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Monday, October 5, 2009

TFI Fellowship : As a teacher : Month 2

Updates from Manual Diary : July 2009 @TFI Fellowship

#1 .    Change so far

Observation on how things have gone SO far ......

Behaviour day 1  : or ( Typical day for the first week )


  •    From the assembly to the class 

  • ·         Typically students would come running (fighting their way up) to the class rooms.
  • ·         Least bothered about status of the class room
  • ·         They would sit randomly with their best “buddies “  .
  • ·         Interested ones on the first bench , others would sit on the last rows.
  • ·         They would keep  entertaining each other by their “cat calls”  and “shrill shouts “ – till someone comes and punishes them !!

  • >>   A typical lesson would look like “  only for the few “  

  • ·         Majority would blankly stare at you.
  • ·         Some would try to “parrot “whatever you say.
  • ·         Some would immediately copy down whatever you write on the blackboard.
  • ·         Ask any question – suggestions would come for “the other one” will answer , not me !!
  • ·         Ask them to think for 1 minute , they would “laugh“ at you– as if it were a joke to think !!
  • ·         Only thing they would stand and say is “ He /She took my this/that “ . and
  • ·         English , that would be a taboo , they just don’t understand “come here “!!

Behaviour day 50 th   (Typical in last week July )

>>   From the assembly to the class

  • ·         In line they would come , hands behind their back , one by one,   waiting  outside the class room , till Bhaiya comes and  give them their “Agenda” and “ Do Now “

  • ·         They would  arrange   the desk and benches for their Teams (4 teams in class –sprinters , singers , writers and scientists- vying each other for  Gold ,Silver stars , Flowers for helping, Krish for showing extraordinary bravery –up in their team charts )

  • ·         Would typically sit with their partners and defined teams , and start “ DO NOW” till Bhaiya says them to SPARK –( Silence , Pay Attention , Right stationeries, and Knowledge ready)

>>   A typical lesson would look like “   a lesson for SUPER 25   !! “ 

·         Everyone (well almost!) would stare at you with Expectation! –  what’ s coming !

·         Start  a new lesson, rolls their eyes (knowledge ready they are –you can literally feel it;)  )

·         In a typical lesson after the INM(Introduction to new material ),the GPs(Guided practice ) would be a absolute fun with , everyone trying to understand what is being taught , the IPs  (Independent Practice )would be somber and quiet (almost ) . Some who could not get the concept in a GP they would be hell bent to understand it individually in a IP time. Some would simply cry – they did not understand   !! ;)

·         Typical   , question time – hands raised , waiting for the turn ! , a job finished – finish sign (curling of three fingers , thumb and last one  waving ) , Understood the concept – thumbs up or thumbs down .  Asking a question – raise your hands . 

       Got  a thought – Idea time (snap fingers )

·         Typical reaction on “   he took my pencil” by  others in class –  are you in junior kg?

·         On the fighting   part, except the occasional odd behavior “  they know they are SUPER 25 ! “ and they should “Help others “ instead of fighting !!

·         English – they give their best shot .They try to use the words they know !

#2.  Way Ahead  

 This is self imposed target to be achieved by the end of next   in alignment with  THE BIG GOAL

 Language   :
Ø   Simple conversation skills : English
Ø         Using phonics to : Read and Spell
Ø   Vocab : Sight words ( at least 500 words to their personal vocab )

Math   :

Ø              Thinking math as a tool in their daily life   .
Ø           Framing Problems on their own   .
Ø         Finding happiness with numbers , fractions and operations

Science :
Ø       Developing Curiosty   .
Ø        Ability to appreciate natures wonders   !      
Ø       Ability ask questions on the content taught   !

 Little snippets from the class  :

 Thought it would me most appropriate time to share with you ,  the exciting  moments  in Our  class room .   

