Saturday, January 15, 2022

रंगों की दुनियाँ : काजल गोस्वामी

मेरी कक्षा में एक बच्चों का कोना है जिसमें बच्चे अपनी मनपसंद और मर्जी के चित्र स्वयं बनाकर लगा सकते हैं। आज मैं जब बच्चों को पढ़ा रही थी तो बीच में मैंने बच्चों से रंगों के बारे में पूछा लेकिन उन्हें रंगों के नाम के सबरे में ज्यादा नहीं पता था। 

फिर मैंने बच्चों से पूछा कि आप लोग क्या सारे रंग पहचानते हैं? तो बच्चों ने बताया कि नहीं दीदी हमें रंग का नाम नहीं पता है तो मैंने सोचा क्यों ना बच्चों के साथ एक छोटी सी गतिविधि करवाई जाये जिसमें कि बच्चे थोड़े से रंगों के बारे में जाने और और उनका मनोरंजक भी हो जाये।


तब मेरे मन में ख्याल आया, “क्यों ना हम रंगों का बाजार बनाए”!


जहाँ पर सभी रंग दिखते हों- लाल, पीला, हरा, नीला, गुलाबी, सफेद और काला। तो मैंने बारी-बारी से बच्चों को कहा बच्चों अपने पास उपस्थित सारे रंग निकाल लीजिए। 

आज हम रंगों का बाजार सब मिलकर बनाएंगे तो मैंने बच्चों को अपनी मनपसंद एक एक रंग चुनने को कहा और उनको मैंने कहा कि वह एक पन्ने पर उस रंग को पूरे में भरे और साथ में उसका नाम भी बताएं। 


मुझे कुछ बच्चों का नाम नहीं पता था तो मैंने उन्हें बताया कि इसी तरह एक-एक बच्चे ने अपना रंगों का बाजार बनाया और हमारे बाजार में सभी प्रकार के रंग थे। इस गतिविधि से मैं यह समझ पाई कि जब हम बच्चों को कुछ करने के लिए प्रोत्साहित करते हैं तो बच्चे उससे सीखते हैं और उसे याद रखते हैं और इसलिए आज का अनुभव मेरे लिए बहुत खास रहा।

Friday, January 14, 2022

स्त्री (कविता) : प्रिया कुमारी

स्त्री 

स्त्री माँ है, स्त्री बेटी है। 
स्त्री ही बहन है, स्त्री देवी है। 

 स्त्री धन है, स्त्री मन है,,
 स्त्री ही लक्ष्मी है, स्त्री कर्म है।

 स्त्री में ही पूरा संसार है, 
 स्त्री से विना कोई कहानी नहीं है। 

 स्त्री धर्म है ,स्त्री ही कर्म है, 
 स्त्री केे सम्मान भी पुण्य है। 

 स्त्री राग है वो ही बिराग है, 
स्त्री सुलझी हुई एक किताब है। 

 स्त्री प्रेम है वो ही कोर्ध भी है। 
स्त्री से ही जीवन भी हैं। 

 स्त्री ही सुख है ,स्त्री ही दुख है,
स्त्री ही सहनशीलता का मुरत भी। 

 स्त्री की सम्मान ही सबकी सम्मान हैं,
स्त्री का अपमान ही जग का अपमान है।

तुम रुकना नहीं चलते जाना (कविता) : तानिया

तुम रुकना नहीं चलते जाना

माना की मुश्किल बहुत है 
 पर तुम रुकना नहीं चलते जाना 
 मुश्किल को आसान करते जाना 

माना की ये कठिन है 
 पर तुम डरना नहीं चलते जाना 
 डर को मात देते जाना 

माना की जोश है 
पर पर तुम होश मत गवाना चलते जाना 
परिस्थितियां कैसी भी हो मत घबराना 
खुद को मजबूत बनाते जाना 

माना की रास्ते लंबे है 
पर तुम थकना नहीं चलते जाना 
 मंजिल की चाह में बढ़ते जाना 

 माना की हुनर कम है 
 पर अपनी हर अनुभवे से सीखते जाता 
 नई हुनर को बुनते जाना 

 माना की असफलता का कोई समय नही 
 पर हर एक छोटी सफलता को मनाना 
 सफलता जब न मिले तो उसे और बेहतर कर 
 खुद निखरते जाना 

 माना की मुश्किल बहुत है 
 पर तुम रुकना नहीं चलते जाना 
 मुश्किल को आसान करते जाना.

कविता "दुनिया" : श्रवण

दुनिया

आज सुबह यूं छत पर बैठे, सुनी दूर से आती वंदना की धुन

एक बड़ी सी निजी स्कूल के अहाते, कोई तान रहा था बुन 

मन ने सोचा, क्या होता होगा? 


जब ठीक सड़क के उस पार बने दूसरे विद्यालय का कोई बच्चा इसे सुनता होगा 

तान रोज वो भी तो कोई बुनता होगा? 


