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Sunday, January 17, 2010

Learning about festivals with Emily and Katie


Ms Katie Coleborn and Ms Emily Connors of Winterbourne(Ridings High) School UK had a unique opportunity to spend a part of their gap year teaching pre school and pre primary pupils of Bal Bharati Public school Dwarka about festivals of their native country . It was a collaborative project where the British girls learnt not only the methodology adopted for teaching in kindergarten school but also got an opportunity to share their personal experiences while teaching about Festivals . The teachers had Bal Bharati had designed lesson plans on festivals where children got an opportunity to celebrate different festivals including Diwali , Christmas, Holi and Halloween . Children enjoyed making Christmas and Diwali decorations for their classroom where Emily and Katie helped them sharing their expertise and experiences . “It brought back memories of spending time with my parents while putting up the Christmas Tree “ said Emily who appreciated the common threads of joy , festivity and reverence for Holy spirit exhibited in both Diwali and Christmas . Kids on the other hand had fun with decorations and sweets on both occasions . They coloured Santa and Diwali Diyas with same fervour.

Pre primary school children had the maximum fun celebrating Halloween and Holi giving them ample scope to pamper the urchin in them . The Ghost party was big hit with children trying to scare the wits out of each other with their scary costumes and props. Teachers took this opportunity to address the issue of fears nestled inside subconscious of children and showed them how to have fun with figments of their imagination. Emily and Katie showed them some tricks which they had learnt while growing up in England . They lamented the fact that most families in losing out on these traditions which give family values and feeling of togetherness in the pursuit of modern lifestyle .

The entire preschool and preprimary section had fun riot with colours on the occasion of Holi . There were fun games organized which included Pichkari and balloon race and clown race among others. Everyone present was left the place looking like a veritable rainbow of colours splashed all over them . Joy written large on their faces and smiling indolently Katie said “This was the best day of my visit .I could not have experienced it had I not come here.” Both the girls expressed their gratitude for the warm hospitality and the unique Indian experience provided to them by staff and Principal of Bal Bharati Public school Dwarka.

Our links with NZ

11.Learning about NZ
Our tryst with NZ began when a group of teachers led by Principal Diana Tregoweth from Owairaka School in Auckland NZ landed in our school to learn more about India .It set the ball rolling for our explorations about NZ a country about which we knew little more than its cricket team .It was not possible for us to arrange a reciprocal visit immediately but that did not deter us from learning more about the land of Kiwis . Our teachers were quick to surf the net and train pupils in Hakka Dance which caught everyones imagination and proved the might of technology in bridging the gap across cultures .Our visitors from Owairaka School were visibly moved by Hakka welcome they received .They shared a great deal about their culture and education system and a good rapport was established within no time amost staff members on both sides as they agreed to take this mission of bringing about better understanding forward .

While planning project work for class 9 , teachers decided to focus on NZ to design a project involving multiple intelligence . The results of this project were worth the effort it required .Students came back to proudly show the gamut of information collected and displayed them enthusiastically for all parents , guests and visitors .They take pride in sharing their new found knowledge about endemic birds besides Kiwi .They know as much about NZ cricket team as Indian. They especially enjoyed making travel brochure of NZ and learning about adventure sports in NZ and the cost involved.They found biography of Edmund Hillary very inspiring .They took keen interest in finding more about mountain climbing gear and equipment used and converted its cost into Indian Rupees .Mathematics project involved taking a close look at symmetrical patterns used in NZ architecture and making graphs of population growth .They also learnt about Alternative sources of energy being used in NZ. Waitangi Day festival has become popular as children collected pictures and articles to prepare a newsletter on it .

All this project work involved the process of collection of information and its creative synthesis .Internet was not the only source of information but direct interaction with people from NZ was also encouraged .Mr David Hair author of book "Bone Tikki" Ms Perya Short Education Counsellor NZ High Commission supported our efforts . Ms Melanie Chapman(educational Counsellor) and MR Izak Human(Manager International liaison), from NZ High commission were also appreciative of the work done by pupils . We also received a lot of support and encouragement from Ms Lyn potter art teacher from Marcellin Art college,Auckland NZ who shared with our pupils the art of making Puti Puti flowers.Feedback taken from children encourages us to further this type of interaction and activities as it not only broadens their horizons and perspective but also helps them to become better communicators .We have received ample suppport and appreciation from all quaters in our endeavour to prepare our pupils for tomorrow and are geared up to take this exploration forward.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day – Radio Show.
Started on 1st December 1988, World AIDS Day is about raising money, increasing awareness, fighting prejudice and improving education. The World AIDS Day theme for 2009 is 'Universal Access and Human Rights'
Students at Bal Bharati Public School Dwarka decided to talk about the issue in the interclass Radio Show contest held on Dec1,2009.The event with a very serious theme left everyone laughing and gasping for breath as each performance outdid the previous one in terms of wit , humour and perfect timing . Still the message was loud and clear that we need to help our youngster talk more openly about an issue which has taken its toll silently crossing all barriers and borders. We need to break the silence in order to end its vicious circle

