ANNUAL REPORT FOR UDAVI SCHOOL FOR THE YEAR 2007-2008
This year we moved the library to a new hall which had earlier been used as a dance room and a multi purpose hall. This is the largest place available for the library and we were able to create an environment which is conducive to quiet and concentrated reading or browsing of interesting books. Attached to the main hall of the library are 3 other rooms. One is used for project work, the other houses all kinds of charts and other materials and has a computer in it and the third is to be furnished to become the room of silence for children, who feel the need to have a space with a complete silence. Many bookshelves were built for the library.
2. THE NEW BUILDING:
Some major changes were made at the new building in order to make its use by the 4 th , 5 th and 6 th grades of our school more practical. A large raised platform was built outside the garden, to have dance practice or have morning assembly or use it for any other purpose. In the garden, two large tables with benches were constructed with cement which enables the teachers and students to work in the garden on these tables.
Furniture was created to house the wooden blocks and to furnish the resource centre of the new building. Our attempt is to make this section of the school, as far as possible quite independent of the main school building and its infrastructure so that the teachers there are able to carry out their method of teaching quite uninfluenced by the more traditional teaching methods practiced in the main building.
1. MARCH PAST:
This year we started practicing the march past two mornings a week, instead of the usual morning assembly. There has been a marked improvement in the body coordination of the students and the team is proud of their achievement.
2. WORKSHOPS FOR TEACHERS:
This year we had two resource persons who offered workshops to teachers. One was a drama teacher, Tracy Walsh, who demonstrated how drama can be used to make the class environment fun and interesting and at the same time, imparting learning to the children.
Heidi Watts also did a workshop for the Kindergarten teachers in our school and she observed all the class rooms in the new building and gave feed back for their improvement.
3. COUNSELLING FOR CHILDREN
Bhuvana, an elderly lady from Madurai whose daughter lives in Auroville joined our team this year. The task she has taken up is to meet senior students on an individual basis and understand their situation and offer them guidance in all aspects of their lives. She has also created a folder on each student which includes observations of teachers and their report cards of examinations over the last four years.
4. VOLLEYBALL School
Valery, an Olympic level coach has joined the Udavi team this year and created a Volleyball school. He has selected about fifty students for intensive coaching. The program is running very well and there is a marked change in the physique of the students undergoing the training as well as their ability to play the game scientifically.
5. EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES
This year we added two more activities which were offered to the children namely origami and book binding. Both were popular with the children and a number of children have benefited greatly from these activities.
6. AUROVILLE AS AN EDUCATIONAL FIELD:
Auroville is a very rich field of experience for the students. Our ongoing program on Thursdays, where students from one class go every Thursday to visit some activity of Auroville continues. This year we have also used some of the cultural programmes that take place in Auroville for our children. For example there was a production of a Shakespeare play in Auroville. The students of 9 th grade prepared themselves for viewing this drama. They read the play and understood the dialogues etc and thereby their viewing of the drama became a very meaningful and rich experience for them. Similarly two other dramas were staged in Auroville and the students also prepared them and watched these dramas. Our students also went to the Adhishakthi, which is a theatre company, very near Udavi where there was a puppet show and that too was very good experience for them.
7. A LIBRARY IN THE KINDERGARTEN SECTION:
A new library in the kindergarten section has been started. Books, games and other materials have been purchased to make this an independent resource section for the kindergarten area.
8. MORNING ASSEMBLY
This year, in the morning assembly, one of our Tamil teachers, told the life history of great saints from the Periyapuranam. Both the students and the teachers listened with wrapped attention to these stories. The English teacher, each Monday, selected a famous story and narrated it in the morning assembly. Both these have been a great value to the children. In the morning assembly, the classes also made presentations after finishing their projects. They explained these projects to the whole school. This has given them a confidence in speaking out before an audience as well as ensured that they understood what they were speaking about as the audience was allowed to ask them questions.