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Submitted by aditi on 28 July, 2017 - 17:12
It starts with a “DESIRE” at Aarohi.
I want to paint, I want to play Cricket, I want to cook food, I want to read, I want to teach maths to others, I want to perfect my art, I want to work with mud, I want to make mud wall, I want to make a bridge, I want to make a complicated paper art, I want to make knife stand, I want to work on carpentry, I want to install electrical box, I want to repair laptop, I want to study, I want to draw, I want to play guitar, I want to learn baking, I want to work on my spellings, I want to work on my handwriting, I want to organise an event, I want to dance, I want to invent, I want to make video, I want to stitch...It all about “I WANT”.
The desire to read. The reason was " While reading I don't read long words. I skip them". He read, he made a list of words he found difficult to read. He looked into the dictionary. He read the meaning in the dictionary. We discussed verbs and tenses when he found the words 'restore' in the dictionary but not ' restoration.
The desire to make mobile...Each mobile needs a charger, even if it is a toy mobile. Re-Creating what one sees around, absorbing has no limits. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvO9MrSmrek
Sometimes it does not start with desire. One child who likes to create, we showed him a video of making a bridge using sticks and then he wanted to make a bridge. He explored using wooden sticks and assessed self, identified own mistakes and also inspired one more child to make a bridge. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPjFh4csk0Q
Each work looks easy and desire to “repair solar water heater was one of them. It looked easy but each creation has a million stories behind. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORXhO-HGHlk
"I want to paint" was the desire. She was advised to just START and rest will follow. No guidance, no art lessons...she just started.
"I want to stitch" was the first statement. Rest was mesmerizing. He did not know how and where the needle and thread go together, where to and why to tie a knot...he remembered his grandmother doing t. He created his own style, stitching and was invisible for almost three hours.
She wanted to make chocolate. It was not as easy as 'just decide and make'. The first task was to find the recipe book of chocolate from the library. She went through few books, found other recipe books. One book with lots of text and no picture was announced 'dictionary of the food', while the other book with juice picture was identified as 'juice recipe' book. She did not find the book in the first attempt but found many other books. Imagine Aarohi which does not make the learning easy.
The desires of "I want to make Lemon juice for all", I want to make all by myself", "I also want to make, can I join" led to treat of lemon juice for all. Kids who made the lemon juice had their own journey - first, they made one glass of juice to identify 'how much sugar, lemon juice and water for one glass?". Now the same was multiplied for 30 people. 90 spoons of sugar were further converted in a unit of the bowl - One bowl had 13 spoons of sugar. Now the task was to calculate how many bowls will have 90 spoons of sugar? There was no restriction to not use any tool. First, they used a calculator and came with 2,500 bowls! Well, it did not make any logical sense for them to have more number of bowls than the spoons (small). They ran around, jumped up and down, debated and finally calculated "7" bowls of sugar. All was set, all they needed to do was to squeeze thirty hard lemons to get that perfect taste for their lemon juice. The clock was nearing to 1 pm (lunch time), the speed was doubled and all was ready in time. They felt the taste was just like lemon juice!
Imagine Aarohi where there is no teaching - because we believe that children can decide how they want to learn - on their own, with each other and from various resources, etc. We are there to guide them, where they need us.
Imagine Aarohi that is not a restaurant, rather a kitchen. We have no dish to offer. We do not serve our children any learning on a platter. We aren't cooking to satisfy the children. We're like a kitchen: Raw material and tools (resources) of all kinds are available. Children are challenged to cook for themselves, to create own learning, to explore, experiment for own reasons, to satisfy own hunger.