Elimination of Racial Discrimination Day

Elimination of racial discrimination day- Skit on violation of Human rights.

The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is observed annually on 21 March. On that day, in 1960, police opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration in Sharpeville, South Africa, against the apartheid "pass laws". Proclaiming the Day in 1966, the General Assembly called on the international community to redouble its efforts to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination .On 14 dec 2009 , students of Bal Bharati reminded us all about many such incidences of discrimination and abuse which form antithesis of our education system as well spirit of our constitution of our democratic nation which proclaims equal access and equal opportunity for without any discrimination of any kind. In this interhouse event students helped us to understand how basis for discrimination may not be racial alone , it can be subtle or overt on the basis of caste , creed , language , region , gender or even profession .Mr Nigel Fancourt , researcher from University of Warwick UK who was present on the occasion marveled at the use dramatics to help children understand a concept which may be very alien to them in real life .He appreciated pupils for bringing alive the trauma as well as the conflict through role play and encouraged them to raise their voice against it in a democratic honour .Ms Simmi Kher Coordinator Tony Blair Faith Foundation lauded efforts of the school for bringing education outside the classroom and making it relevant to real life .

International Flag Day

9 International Flag Day – Flag making.
Celebrations of global diversity through Flags was the main objective of celebrating International Flag Day.A project called Flags on eLanguages website invited schools to look at the history of our flags and to design our own. This idea cuaght the imagination of children and they started colouring and creating Flags .The entire school wore an “international” look with flags of all colours adorning the corridors. Puilsin primary classes were happy to clour their national flag and learn about the significance of colours in the flag .greatest enthusiasm was displayed by pupils of middle and secondary department who traced the history of evolution of Indian Flag .They gave vent to their creativity by designing flags for continents ,even one for themselves carefully choosing the colours for them. The work done by them was displayed on e Languages website where students shared their flags with peers across the globe.

World Tourism Day

6 Word Tourism Day- Bulletin board making.
Since 1980, the United Nations World Tourism Organization has celebrated World Tourism Day on September 27. This date was chosen as on that day in 1970, the Statutes of the UNWTO were adopted. The adoption of these Statutes is considered a milestone in global tourism. The purpose of this day is to raise awareness on the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide. Display boards in the school came alive with celebration of diversity which beckons one and all to put on their walking shoes and start exploring , There are destinations surpasssing in beauty and grandeur of our dreams . It is widely acknowledged that tourism is a major catalyst in the process of development of any nation .It has far reaching social and economic implications

Hatters Day

. Hatters Day- Making hats from around the world

Depending on where you live (& the way you read dates), Mad Hatter’s Day can either be June the 10th or October the 6th. So what’s the deal with Mad Hatter’s Day? Well, it’s a celebration of the character from Alice In Wonderland, & you can do this in a number of ways, but the easiest thing to do is wear a hat.
Hats hats hats. We all love hats. “If you want someone to remember you, wear a hat”Alice recounts. They are so incredibly chic & fabulous.
Of course, if you do have a great hat, this is the perfect day to wear it, but don’t feel that you have to worry . you can go minimal with a beanie or snood (pin something a little sparkly to it to glam it up!), tie a vintage scarf around
Children at BBPS Dwarka had a gala time making hats and caps which included the famous cowboy hat, chef’s hat or toque, wide brimmed sunhats.
It was great fun

