REPORT OF THE ACTIVITIES OF SRI AUROBINDO EDUCATION SOCIETY

(2001-2002)

All India Teachers Meet

Sri Aurobindo Education Society organized a one-week All India Teachers Meet from 21 to 27 Oct. 2001. 115 school teachers from different states participated.

There were various workshops, conducted by specialists, on ‘environmental awareness’ (Kamala Menon), ‘integral health’ (Tarun Baveja), ‘activity-based education in maths’ (Usha Menan), ‘parents and teachers’ (Vatsala) ‘innovative and creative teaching’ (Savithri Singh), ‘community singing’ (Shantanu Bhattacharyya), ‘art and craft’ (Ritu Dutta and Naval) and ‘Mirambika presentation’ (Mirambika team)

The day would start with yogasanas. Workshops were organized from 9.30 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. with a lunch-break in between. The evening sports included novelty games, circle games, fun race, concentration games, etc, which would be of relevance to children. Every night, there was community singing led by Shantanu Bhattacharyya from Calcutta. The integration songs were very helpful in removing the barriers between different cultures, religions and states. The participants also learnt some songs of other states.

The participants were impressed with the spiritual atmosphere of the Asharm. They felt that it would lead them to a new path of serenity and peace. The Meet was not only helpful for their personal growth but it was also a tool for national integration.

VALUE EDUCATION

Workshops on Value Education for Teachers (April to December 2001)

A series of six 2-day and 3-day Value Education Workshops were organised for teachers of Gyan Bharati School, Summer Fields School, Sadhu Vaswani International School for Girls, Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan (Mehta Vidyalaya & K.G. Marg), Kendriya Vidyalaya No. 2, Delhi Cantt., Springdales School, Pusa Road, Naval Public School, Amity International School, Saket, Ramjas School, Mt. St. Mary’s School, Bakul Sangwan Army Pubic School, H.P., Vivekananda College, Gargi College, Sri Ram School, Rajakiya Pratibha Vikas Vidyalaya, C.R.P.F. Public School, Cambridge School, Blue Bells School, Birla Vidya Niketan, Delhi Police Public School, Chinmoy Mission, J.N.U., Kendriya Vidyalaya, Kulachi Hansraj Model School, L’Avenir School, Mohanlal Dayal Vidyalaya, Mata Jai Kaur Public School, Dayawati Modi Public School, Mira Model School, Bal Bharti Public School, Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai, MIS, Mirambika and Mira Nursery School. The Resource persons were Ameeta Mehra, Swami Agnivesh, Dr Valson Thampu, Pavan Verma.

Value Education Camps for Students of Kendriya Vidyalayas (July to Oct. 2001)

A series of 2-day Value Education Camps were organised for students of nine Kendriya Vidyalayas of Delhi from July to October 2001. The resource persons were Dr Nirankar S.Agarwal, Vijay Bharti, Partho, Monica, Radhika and people from ‘Pravah’ organisation..

Value Education and Leadership Training Camps for MIS Students (15 to 21 March 2002)

3-day Value Education Camps (in 3 batches) for classes V to VII and 3-day Leadership Training Camps for class VIII (in 2 batches) were organised from 15 to 25 March 2002. The resource persons were Vijay Bharti, Radhika, Iqbal Rana, Ritu Grover and people from Jeevan Vigyan Kendra and ‘Pravah’ organisation.

THE CENTENARY OF SRI AUROBINDO’S VISIT TO NAINITAL

Devotees had gathered from all corners of India to celebrate the Centenary at Van Niwas, Nainital. The celebration period from 23 May to 1 June 2001 saw a series of learned talks. Shri Aniruddha Smart took up Savitri as his subject. Prof. Chandrasekhar Rath spoke on the basics of the Integral Yoga. Dr Ramesh Bijlani gave a speech on how to do yoga in day-to-day life. Dr Meera Srivastava spoke on the role of Mrinalini Devi in the blossoming of love in the Avataric personality of Sri Aurobindo. Dr D.N. Srivastava also elaborated on this theme and on the importance of Nainital as a holy place. Dr Prema Nandakumar spoke on the successive renunciations of the Master, as he received the higher and higher calls. Her imaginative correlation of Sri Aurobindo’s life at Nainital with Mrinalini and some passages in Savitri was interesting. Shri Prashant Khanna gave talks on The Life Divine.