Bit   long , But I  am sure you would Enjoy and get into “emotions “  after reading   : )


1..  English (Vocab)   Shruti  comes to the blackboard , to read the “sight words” she reads the first two words and then she stops and refuses to  talk anymore .! she cannot read beyond first two elementary words “a” “and” . and Starts weeping like a river !

 After 25 minutes , the class is over , Shruti  again comes to the blackboard and reads ALL 20 Words ! the smile and bewilderment on her face . The Chorus clapping of the classmates and a Beeming Bhaiya (me ) , says “you have done it !!

2.   Geography - One Kid Named SUNNY is made the SUN , Nine other Kids are made Planets -with their names on the back , One is MOON ...SUNNY Staarts Crying after sometime .....WHY ? WHY ? WHY ? ....the Planets would not Quit revolving around him EVEN IN RESTROOM ;-)

3. History - Can You all Walk Like MAN in the Class ? ..Kids Walking around ERECT , one Kid -PRATHMESH ,walking with a BEND on the HIPS ..PRATHMESH why are you not walking like a MAN ? .... Bhaiya ,my mamma told me that I AM A MONKEY !!! ;-)

4.Science -Are We living things? ..Is Bhaiya a Living thing ? ---  Aditya :   (In Hindi)  Yes You are , because You are not married yet !!!

.5.Painting Competition    :  It was a Painting competition at my school . Have never worked on a Sunday before .. But this one did not seem like Work at all ! ... My Third graders are superb ..Rain drops are in apple’s size .. Clouds are all big blue dots and the house looks like punctured pumpkin. Best part was the dedication, the superb effort ,and mind you they came in the heavy rains .. felt supremely proud .

6.Typical  Home Work time  :  “ One Child  (with a sheepish smile  ) :    Bhaiya , please give me two sums  more !! ..Please Please . All in chorus : We want more homework ! ;-> .


ii)                Academic Achievements  :

                    1. Kids understand English! -they do not blink in blankness .They show reactions and emotions ! Seems like even though they may not reply in English yet , they r able to comprehend .

                 2. Maths is fun .Typical request for More Homework ..shows it ....

                   3.Science , they r so excited to know about plants ,how they cook food , How an autorickshaw needs certain other machine parts to fly ,why a traffic light is needed...

                4. Social Science :

Well best thing to learnt is "Jan Gan Man is not a Poem ! It is Our National anthem ! , What is Nation?  How many nations ? Why Nations ? ...What is Maharashtra ?  ....What is Aundh ? What is pune!!!

 What is History !  Why we walk like straight ? ......


iii)              Behaviour Achievements

Based on 4 parameters of  behavior  (introduced as Class rules )  :    Listening /Asking /Answering /Helps other  : A cumulative of 100 , class averaged out a remarkable  60 % , least being on ASKING , (primarily due to the English language barrier ) .

The emphasis on behavior  ,  being on Teach for India ‘s  core beliefs that the “ Behaviour  investment in your Kids  , go a long way to impact  their academic achievements“

Hope the  details interests you and gives a    “  subtle satisfaction “    on the   concept of OUR Mission . 

We hope to   infuse more passion and commitment in ourselves  , so as to “ work relentlessly “  for  achieving   “our BIG GOAL

 Lastly as a  parting  thought  :

“Teach For India “  Somebody asked , is it about Limelight ? ..I said , Sure it is !       We have Illuminated Hearts and    We want to Ignite Brains - It is all about "Tamso Maa Joytirgamaya "--- "Darkness to light" ..what else ..Education!

   Wait for the Next Blog ......August 2009 ...


aekta said...

Good Work...Very senti though!

SimplyRitesh! said...

Aekta ,

It becomes extremely senti .Sometimes I really wonder why there is so much of inequity . But than we should think of solutions and contributions rather than crying and cribbing ;))

Thanks for ur post .


aekta said...

The photographs are beautiful...:)

simplyritesh said...

Thanks a Lot ;) They are more emotional ;>