Hiroshima Nagasaki Day

4 . Hiroshima and Nagasaki Day Peace kite making,
“ During the final stages of World War II in 1945, the United States conducted two atomic bombings against Japan in the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
After six months of intense strategic fire-bombing of 67 Japanese cities the Hirohito regime ignored an ultimatum given by the Potsdam Declaration. By executive order of President Harry S. Truman the U.S. dropped the nuclear weapon "Little Boy" on the city of Hiroshima on Monday, August 6, 1945 followed by the detonation of "Fat Man" over Nagasaki on August 9. These are the only attacks with nuclear weapons in the history of warfare
The bombs killed as many as 140,000 people in Hiroshima and 80,000 in Nagasaki by the end of 1945,”
These were the opening remarks of Radhika who was conducting special assembly to remember the dastardly holocaust of world War II which left the audience in stunned silence only to be broken by peace songs sung by the school choir and memoirs of the holocaust read by Vaibhav Sharma.
Students expressed their anguish through display boards reflecting their pain and made peace kites to rekindle hope for peace . This was an event which saw participation from all classes and houses as the issue of war and peace had touched a cord with everyone

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Windows to the World

.Windows of the World –

An exhibition of international projects and models made by pupils based country allotted to each class showing location on the map of places of interest , costume , food and festivals, currency , monuments and people was on display on the occasion of Annual Day of the school on 8th November 2009.The exhibition provided a unique international experience for every child of the school by opening various windows of opportunities for him to explore the world around him.
Displays included countries like Australia, New Zealand France , China ,Japan, USA, UK as well as India . Pupils impressed the visitors with their in depth knowledge about geographical , historical, political , economical and other trivial details about their project country on which they had been working during the year . Costumes and presentation by pupils were well appreciated and lauded by members of managing committee , international guests and visiting dignitaries for presenting a beautiful kaleidoscope of the world .To add sheen to the evening were enchanting girls from primary school dressed in traditional costumes to greet visitors in different languages of the world. The evening wore a festive look with a galaxy of starlets from different parts of world
Ready to take visitors on a journey of their dreams

BE The Leader

.Be the Leader –

With the aim of introducing to pupils the power of words a declamation contest was introduced at Bal Bharati Public School Dwarka BE THE LEADER It is an elocution contest at the interschool as well as intra school level where contestants make famous speeches made by world leaders . They explain the context of the speech before oration to help audience understand its impact on history of the world .

Students learn how an individual and his ideas were instrumental in shaping the history of the world.Best speakers are felicitated for the impact of the powerful ideas as well oratory skills . In this years interschool contest participants from twenty schools made epoch making speeches borrowing words from Martin Luther King to Mahatma Gandhi to Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincon Teachers from St John Fischer Catholic High School UK who were present on the occasion marveled at the public speaking talent , confidence and poise of each of the speaker who was not only eloquent but also acutely aware of the impact and import of the powerful words of his speech .
Ms Elizabeth Stanley counselor in UK lauded the efforts of the school in shaping leadership qualities in its pupils from an early age.

E Newsletter exchange

The E- Newsletter of the school BBPS Mail continues to make waves locally and globally . It is compiled exclusively by pupils of the school on monthly .it is available on the school websites as well as widely circulated among partner schools overseas. It carries news and views of children on variety of projects and issues .It provides an outlet for creative literary pursuits of budding journalists who are learn to use print media as an effective tool for making and molding public opinion about issues in a democratic society.

The exchange which was initiated with Carlton Digby school for special children as a means of improving communication skills has blossomed into a full bloom as expression of unbridled creativity of pupils. This newsletter has reached shores of NewZealand , England and Lebanon

Some of the encouraging responses to our newsletter are chronicled below
.The school continuously strives to overcome barriers of language and distance through creative use of technology .

“Finally got to look at the newsletter. Great are busy as ever.There is nothing here that even comes close to what we do in India. Tomorrow we are participating in a Read for the Record marathon where 1 million ppl over the world are reading a book. Empire state building is going to be lit up on the occasion. In our school, all teachers will read the book to their students at the same time. Senior students will go to junior classes to read to them in pairs.
Next week we have spirit week where every day, students will celebrate a different 'spirit'. Then there's red ribbon week celebrating professionals from different fields. Kidstuff, really. That's all.
Well, keep me posted.”

Ruchi Chhabra USA

. I also read your newsletter and liked it. this is exactly what can be interested for others - info about what you do in your school. It was interesting for me and would be for other students and teachers. you can publish this info with some photos in our horizon too. Have a nice day-
Kruczek Gra┼╝yna ,Poland
Hi , you are doing a lot at your school for the international dimension. If I could get a grant to visit with another colleague I would love to come and visit your school “
Rob Ford, UK

S.C.Baveja, Joint Secretary , Child Education Society India

Good initiative !