The Van Niwas premises were vibrant with the melodious strains of music all through the celebration. The classical vocal & bhajan sessions with Shantanu, Devi Karunamayee, Durba, Swati and others regaled the hearts of the music lovers. There were excellent performances of the sitar and the santur by up-and-coming local musicians. The open-air Bharatanatyam recitals, against a green backdrop, by Santnu Chakraborty were delightful.

Special programmes on 28 May 2001

There was flag hoisting to the singing of ‘Vande Mataram’. The rising sun was gently illuminating the scene while Sri Aurobindo’s bust was unveiled and inaugural diya was lighted by Shri Anil Jauhar. Next came an inspired recitation by Tara didi of Sri Aurobindo’s poem ‘A God’s Labour’. Singing of a Sanskrit hymn by Shantanu and flower offerings by the assembled devotees followed. The Lord’s Presence was felt by worshipful hearts.

In the evening function, in which people from the town were also invited, a musical feature on Sri Aurobindo’s ‘Hymn to Durga’ was presented. A Hindi verse translation of parts of this moving piece of writing was sung by a group led by Devi Karunamayee, following a powerful recitation of the original by Tara didi. Then there was a short talk by Shri Aniruddha Smart which was followed by Dr Prema Nandakumar’s speech. The learned speakers highlighted the significance of the Centenary. The function concluded with prasad.

Special programmes on 29 May 2001

After the early morning flag hoisting to the singing of ‘Vande Mataram’, a havan was performed to sanctify the foundation site of the ‘Arohan’ building.

The assemblage in the evening function watched an excellent presentation of the musical feature ‘The New Dawn’ by Shantanu and his group. In a short ceremony a collection of Sri Aurobindo’s books and other literature was formally presented to the local Municipal Library. Then, after a recitation of two of his offerings by Shri Brajendra Lal Sah, the well-known poet and dramatist of Uttaranchal, there was an eloquent address by Prof. Chandrasekhar Rath. The function concluded with the offering of ‘Lights of Aspiration’ and prasad.

30 May 2001 (Visit to Brookhill House)

Early in the morning the devotees visited Brookhill House, where Sri Aurobindo is known to have stayed in 1901. After a visit to the room in which he is believed to have stayed, there was collective meditation and prasad distribution. The local devotees who had made arrangements at this hallowed building had also illuminated it during the Centenary days.

CAMPS & TOURS

SUMMER CAMPS

The Centenary Camps at Van Niwas Nainital

Just after the celebration of the Centenary of Sri Aurobindo’s visit to Nainital three 10-day Sri Aurobindo Study Camps were organised at Van Niwas, Nainital from 1 to 28 June 2001. Over 120 people from different parts of the country joined these camps.

The participants of the first camp that started on 1 June studied the Ishopanishad, on the basis of the commentary by Sri Aurobindo. Prof. Chandrasekhar Rath from Orissa was the resource person. Partho was the resource person for the second camp. He spoke with scientific precision on practice of Sri Aurobindo’s Integral Yoga, against a general background of traditional yoga. More than half of the available time was devoted to actual practice through guided meditation. Dr Ananda Reddy from Pondicherry conducted the last camp. He had chosen a theme from Savitri, ‘The Yoga of Ashwapathy’ as the subject of the camp.

Concurrent Camps for the Youth

Eight Sri Aurobindo National Integration Camps were held during April, May and June 2001.

An assorted 649 young people from various states of the country participated in these camps. They learnt to live a spiritually oriented and harmonious collective life. In ten brief days the campers learnt a large number of patriotic songs in several languages.

The morning open-air yogasana session followed by shramdan, trekking, games, the eating and living together—all helped in bringing the campers close to each other in a healthy and meaningful life. The camp activities are so organised that there is not one dull moment at any time.

At 7 p.m. every day, the participants collected in the meditation hall to meditate and listen to a lecture on ‘self-awareness’, ‘national integration’, ‘integration within’, or any other spiritual topic.

Each camp ended with a valedictory function. A cultural programme was also organised.