क्या होता होगा जब वो सुनता होगा यह आवाजें विश्वास से भरी 

शायद सोचता होगा, सड़क के बस उस पार है एक दुनिया बड़ी 

कुछ धोखा हुआ तुमसे, जिसकी इमारतें हो चीखती खड़ी!


पूछता खुद से, क्या करूँ जो उस पार चला जाऊं 

अपने सपनों की एक नई दुनिया बसा पाऊँ 

काले जूते, बढियाँ टाई लगा मैं भी क्यूँ न इठलाऊँ!

 

वहाँ, जहाँ खाली कमरे मुझे घूरते न हो 

विद्या के नाम, बस सरस्वती की मूर्ती न हो 


जहां मैं पढ़ सकूं, बढ़ सकूं, बुलंदियों की सीढ़ी चढ़ सकूं 

खुद की नियती को बदल सकूं, 

जोर लगा जो सड़क के उसपार मैं उछल सकूं!

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Reena, The Manager of Home and Panchayati Samiti: Priyanka Kaushik

The Manager of Home and Panchayati Samiti

An army personnel’s wife, a mother, a teacher, and an edu-leader -Reena easily juggles all these roles. She is a native of village Nariyana in Jamui district, Bihar. Along with her fellowship, she has been a member of the Panchayat Samiti of her village since 2017. She has three children and her eldest daughter is studying in class 5. 

Panchayat Samiti’s important functions are agriculture, land improvement, watershed development, social and farm forestry, and technical and vocational education. As part of her role, Reena has to visit block offices, solve the community’s problems and help in the implementation of public policies. The reason she joined this fellowship was that the cause is very close to her heart. She shared that she always wanted to be a teacher – she even has a B.Ed. degree. The fellowship sessions, particularly the learning circle session, gave her theoretical knowledge of government schemes like MGNREGA, Pradhan Mantri Indira Awas Yojana, filling the forms for AADHAR card and other government schemes. She thanks her family and in-laws for providing the required support to pursue this intense two-year fellowship.

The school in her community Nariyana already has a sufficient number of teachers so she went to a school in the nearby village Singaritad to teach students. There she got immense support from the headmaster and teachers. They gave her a free hand and she was able to use her pedagogy skills to teach – such as teaching with storytelling, real-life examples, phonics, and reciting poems. 

To persuade her students to maintain cleanliness, hygiene, and a positive environment, she started sweeping the school’s floor. This continued for just three days because the teachers and headmaster were not in favor of her doing this. It worked and the students started taking care of hygiene and the cleanliness of the school premises. 

A community woman (in the middle with her three children) sharing her children’s progress with Reena (extreme right)

A girl named Sonam Kumari, studying in 5th standard would complete her homework before the entire class. She became a role model for other students. When Reena made her the monitor of the class, there was competition among the students to do more, learn more, and practice more. 

When teaching English, Reena would teach common words using actions, such as eat, sleep, run, repeat, cry and smile. Students would practice these at home. The parents of one of the students, Rakesh Kumar, made a special visit to the school to share their happiness with the teacher – they were proud to hear their child speak a word in English. 

Reena is thankful to her mentor Smriti who helped her study English and Mathematics in the buddy talk sessions conducted during the fellowship. Buddy talk is a process designed to strengthen the buddy (mentor) and edu-leader’s relationship while tracking the progress of the ongoing processes, such as recent learning, achievements, incidents that were rare, fears, dreams, wishes, and any support they need from their buddies. 

Reena shared that it wasn’t a cakewalk for her to complete the fellowship; there were days when she had to get ready and prepare for meetings for both i-Saksham and Panchayat Samiti. Fortunately, her family, especially her mother-in-law supported her throughout the journey – Reena owes her for all the support. Her husband has been supportive since the time they got married. Reena had studied till class 10th, but her husband encouraged her to study further. She completed her 12th in 2009. As she wanted to become a teacher, she completed her graduation and B.Ed. in the year 2018 after having children. Currently, she is preparing for the teacher eligibility test CTET. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Babita, Taking Education To The Last Mile: Priyanka Kaushik

Babita, who is in the last phase of her fellowship, has impacted the community to such an extent that new edu-leaders look up to her when they talk about leadership skills, being courageous, and implementing change at the grassroots level. 

Babita’s teaching center was based in the community, while her peers were teaching in schools. Her experience of teaching in a community center reminds us that instead of force-fitting learning into the already-stressed day in a child’s life, why couldn’t school come home? Not only could this help reduce the burden and stress of both the parents and children, but it will also help create a learning environment for children in their homes and community.

This opportunity helped Babita break her preconceived notions about the local community and their daily lifestyle. She would think that people in villages don’t want to provide education and opportunities to their girls and women. She is proved right when her mother has to listen to taunts from other women when Babita comes home late by even half an hour. It would take a lot of effort and courage from many girls to improve the community’s mindset.  