J.C.Ajmani , Advisor Child Education Soceity ,India

Great to read your newsletter.
Our students have been creating great shoes out of recycled paper and cardboard. Will mail next term when they are ready.
I also organised an international week at our school, but compared with yours, it was nothing! Well done,
Lyn Potter ,New Zealand

The school continuously strives to overcome barriers of language and distance through creative use of technology . Virtual interaction and exchange of ideas with peers across the world as proved to be boon for churning of literary pursuits who continue to set new milestone with issue of BBPS mail .

Focus on France

Focus on France- We at Bal Bharati believe that learning a foreign language in today’s world is a way to broaden the perspective for our students and help them to connect and communicate with the world. We want our French learning students to explore the language not only through books but through various interactive activities. Therefore, we celebrated FRENCH WEEK in our school in the month of August starting with an exhibition of Project work done in French on 13 th August 2009 where Napolean was vying for attention along with Voltaire and Cassini

Students had done research and made very interesting projects which included making a French menu card , making a time line leading upto French revolution .Projects work on Cassini spacecraft were very intriguing . A newsletter on French Fashion industry was certainly the cynosure of all eyes. .
Other interesting activities planned for the week included Radio Show in French , Quiz in French , Comic Strip writing in French and making a photo album in French . Pupils enjoyed creative use of their newfound foreign language skills. Experiences of pupils were shared in Assembly which focused on advantages of learning foreign language which helps to melt differences between people from various cultures

The high point in a French language class was when Dr Nigel Fancourt researcher at Warwick University saw the pictures of these activities on the blog and commented that he found them as very interesting way of teaching a foreign language .On his recent visit to Bal Bharati Public School Dwarka , he interacted with French studying pupils in class VIII and shared with them his experiences of living in France and England .Children asked him wide variety of questions ranging from French accent to French Breakfast to celebrations of Christmas in France and schooling in France.
Ms Simmi Kher, Coordinator Tony Blair Face to Faith Foundation who was present as an observer commented that it was an effective method of creating love for French language and culture where first hand direct experience is rare for children .She appreciated the efforts made by school to provide variety of experiences for better understanding of pupils.

International Cafeteria

b.International Food court

International Cafeteria was launched on 25 th December 2009 in the school campus where
Students and teachers prepared and serve delicacies from various parts of the world . A mouh watering array of delicacies represented the gastronomical delights from different parts of the world .
Smart little chefs serving with enamouring smile were hard to resist . Visiting parents , teachers and students from the whole school flocked to the cafeteria to see little hands at work
.The initiative was very well appreciated for not only for the quality of food but also for the warmth and hospitality shown by volunteers at work .

Many commented on its obvious spin off of greater bonding and sharing within families and across cultures through food which somehow is becoming a casualty in the fast pace of modern life style .

Mothers cook Book

4 International food fiesta

a. Mothers cook book .When a group of teachers from Owairaka School in New Zealand arrived in BBPS they brought with them a rare treasure a compilation of traditional recipes of New Zealand .
Ms Suruchi Gandhi proposed to reciprocate with Mothers recipes collected from parents of school students as well as visitors and friends from across oceans Ms Poonam Jain graciously offered to compile the recipes which has been a greatly rewarding experience for her as she says

“I greatly enjoyed the process of editing the book ‘Great Recipes’. Although compiling this book had its challenges but I knew the goal could be accomplished as long as I presented user-friendly information to the readers. The process started in January when the parents were asked to send the recipes for the proposed book which was to be released on Mother’s Day.
My joy knew no bounds when I came to know that this project was given to me. There was a mixed feeling of added responsibility and excitement.
After the proposal came the writing. The process is divided into various stages. From memory it goes something like this:
• Writing the introduction
• Sorting the recipes –This was the most difficult step. I received about 150 recipes and while going through the photographs and recipes , I could see and feel the emotions of mothers who had made so much of effort for their children.
• Writing the index took a lot of time. The content had to be put into various categories.
• Collecting recipes from International partners.
• Proof reading required replacing some commonly used words with technical terms and arranging and combining the steps to make the matter more precise and concise. I had to constantly consider the readers and whether the instructions and explanations were clear enough.
• When the whole book was complete it went through a technical review from language expert. I roped my colleague Deepti Sharma in for this work.
• Completing front matter and index.
Most rewarding has been the encouraging feedback from Parents and Teachers
• An authentic work, a great achievement. The book shall find a special place in many homes.
• A portrayal of true affection between mother and child.
• A good book with easy to prepare recipes which can be prepared with locally available ingredients.