Nine Adventure Youth Camps were also organised in which 882 youth (mostly students) took part. They were from the MIS, Delhi, Kendriya Vidyalayas from Haryana, U.P. and Delhi, Happy Days School, Shivpuri, M.P., Gyan Probodhini, Solapur, Maharashtra, KVO Seva Samaj, Mumbai, Sri Aurobindo Youth Council, Baroda, Sri Aurobindo School, Hyderabad.

The morning yogasanas and shramdan sessions, the treks, the evening meditation and the cultural evenings were concurrent with the SANIC camps—with the same positive results.

The campers enjoyed a 5-day course in rock-climbing which is packed with fun and adventure.

Youth Camp at Dalhousie (1 to 6 May 2001)

The Youth Camp held at the Youth Hostel, Dalhousie was attended by 76 youth from Mumbai and Baroda. Apart from the morning ‘keep-fit’ and evening devotional progamme, they trekked to scenic spots like Panchkulla, Kalatop, Dainkund, Khajjiar, Chamba & Chamera dam.

SANIC at Dalhousie (6 to 15 May 2001)

112 youth attended the SANIC held at the Youth Hostel, Dalhousie. Apart from the morning yogasanas/‘keep-fit’ and shramdan, afternoon games and evening meditation, the campers learnt a number of integration songs in several Indian languages. There were talks and slide shows on environmental issues, yoga and ‘art of living’. The participants enjoyed treks to scenic spots.

SANIC at Cuttack (15 to 24 May 2001)

180 youth attended the SANIC held at Matrubhaban, Cuttack. Apart from the morning yogasanas/exercises, meditation & shramdan and afternoon games, the campers learnt 15 integration songs in 11 Indian languages. There were daily lectures on social or spiritual themes. The campers did trekking and visited Konark, Puri and Bhubaneshwar.

AUTUMN & WINTER CAMPS

Sri Aurobindo National Integration Camps

Three 10-day camps were held at Van Niwas, Nainital from 1 to 28 October 2001. The participants were 283 youth from 14 states. In ten brief days the campers from diverse language backgrounds learnt a large number of patriotic songs in several Indian languages.

Adventure (Youth) Camps

A total of 315 youths participated in 3 camps held at Van Niwas, Nainital from 1 to 28 October 2001. They came from many parts of India including Uttaranchal, W.B., Punjab, Manipur, Gujarat, Haryana, U.P., Karnataka, Delhi, etc., for a unique experience in the beautiful Kumaon region.

High Altitude Trek to Milam Glacier (19 to 28 June 2001)

A high altitude trek was organised to the snout of the famous Milam glacier from 19 to 28 June 2001. The adventurers had an extra tough time due to almost incessant rain all through. However, they enjoyed the magnificent Himalayan scenery and had a sense of achievement.

SANIC at the Andamans (9 to 19 November 2001)

A Sri Aurobindo National Integration Camp was held at Port Blair—capital of the far-off union territory of Andamans & Nicobar.

During a 60-hour dream voyage across the Bay of Bengal from Chennai the 50 campers from 10 states enjoyed the beauty of the boundless sea and glorious sunrises & sunsets. While at Port Blair, the participants visited the Cellular Jail, now a National Memorial to the valiant freedom fighters, saw the exotic beauty of the corals and colourful fishes at the Jolly Buoy island, where they also enjoyed swimming and snorkelling. The campers saw the beautiful beaches of Corbyn’s Cove and Chiria Tapu and Mount Harriet—the highest peak in South Andaman. Shramdan, meditation, group singing and group discussions were the other activities.

On return to mainland the campers also visited Pondicherry and Auroville.

SANIC at Kondaji, Karnataka (7 to 13 December 2001)

126 youths from several states joined this camp. Apart from learning national integration songs in various languages, shramdan, ‘keep-fit’ exercises and games, the activities of para-sailing, kayaking, canoeing, trekking were a great help in bringing people of various backgrounds together.

SANIC at Gopinathpur, Orissa (21 to 30 December 2001)

The activities included meditation, ‘keep-fit’, yogasanas, trekking, shramdan, community singing, talks, group discussion and sharing sessions and fun-filled cultural evenings. The campers learnt many patriotic songs in several Indian languages—expressing unity in diversity. They did a lot of trekking to interesting places, and visited Bhubaneswar, Konark, Puri and Dhaulagiri.