Her journey started from looking for a space in the community to teach students who were out of school for two reasons – one, the schools were closed due to Covid-19, and second, some students had to do household chores with their family members.

Manish Goswami (Community Representative)

“Babita (who is an Edu-leader at i-Saksham) is making every effort in the education sector and empowering the community to be cognizant of the ground reality. Pandemic is going to have a lasting impact, especially for communities that are already marginalized. It is therefore imperative that we create solutions that can reach the last mile and Babita is one of our community leaders who is said to be successful in doing this.”

Image from first Parent Teacher Meeting (PTM) in the community  

Babita started with a class of 5 children in September 2019 and by April 2021, her community classroom had 40 students! This was a result of daily door-to-door meetings with the parents of the children. During the lockdown, she was able to teach 10 students through mobile phones. The rest of the students studied with the help of worksheets and TLMs. Currently, there are 20 students in her classroom and some students moved to their ancestral homes – this indeed is an inspiration for other edu-leaders. 

Babita, teaching community students on her center 

Babita, teaching students through Teaching Learning Materials (TLMs)

Community students showcasing their drawings

Teaching in the community center was not limited to the center itself. Babita would visit the community after classes to check on the children who had missed their classes. 

One student, Gauri, would often skip classes to pick wood from the jungle. Her grandmother told Babita that firewood is essential to cook food, so Gauri could not come to class every day. 

An idea hit Babita’s mind: why couldn’t she help them in enrolling for the PM Ujjwala Yojana that provides LPG connections to women in this community? After understanding the procedure of getting LPG connections, she convinced a few parents of her children to apply for it. Within a month that family got an LPG connection! Then the whole community started looking for this government scheme’s benefits. Gauri’s attendance is regular now. 

The second-year curriculum of the fellowship gave a push to Babita, in which the edu-leaders are taught about government schemes. It was a point in the fellowship that gave her clarity about the proper implementation of policies on the ground. After conducting surveys around government schemes, Babita found that there was a lack of awareness among people, primarily due to illiteracy.

She believes that there is a need for better coordination among private entities, community institutions, civil society, and NGOs to improve the reach, transparency, quality, and effectiveness of a scheme till the last mile beneficiary.

Currently, Babita is pursuing her graduation and wants to become a civil servant. Meeting women in village organizations, helping team members during sessions, and regularly attending webinars and seminars provided by i-Saksham pushes her further in the direction of her dream.  

Monday, January 10, 2022

Meet our Alumna Up-Sarpanch, Kiran : Aditi

 Meet our Alumna Up-Sarpanch, Kiran (Batch-2)

“Courage is the most important of all the virtues because without courage, you can't practice any other virtue consistently" - Maya Angelou.

 

Our edu-leader Kiran was a typical shy girl from a small village in Bihar. Like most girls in Bihar, she was married at a young age, as soon as she finished high school. After marriage, she decided to pick up where she left and completed her graduation. She was introduced to the i-Saksham fellowship program by a former edu-leader. Soon she joined the program with a motive to make a difference and continue her learning. 

Kiran, i-Saksham Fellowship Alumna, Batch 2 who is now Up-Sarpanch of Village Kathor
 

Kiran was an edu-leader from Batch 2 cohort of the fellowship program. When she joined the program in 2018, she felt like giving up because of her marital status. She had to fight to gain societal acceptance as she was creating her own path, unlike other married women.  


From the start of her fellowship, she showed exemplary courage to give back to society. In the last quarter of 2021, she raised her voice against baal vivah or child marriage in her village, as she found that due to the pandemic the frequency of early marriages had increased. 

 

Today, Kiran is all set to lead her community as she has been elected as the Up-Sarpanch of Panchayat Mehgama, block Dharhara, district Munger, Bihar. 

 

When we chatted with Kiran, she expressed her feeling of pride on reaching this level. 

“I was the usual gaon ki ladki [village girl] who would not go anywhere, not talk to anyone outside. After the fellowship, things changed. Now I can talk to anyone without any hesitation or fear. I learnt how to use a mobile phone and become tech-savvy. I must add that my level of confidence has increased a lot. Just yesterday I attended the aam sabha meeting and I spoke so confidently. 

When I took the oath for up-sarpanch, I felt so proud and that I can do something now. I’m looking forward to doing something for my village in the next 5 years that I will be holding this position.”

 

Kiran believes that her village needs more development, particularly in education. She wants to continue fighting early marriage and the low level of education among girls in her village. She sees how people in her village don't value education. She wants to change that and wants all children to study. As she puts it, “all the bahu beti [daughters-in-law and daughters] of our village should study. I am also one, I have studied and I’m making a change.” 

 

It was Kiran’s determination that made her win the Up-Sarpanch elections. Her consistent steps are a brilliant example of active citizenship towards educating her community. 

 

We congratulate Kiran for her exemplary accomplishment; she is now all set to put her principles into practice.