as compliments rather a Complaint. Anand Niketan is not just a School, an activity center, it is much more than that, looking behind and beyond obvious. Are you Hesitant and Surprised? Please come, observe and experience!!! Be ready to be a part of Anand Niketan.
9.30 Morning! It's a Hallagulla time. Kindergarten students hurrying to get into the school, excited, bursting with vitality and energy need to be channelised!
This is 1st Std. class learning of Mathematics is going on. Here, students do hands at attractive material objects, to learn mathematics. Students handle Jodo blocks, Math's-mat (coloured rubber mat with holes and rectangular, triangular blocks), going beyond notebooks and pencils. In fact, they play with Math's.
Oh! Nobody is in the class? This is a second Std. class. Students are going out in surrounding to learn environment. They have already seen bushes, shrubs, and flowers. Still they are to see slab casting of a nearby building, under construction, listening to raving, shouting of labours and their hurry in carrying metal, sand and cement for concrete mixing and like that.
Mouth watering smell! What is going on here? Students of 3rd Std are in kitchen. Today, it is their "Snack /eatables/ vitriol's preparation" period.
What are they preparing? Vegetable soup! Knives in the hands of children, hurrying for cutting vegetables. Are you worried that knives will cut their hands and they will be wounded? In fact, they will learn from this, to handle knife. Is it not better to allow them to handle such sharp things than keeping them away from these? To be with them for some time to taste soup and then proceed further.
This is fourth std class, period of 'Marathi'. Period is of 'Marathi' and what these students are doing. Drawing pictures / sketches. Yeah! Teacher has given them a poem and asked them to draw and Colour, as they perceive. Twenty students drawing/sketches of same poem! Awakening their creativity and responding to that. So, what else is education other than this?
Recess after fourth period, of course, for eating Tiffin, getting together and exchanging eatables, and continuous talking! Till that, let's have our lunch. Vegetable soup has already aroused our appetite.
Students of fifth std preparing to go out. Ask, them where are they going? They are on their way to 'Nirmal Gram Nirman Kendra', Gangapur, Garbage management is one chapter in science but how can you learn / understand by just sitting in class and going through chapter? So, they are going to 'Nirmal Gram Nirman Kendra', Gangapur an institute, which is expert and doing work in this field. They differentiate / Categorize / and separate the wet and dry garbage. They construct low cost toilet. It becomes easy to understand and remember all there by seeing, observing and discussing. They carry this information / knowledge with them.