Project 20-20 - exploring energy scenario

3 .Exploring energy crisis – TWENTY –TWENTY collaborative project with WINTERBOURNE (RIDINGS HIGH )school UK

When Emily Connors and Katie Coleborn gap year students requested the permission to come and teach in Bal Bharati Public School Dwarka , teachers coordinators in both the schools Ms Sandhya Kakkar and Mr Rob Ford thought this was an excellent opportunity to explore energy perceptions of pupils in both the schools through a projects named Twenty – Twenty ..Students in both the schools were given a set of 20 questions to gauge the understanding about energy consumption pattern and impact of energy crisis . Students sitting across tables were amazed at the gap in perception across continents .Some of the starling findings of the project were – the main consumer of electricity in Indian homes were cooling system as compared to UK homes were the heating system consumed maximum power, although when they compared the number of hours for electricity used it nearly amounted to same .While comparing the nature of food consumption Indian pupils felt that their food habits were more energy intensive as compared to those of their peers from UK. This is what Drishti Sagar of class 10 C one of the participants in the project had to say…

Twenty – twenty -THE ENERGY Project

The school had initiated a project Twenty – Twenty “ based on the comparison of energy consumption patterns in India and UK in collaboration with Ridings High School UK

The program constituted three main criteria:-

First and foremost being the worksheet regarding electricity bill propagation in our homes. The worksheet comprised of various appliances that we use in our homes, their number and the duration for which they are run. It was an arduous job as it involved various calculations.

Secondly, we also had a descriptive and noteworthy session where we drew out inferences between the energy consumption pattern in India and UK .It was found that because of the geographical area and cold climate, there was a higher energy consumption of central heating systems that worked for around 24hrs. a day and continuously for 7-8 months!

We also found that most of the energy in UK is generated from Tidal Energy whereas in India we have it from Thermal Power Stations .

Interestingly, we also came to know that in UK there are no power cuts whereas we have it for around 1-2hrs. during winters and 3-4hrs. during summers for a typical person living in urban areas.

Just as we use CFLs in India they use low energy bulbs and very less tube lights.

Last but not the lest we conducted a debate on whether ‘Nuclear Energy Is A Viable Form Of Energy?’ Emily and Katie were quite impressed by the depth opinions of different students who took part in the debate.

Quite a lot of students were in favor of the Nuclear Deal as it is the only option left after electricity generation from hydro energy, tidal energy, solar energy etc.

However, the greatest threat in using nuclear energy is the production of radio-active wastes and lack of dumping grounds for toxic substances .

The discussion was quite informative for them as well as for us as it influenced the mutual learning and understanding between both the nations.


Summarizing in the words of Mr Rob Ford. Head of International Dept/IB at Ridings High School
“It has been a life changing experience for Emily and Katie and they have a real passion for India now and a bigger and better perspectives about life and world “

The girls Aishwarya and Drishti Sagar of class 9 who hosted Emily and Katie learnt something valuable for a life time

“During these days we developed a long lasting relation with the two girls Emily and Katie, where we came to know a lot about each other. We comprehended countless things about the lifestyle of peers in the UK .We came to know that in UK from the age of thirteen only children start doing part-time jobs which make them more confident and independent. Not only this but also compared about the facilities provided to the students in the school .
In short, this experience of intermingling with two girls from the UK was very enjoyable and very useful , whose results are nothing but a ongoing friendship which are sweet and lingering memories that we all would cherish throughout our life.

X – C

Dress me up

10 .” Dress me up “day –Dressing up as famous personalities

If you’ve always dreamt of rubbing shoulders with Napolean Bonaparte, Robin Hood, Alladin, Joan of Arc, Heidi, Alice, Tom Sawyer or Oliver Twist then Bal Bharati Public School Dwarka is making your wildest dreams come true! The “Dress Me Up” project for Pre School pupils was a unique International peagent of personalities from across the globe .Nowhere else could one come across crying Robin Hood being rescued by Alice in Wonderland. Russian, Chinese ,Japanese , Arabian and Taiwanese all nationalities were speaking the same language of love , peace and harmony of the world which they are yet to explore . The beguiling smiles won hearts and citations for so beautifully conveying such poignant message to the world

International food court Day

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Making Tofu salad on Japan Day

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