SANIC at Ganailo, Orissa (28 Dec. 2001 to 6 Jan. 2002)

There were 125 campers from several states. The main activities were group singing of patriotic songs in different Indian languages, ‘keep-fit’, games, trekking, shramdan, talks and discussions on national integration, aim of life, teaching of Sri Aurobindo & the Mother and similar subjects, meditation and cultural evenings. The campers did sightseeing at Konark, Puri, Dhauligiri and a few other temple sites.

SRI AUROBINDO INSTITUTE OF VOCATIONAL TRAINING

Sri Aurobindo Institute of Vocational Training offers to the youth in the age group of fifteen to thirty-five a six-month basic training in one of the 13 different trades, with special stress on practical work.

Keeping in view our commitment to National Integration, the participants were selected from several states. Care was taken to choose boys and girls from economically weaker strata of society.

During the year under report, 115 youths completed the training course in two batches; 18 left before completing the training.

In addition to the training in their respective trades the trainees attended a 10-day first aid course and English and Hindi classes regularly and participated in the daily meditation. They also did one hour of cooperative manual labour (shramdan) every day and had one hour of physical education every evening—including ‘keep-fit’ exercises and vigorous games for which we have extensive facilities, providing considerable variety.

They were taken for picnics and sightseeing. They witnessed the various cultural and educational activities on the Ashram campus. At the end of their training they attended a ten-day trekking and rock-climbing camp at Nainital.

The 6-month all round training and living and interacting in the uplifting Ashram ambience provides the trainees an opportunity for integral personality growth.

SPONSORSHIPS AND SCHOLARSHIPS/FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE

Sponsorships

The Society arranges sponsorship for a number of deserving children from low income groups for their studies in good schools.

During the year under report the sponsorship list stood as follows :

State Number of schools Number of children sponsored Sponsorship amount (In Rupees)
Orissa 13 85 4,05,000.00
West Bengal 1 7 35,750.00
Madhya Pradesh 2 17 1,29,000.00

Scholarships & Financial Assistance

The following amounts were granted :

 

1. Rs. 1,32,206 to 35 persons for their academic and other courses.

2. Scholarships to vocational trainees and teacher trainees :

(a) Rs. 1,20,800/- for 120 six-month scholarships of Rs. 200/- per month each to vocational trainees, besides free board, lodging and training.

(b) Besides free board, lodging, tuition, books & stationery, 23 teacher trainees got monthly scholarships of Rs. 300/- to Rs. 500/- per person, depending upon the year of training.

The Society gave Rs. 23,060 to the MIS for prizes to students.

MOTHER’S HEALTH CENTRE

General OPD : Males 3,748; Females 1,876;  Children 1,805. Total = 7,429.

Speciality Clinics (Weekly) : Orthopaedics, Skin, Eye, Dental, Psychiatry, Naturopathy, Cardiology, Diabetes and Ayurveda.

School Health Check-up : The MIS (1,618 students). Also MNS, Mirambika, MKV. Interactive with parents.

Twining Programme with Navjeevan Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalaya, Begampur : 870 school children checked up. 300 referrals to specialists at the Centre.

Vaccination for Hepatitis-B : 3 doses given to over 120 Aspirants/Ashramites/T.T.s at 1- and 6-month intervals.

Lipid Profile Study in collaboration with the Dept. of Physiology, AIIMS (ICMR project) : Effect of ghee on Lipid Profile studied.. The results were published in a medical journal.

Para-medical Training : 6-month training given to 4 trainees.

First Aid Training and Health Education : Two 10-day courses conducted for VTs.

INTEGRAL HEALTH PACKAGE, UTTARANCHAL (May 2001)

Eye Camps

An Eye Camp was organised at Ramgarh from 5 to 8 May 2001. Free intra-ocular surgery was done on 22 patients, and spectacles were provided to 90 patients. 300 patients were treated in a camp organized at Ranikhet on 9 May.

Dental Camp

In a camp covering Reetha & Talla Ramgarh, 200 patients were treated on 11 & 12 May. There were 100 tooth extractions.

General Medical Camps

Over 1,000 patients were treated in camps organized in 10 villages in the Ramgarh Block from 11 to 21 May. Over 400 students were also examined.

