Incorporating the 4Cs (Collaboration, Critical thinking, Communication and Creativity) in learning does sound fancy and interesting but making the children work together is a challenge. I recently observed a BeeCreative class for the students of Grade 6 at Kaasthamandap Vidyalaya. The students were divided into teams of 4 and had to come up with their own games using only paper cups. Later, using a rubber band tied to four strings, they had to build a tower without directly touching the cups and the rubberband.
Category: blog (page 1 of 7)
Dear Karkhana Family,
Today is December 25, 2017. It’s Christmas and I stayed home all day. My initial plan wasn’t this. I wanted to go to work, see what gifts my Secret Santa got for me and also take a wild guess at who my Secret Santa was.You know, get into the holiday spirit like everyone else across the globe. But, like I often say, life isn’t a wish granting factory. I didn’t step a foot outside today.
My past few days here at work had been filled with the buzz of “Secret Santa”. I was really excited. Everyone was. I mean, it’s Secret Santa. Who wouldn’t be excited? A few close ones shared with me who their “Santee” was. “Do you know who is my Santa?” This was the question everyone asked everyone. I had a hard time keeping a straight face while answering this. But I saw a few people smoothly answering the question which often left me speechless. The Christmas buzz in the air wasn’t something you could easily deny, at Karkhana. The seasons greetings could be felt in the air itself.
6th December, 2017 is my scariest day at Karkhana till date. I didn’t see a ghost, I didn’t get hit by a truck, I wasn’t ghosted by anyone. It wasn’t because I broke someone’s heart. It wasn’t because someone else broke my heart. It was because I was scared.
Starting off the day by going through the gallis of Ason and getting things ready for the Sports’ Day after coming at Karkhana, the day had a good start unlike most days. There we were prepping up for this and that and what not. Carrying tables on top of our heads, getting our hands covered with the white cement, making sure the riddles were ready and so were the treasures. It was a mixture- of rush, of excitement, of anxiousness, of memories, of challenge and of determination.
If you even remember bits and pieces of your school days, you might certainly remember that one particular student in your class who would rarely say these things out loud, but always behave in certain ways that would hint at: “I don’t like to talk to anyone”, “I will just stare at the wall all day”, “ Why do we have group projects?” and so forth. Here, I am speaking of those particular students who found it difficult to ask for the teachers’ help even if they were having a lot of trouble understanding what was being taught. Here, I am also speaking of myself – a good decade old me.
I recently went to Olympia World School for a classroom observation. As our BC teacher Ms. Sangden began her class on “LED and Craft” with an interesting story, I was looking keenly at the students- watching their expressions change, listening as the room filled with a little laughter. I noticed a student sitting alone at a desk that could easily fit in 4 students. I did not wonder why. Seeing him like that made me nostalgic. The old picture of myself back at school became more vivid than ever before. A part of me was scared and another part of me was also curious to see how he would do the activities in the class as, in BC classes, students are split into teams where they have to come up with ideas, then work on them and then share their project at the end of the class.
On November 4th, 2017, a report card distribution was scheduled at Paragon Public School, Tilganga. While the students and parents were definitely feeling jittery because of the usual “report card day blues”, there was also a lot of excitement and buzz at the school yesterday. Keeping up with the vibes and energy at the venue, a team from Karkhana was all set to make the day a memorable experience for everyone present.
Taking forward a new and interesting idea of organizing cluster based Design Challenge (DC), we prepared and planned out Design Challenges for the students of Grade 5 and 7, that were based on the clusters: “Structure and Stability”and “Fun With Electronics” respectively. Letting students figure out ways in which they could take learning outside their classrooms and think of finding out solutions adaptable to real-life scenarios was our main aim for doing this. Two Design Challenges: “Shake Table” and “Traffic Awareness” were run simultaneously, both of them starting at 10AM.
Karkhana started off as a team of 5-6 members. It had a few set of teachers and a limited number of students to work with. In the small team, it was easier to see the growth and keep track of the progress of all individuals. To see how a person was growing as an individual was easy which made it easier to see the growth of the team itself. But now the team has grown and expanded to a larger team of people. We have members from multiple backgrounds:
With the target of putting together a fun-filled day before the Dashain break actually kicked off, Karkhana came up with the idea of Karkhana Mela. After weeks and weeks of planning and bringing together a set of activities that could be done during the Mela, the big day eventually arrived. Read more
On September 15th, 2017, the Storytellers at Karkhana were headed towards Shree Indree Vidya Mandir at Panchkhal-3, Ziro Kilo, Kavre. With the primary goal of sharing learning experiences to the students of the school, we had taken with us a few of our lesson plans and presentations, which we had a really fun time sharing with the students. What did we do on that day? If this is a question running in your mind, I would like to walk you through what really happened there. Read more
Recently I have had social media on my mind. Several thing in my life have conspired to put it there. First, with a spate of new Maker Mentors, many in their late teens, hanging around Karkhana I finally have some people to friend on Snapchat… so i decided to get myself on Snapchat. As someone who predominantly favors words, it has been interesting to try to craft narratives in a medium that is primary about images. It has also been interesting to learn a whole new set of norms while figuring out what kinds of narratives are considered native to the medium.
On Saturday, 2nd September 2017, students of grade 7, 8 and 9 from John Dewey School came to Karkhana at 10:30 in the morning.
After a brief introduction with the Storytelling Team, the students were split into two groups and taken for Karkhana Tours. Not only did they look around at our working spaces, but also asked a lot of questions regarding how Karkhana operates and how contents are designed and taken to schools. It was also really interesting to see the students analyze our working place in terms of its design and architecture. Having experienced a devastating earthquake two years ago, it was quite obvious for them to be concerned about what Karkhana had to go through during that phase. After a brief tour, the students moved to the Mural Room for their cluster-end preparation class where they worked in teams for certain projects and also prepared for the paper presentations. Read more