The Lit Bug Fest took place on Saturday, 29th April. I had gone with a few friends and my mom. As I entered the building, I was greeted by some friendly faces. I went over to look at the various activities that were to take place that day. It being 11:00 am, only one activity was going on, which was the Theatre Dance Play, held by Deepali Parmar. During this interactive session, a large group of people played many games and had a lot of fun together. At the end of this, I was sweating, but laughing a great deal too. After this, we went to grab some food from the cafeteria.
Then we went and browsed through all the book stalls, hoping to find some interesting books to read and buy. Here we introduced our school, DLRC, to a few people who were keen to know about our schooling system. My friends and I, were very proud to talk about DLRC. Suddenly we heard a few of the volunteers shouting about a Harry Potter Quiz, which was going to take place. Since we all were enormous fans of Harry Potter, we rushed to join the quiz, hoping to win!! The quiz, was not as easy as we expected it to be. We got into teams, consisting of 2 or 3 people each. In my team, there were 3 people, Siya, Tarika and I. Even though it was complicated, we had a fun time racking our brains and in the end guessing the answer and writing it down. We all knew we had a slim chance of getting chosen as one of the final teams.
After this, we went to watch a humorous play, called Ande Ke Chilke (translation - Egg Shells). This was a pretty funny act to watch indeed, and I really enjoyed myself. After the play was over, we got the results of who was chosen for the Harry Potter Quiz. As we had guessed, we did not get chosen, which was fine with us, as we still had a gala time.
It was around 4:00 pm when our parents ushered us to the cafeteria, to watch and help out with DLRC’s Waste and Recycle Session. From 4:00 pm - 4:30 pm, we guided the younger children on how to make many different types of hats, from a single newspaper. Pavan bhaiya was a great teacher throughout this workshop. We then went to the book stalls again, but this time we had in mind what we wanted to buy. We bought over 5 dozen books and short stories.
Then we went into the auditorium to listen to Mr. Tejas Modak talk about his journey, and how he is now a very accomplished author, illustrator and a graphic novelist. He even showed us his latest comic book, which was beautifully written and illustrated. After giving him a big round of applause, and congratulating him, we sat down to listen to the famous Deepak Dalal. For those of you who do not know Mr. Deepak Dalal, he is a writer, adventurer and a naturalist, who has written many books, out of which he spoke about his newest bird stories, titled Feather Tale, and his adventure series - the VikramAditya books. He also showed us a vivid documentary about migrating birds.
Leaving halfway through his presentation was a hard thing to do, but it being necessary, I had to force myself to get up and go. On the way out, my mom and I stopped to drink some tea, which was very refreshing after a long and tiring, but fun and informative day.
Overall, I found the day fun, but also boring and monotonous at times. One thing I felt that the Fest was missing was some music. Also I think that if the volunteers were a bit more informed about what was going on, it would have been easier for the community. I look forward to hosting the next Lit bug Fest at our new DLRC learning Farm.
A 9th Grade Student of DLRC who loves Reptiles,Cooking (Esp. Baking) and Badminton.
Things were rapidly changing at the center DLRC at the start of the year. When we all gathered for our first day, it seemed like there were twice as many students than there were before the summer break. The Center was hardly recognizable from when I first joined while it was in its infancy. Back when there were no chairs or tables, and no students either! I recall that the student-facilitator ratio was 2:3; two students and three facilitators!
But times changed, I knew such a ratio would not be feasible, and more students arrived to divide the attention of the facilitators. Personally, I felt the Center was too crowded and noisy. There were a lot of people crammed into a relatively small space, and it took a long time to get accustomed to all the noisy kids running around.
The biggest positive for me at the start of the year was the process of selecting part-time facilitators. They called in multiple candidates for a demo lesson which the students would sit for, and they chose who got hired purely based on our feedback. This process gave the students a sense of control at DLRC, which does aim at being a student-run school.
We hit the ground running in July. Lessons came hard and fast, and assignments were difficult to keep up with. Personally, playing football for a local team made it much more difficult for me, and I had absolutely no room to breathe. Other students taking up extracurriculars probably felt the same. We had some reasonable discussions about the number and difficulty of home assignments, which did make it more manageable, but I still found myself staying up past midnight to finish work only to get up at 6:30am the next day. At least the assignments themselves were, for the most part, not a bore. Again I can’t speak for everyone, but I seldom found myself questioning the purpose of a home task.
The non-academic activities brought in mixed feelings. I only passively enjoyed art class, but looked forward eagerly each morning for my run in the park. With drumming, I didn’t quite enjoy the session at first, but over time I began to like it for no other reason than the fact that I like the whole group playing a catchy rhythm.
The SIP project was one of the low points of this year at DLRC. The aim was to have the projects led by the students, but this didn’t really work out. As the joint-head of one of the projects, I found it very difficult to delegate work, to coordinate with the rest of the group, and to motivate myself and others. In hindsight, we needed much more support and guidance from the facilitators, but at the same time more support could have resulted in spoon-feeding. Going forward, I only see the SIP projects being successful if all the students genuinely want to do it rather than thinking of it as an obligation, myself included.
Overall, it was a mixed year. I was sad to see that the relationship between students and facilitators become less personal, but this was inevitable with so many new students joining. Having a larger peer group had its own benefits, and the classes definitely do not feel too large.
I am optimistic about the coming year, hopefully it will have more of DLRC’s strengths, and fewer of its weaknesses.
Yesterday we had a meeting for deciding the sports syllabus for the upcoming year. One the the parents George joined us for the meeting. After much deliberation we decided that we will have a multipurpose half court (basketball, tennikoit etc) and another area for free games. We also decided to have staggered sports time for younger and older children.
Visit to decathlon, Wagholi to look for sports equipment.
We are also exploring ideas on this website to build a fun playground https://playgroundideas.org
-- Thank you
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