300 patients were treated and 1,200 school children examined in 3 camps in the Ranikhet Block, covering 6 villages, organized on 3, 4 & 9 May.

Special Activities in Ramgarh

Anti Tobacoo Day was celebrated on 21 May at Talla Ramgarh. Apart from field publicity through pamphlets, posters, banners and audio messages, a Debate Competition was also organized. Free check-up of 135 patients was done by a Chest Specialist—lung function was tested and counselling given.

A Lifestyle Camp was conducted from 22 to 24 May at Talla Ramgarh with the theme : ‘Dharma—Basis of Healthy Lifestyle’.

Talks & Discussions : A talk on Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga was given to 25 youth trainees on 26 May. Meetings & discussions were held with local organizations like Seva Self-Help Group, Talla Ramgarh, Vishva Bandhu Dhyana Kendra and Bhartiyam, Malla Ramgarh.

Educational Activities : 9 Mirambika teacher-trainees covered 8 Primary schools, 600 school children were exposed to art & craft, music and physical education; 120 village families were surveyed.

Training in Social Work : 30 volunteers were trained in 5 to 10-day orientation courses and 5 volunteers were given 3-week practical training.

EYE CAMP (25 August 2001)

An Eye Camp was organised at the Health Centre on 25 August 2001. 253 patients were examined with latest equipment and given free medicines and spectacles (114). 15 patients were selected for intra-ocular surgery.

INTEGRAL HEALTH FORTNIGHT (24 Sept. to 7 Oct. 2001)

In this multisystem, multispeciality camp, eye, cardiology, neurology, orthopaedics, diabetology, gastroentrology, nephrology, psychiatry, paediatrics, nutrition and dentistry specialists, as well as practitioners of ayurveda, homoeopathy, naturopathy and yoga, were available for consultation on 7 October. Before that, registration, screening and baseline investigations were carried out. Facilities for E.C.G., bone densitometry, ultrasound, etc. were available. Besides physical health, mental, social and spiritual health was also attempted to be assessed on the basis of a questionnaire. 212 patients benefitted from the camp.

INTEGRAL HEALTH PACKAGE, ORISSA & WEST BENGAL (OCT. & DEC. 2001)

Eye Camps

In October 2001 Screening Camps were held at Ganailo, Gopinathpur and Cuttack in Orissa, in which cataract cases were selected for surgery and 150 free spectacles were provided. A Surgical Camp was organized at Cuttack in which 44 intra-ocular surgeries were done. The camp served places within 50-70 km from Cuttack—Cuttack, Ganailo, Gopinathpur, Areikana, Dalijoda, Ganjam and Ersamma. The following service was provided:

Ø Patients transported from their village to Cuttack and back.

Ø Seven-day post-operative stay at Cuttack, with free meals and nursing care.

Ø Free medicines provided for one month.

Medical Camps

Five Medical Camps were held—3 at Ushagram, West Bengal and 2 in Orissa. A total of 800 patients wee examined. Apart from this, there was school health check-up and health talk.

REHABILITATION AND REBUILDING IN THE CYCLONE-HIT AREAS OF ORISSA

The Society has been concentrating on reconstruction of school buildings in the cyclone-hit region of Orissa. Apart from the value of these schools in the important field of child education in the backward areas, the school buildings also serve as shelters for the poor in catastrophic times. For this purpose, we are collaborating with the institutions mentioned below for construction of the buildings of the schools listed against the names of the institutions.

India Development & Relief Fund, U.S.A.

Construction of school buildings for the following four schools has been taken up :

Sri Aurobindo Yoga Niketan, Panikoili,

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Bishnubindha.

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Ambasal

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Matruvihar, Kadabarang

Construction of the school buildings is going on at a reasonable pace.

Swiss Agency for Development & Cooperation

Construction of school buildings and Community Based Disaster Preparedness (CBDP) training has been taken up for the following four schools :

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Pippalmadhab

Sri Aurobindo Centre of Integral Education, Raghunathnagar, Indupur

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Areikana

Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Kaunpal

Construction of school buildings is nearing completion in all the four schools. The CBDP training has benefitted the locals in making them aware and preparing them for any future calamities.

Lala Diwan Chand Trust

Construction of seven school buildings has been taken up. The schools which have benefitted are :

1. Sri Aurobindo Purnanga Sikshya Kendra, Pankapal

2. Sri Aurobindo Yoga Nilaya, Balikuda

3. Sri Aurobindo Centre of Integral Education, Amaniapatna

4. Sri Aurobindo Integral Education, Sareikula

5. Sri Aurobindo Matrusebha Trust, Kaluparaghat

6. Sri Aurobindo Integral Education Centre, Indupur

7. Sri Aurobindo Institute of Integral Education, Kalapada

Construction of the school buildings is progressing well.

EARTHQUAKE RELIEF IN GUJARAT

A sum of Rs. 2,30,000/- was sent to Gujarat in continuation of relief work started last year.

THE MOTHER’S INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL

School Results (2002)

Class X (C.B.S.E.)

A total of 165 students appeared for the class X examination. All were placed in 1st division—the average score being as high as 83.11% and 35 students scoring above 90%. There were 660 distinctions in different subjects. Tushar Garg got the highest position with 95.4% marks in the aggregate, followed by Nidhi Chauhan with 95% and Ankita Jain with 94.8% marks. Tushar scored 100% marks in French and 84% in Social Sciences, Nidhi scored 100% marks in French. Five students had 100% marks in Mathematics. Three students had 100% marks in French, one student scored 100% in Science.

Class XII (C.B.S.E)

A total of 148 students appeared for the class XII examination. 147 students were placed in the 1st division and one in compartment, whose case is being re-evaluated. The highest aggregate marks in the Science Stream were 94.8%, in the Commerce Stream 88% and in the Humanities Stream 84.8% There were 476 distinctions in different subjects.

Entrance to Professional Institutions

A good number of students have succeeded in the entrance examinations for prestigious professional institutions—10 to IIT, 2 to DPMT, 1 to AFMC, 1 to medical, 1 to NID, 7 to DCE.

45th Birthday of the School (23 April 2001)

A Talent Festival was organised in which students had a choice of participation in any of the 21 events. Prizes were sponsored by alumni of the school.

Guest Speakers

Dr Christopher Raj from JNU gave an insight into Indo-Pak relations on 26 July.

On 6 September, Swami Agnivesh spoke of the need for education with a vision and Rev. Dr Valson Thampu stressed the need for passion and commitment in the field of education.

129TH BIRTH ANNIVERSARY OF SRI AUROBINDO

Inter-schools Patriotic Songs Competition (Juniors)

Sixteen schools participated in the Competition (Solo & Group) held on 13 August. The Shri Surendra Nath Jauhar ‘Faquir’ Memorial Trophy for the best school went to Kulachi Hansraj Model School. Prachi Mehta of the host school won the 1st prize in the Solo category.

Inter-school English Extempore Speech Competition (Seniors)

The Competition was held on 14 August. Nineteen schools vied for the prizes, which eventually went to Delhi Public School, Vasant Kunj (best school) and Shaoli Dudra of Gyan Bharati (best speaker).

9th Shri Surendra Nath Jauhar "Faquir’ Memorial Open Table tennis Tournament (2001-2002) was organised from 16 to 20 August. 400 students participated from various schools of Delhi.

Times Debate on ‘Indo-Pak Ties’ was held in Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai on 17 August. The MIS got the ‘Best School’ Trophy.

Twinning Programme

The MIS and Navjeevan Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalaya, Begumpur are part of a Twinning Programme of neighbourhood schools. Eleven teachers of the MIS exchange assignments, question papers, projects and give demonstration classes in various subjects. In an Inter-House Hindi Kavi Sammelan for budding poets held on 18 August, students of Navjeevan Kanya Vidyalaya also participated.

Presentation by Invited Artists

Pt. Rajendra Gangani of Jaipur Gharana gave a lively Kathak performance on 24 August. SPIC MACAY organised a Kathakali programme by Guru Sadanam P.V. Balakrishnan on 4 September.

Awards to Teachers

Saroj Sharma got a CBSE award for Teacher Excellence. Shivani Goswami won the Lion’s Club award for Teacher Excellence.

Our Principal was awarded by the Delhi Medical Association and the Lion’s Club for ‘Excellence in Promotion of Health Awareness in Education’ while Lata Srinivasa got the award for ‘Integration of Health Awareness in Curriculum’ from them.

Tours

The following students’ tours were arranged during autumn and winter :

1. Class VI Mathura, Vrindavan, Deeg, Bharatpur

2. Class VII Mt. Abu, Udaipur, Ranakpur

3. Class VIII Nainital (rock-climbing & trekking)

4. Class IX Pondicherry

(in two batches)

5. Class X Dalhousie, Khajjiar (trekking)

Annual Day (2 December 2001)

The Annual Physical Demonstration, Dances and Prize Distribution is an event in which each and every student of the school participates. It was an evening of folk dances, drills and physical feats on the school grounds. The chief guest was Mr Justice Shivraj V.Patil from the Supreme Court of India.

Outlook Survey gives the Top Rank to the MIS

In its issue of 10 December 2001 the Outlook magazine declared the MIS as the Best School in Delhi on the basis of a detailed survey carried out by them.

Globe Weather Station

The Globe Weather Station, based in Washington DC, has set up a weather station at the MIS—the first of its kind in the country. The students take readings and keep a record of the changing climatic phenomena. The data is forwarded to the Washington office where it is analysed, interpreted and collated for a comparative study of world climatic conditions.

MIRAMBIKA

The year began on a cheerful note as Mirambika had turned 20 this year. Begun in 1980, the institution has grown to a multifaceted teacher education and research centre on integral education , while continuing to be a school. The activities that were taken up related to celebration of the birthday of the school, and the parents organised a very interesting Dandiya and get-together. This celebratory beginning continued into the year with the organisation of the sports day and finally culminating in the ‘Thanksgiving’.

The year saw the coming of several new volunteers and four new teacher-trainees. These people joined the already well-oganised team of teachers and volunteers and here began a new interaction with Kamala Menon who joined as Principal in July 2001.

 

The effort over the year was to identify the areas which needed more support, like the investigation into the ways in which mathematics, science, practical work and craft work could be made more functional. The continuing investigation into the meaning and scope of integral education allowed us to hold several meetings with the parents of the new Groups to clarify our views and further strengthen our commitment to a learning for the new age and the changing needs of the modern world. Science fairs, sense development activities, building and construction programmes were undertaken. Teachers were trained in pottery, carpentry and made familiar with monuments of Delhi.

The ‘Thanksgiving’ celebration on 19 March 2002 saw several of the qualities that we in Mirambika cherish being depicted in stories and incidents, with children singing and dancing to verse and music.

A special area of international cooperation was seen in the tireless effort of student- teachers from the Breda University in Netherlands and the GAP students from England who spent 4 to 6 months in Mirambika, introducing us to new techniques and styles of teaching and learning and sports.

Mirambika continued to provide an opportunity for practice-teaching by students from the teacher education colleges like Vivekananda and Gargi of the Delhi University. This provided an occasion for our teachers to work closely with others from Delhi and for them to understand our philosophy and see it in action.

The one sad moment was the demise of Peter in March 2002. The puppets he made remain a mute reminder of his inimitable style and even today we remember him in our prayers and during meditation.

MATRI KALA MANDIR

Number of Students

At present there are over 500 students on the roll—ranging in age from 5 to over 65 years!

Activities

There were regular classes for Hindustani & Carnatic classical vocal music, tabla, sitar, flute, Spanish & Hawaiian guitar, keyboard, Bharatanatyam, Kathak, Odissi, Kuchipudi, painting, yoga, French and German languages, table tennis and Tae Kwon Do—under the guidance of accomplished teachers.

A workshop was conducted by Shantanu Bhattacharyya, a senior performing artist in the first fortnight of May 2001, for intensive training of students in classical vocal music.

There were 10 periodical performances in which the teachers presented their up-and-coming artists. Through these periodical recitals and assessment throughout the year the teachers of different subjects mark their best talents who are given recognition through a token gift.

As a centre of Gandharva Mahavidyalaya, Miraj, Matri Kala Mandir conducted examinations in vocal and instrumental music and Bharatanatyam, Kathak and Odissi dance forms. A total of 183 students took the exams on 25 November 2001.

An inter-school competition in painting and classical vocal music was organised for school-going children (class I to X) in 4 age groups on 27 January 2002. There were 102 entries in painting, 57 in classical vocal and 30 in tabla.