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WORKSHOPS
 
Tapping the sun for a brighter future …
On February 18 DevanshiThakkar and Krishna Sheth of Grade 9 attended a Seminar on “Solar Smart: City and Citizen” organised by the Society for Clean Environment (SOCLEEN) in association with TESCO Global Foundation Vadodara wherein the Chief Guest was ShriSaurabhbhai Patel (Hon. Minister for Energy , Govt. of Gujarat).
The resource persons focused upon making sustainable use of energy, including providing information about how Solar energy can be used for roof top water heating as well as cooking. Indeed a commendable effort to edify the future citizens of the country!

All about hygiene …

JalpaThakkar (Campaign Manager – South Gujarat) from Procter and Gamble conducted a session on ‘Daughter Hygiene Program’ for girls of Grade 6 and their mothers.

The purpose of this talk was to make these girls aware of the various physical as well as mental changes that takes place once they have attained adolescence.
Activities for mothers and daughters were conducted which helped both of them to understand the importance of proper sanitation. Such endeavors will definitely help our girls to lead a healthy and happy life!

Whiz kids on the block …

NavarachanaVidyani’sAtal Tinkering Lab had organized ‘Utkranti‘ a 2 day workshop (February 16 and 17) for students of Grades 6 to 9 .

The students not only got an immense exposure in understanding the making of circuits, Aduino Uno and sensors but also learnt to make line follower robots and home automation project using IOT (Internet of things) . An initiative, truly worthwhile!

A window to our musical heritage

On February 6, Vidyanians of Grades 8 and 9 had the unique opportunity to attend a lec-dem by sarod maestro PanditParthoSarothy and Tabla accompanist UstadAshis Paul.

The event was brought to NavrachanaVidyani by (Society for the Promotion of Indian Classical Music and Culture Amongst Youth), a non- profit nationwide voluntary crusade that promotes Indian classical music and dance and other aspects of Indian culture in educational institutions as it believes that 'culture defines character'. Our students were indeed fortunate to take in the mesmerising performance of the two virtuosos!

The two musicians had lectured briefly on their instruments and the various 'swars' by way of a prelude to their spellbinding demonstration. Subsequently, in the inter-active session, the enthused audience addressed numerous questions related both to the performance and also about classical music in general. It was indeed gratifying that the programme objective of cultural sensitization and enrichment of young minds had been fulfilled so completely!!

Art... Connecting the Mind and the Heart!

Mr. ManojRana( Masters in Dramatics, Faculty of Performing Arts- MSU) conducted a session to activate the aesthetic instincts among the students of Grades 3-9 , on January 27. In an interactive session, the Freelance Theatre Artist presented his elucidation of the nuances of Theatrics like posture, voice modulation, using the space and expression.

The students went back better sensitized towards the spiritual property of Art.

Rendezvous with the virtuoso ...

Cyrus Dastur, (founder of Shamiana Arts and Short Films producer), conducted a session, on January 22, to make the Vidyanians aware about the evolution in the world of short films. Shamiana is basically a platform for showcasing short films and therefore students of Grade 7 to 9 got the wonderful opportunity to watch four short films – Girl Child Education(Silent Film), Leela (Silent Film), The Balance and Sing (Oscar Winning Best Live Action Short Film at the 89th Academy Awards).

All these films had a significant message to impart to the society, thus highlighting the important role that short films play in both Hollywood and Bollywood. The students got a unique opportunity to understand the nuances of Short Film Making. With such exposures soon, Vidyani too will have its creative geniuses!

Heart on the sleeves ...

Mr. VivekBhrambhatt conducted an interactive session on January 9 for the students of Grades 4-9 to orient them about the ways of enjoying a sustainable and a fauna -friendly festival. With MakarSankranti around the corner, it is important that we are all aware of the hazards of our unrestricted enjoyment on the other lesser beings. In the session, various ways and means of celebrating the vibrant festival of kites were discussed without harming the environment. The students went back pledging to be their sensitive-best during such celebrations!

Widening Horizons ...

On December 23, Grades XII (Science & General) visited Navrachana University, for an orientation on the path ahead. They were informed about the various avenues awaiting them and the various Programs relevant to their respective courses. Besides getting a feel of the college life experience, the students were also taken around the campus to view the architecture studio, the amphitheatre, the designing studios and the science labs.

Designed to Change …

The Design for Change (DFC) I CAN Award 2017 was hosted at National Institute of Design(NID) Campus, Ahmedabad over two days, 9th and 10th December 2017. Students and teachers had separate workshops on both days followed by the award ceremony. The first day Master Class with Celebs for Teachers was conducted by Rahul Bose, DFC brand ambassador, and RajdeepSardesai, Consulting Editor-India Today Group, who spoke on how important it was to instill happiness in children. They spoke on how teachers’ roles have evolved from just being teachers to becoming mentors and role models and suggested how parents too should take up the responsibility of instilling values in children.
The students in their different groups were made to do activities which forced them to think out of the box besided having to specify the learning outcome.The day’s session ended with a photo session of each ICAN Team with Mr. Rahul Bose.

 
 

The next day teachers' session was conducted by AmeHaque, the initiator of www.storywallahs.com, who held forth on the art of storytelling and the importance of integrating storytelling in regular academic subjects. This would help children of all age groups to become imaginative, be good listeners and evolve into good citizens. This was followed by a workshop facilitated by AmeHaque and Deepak Pathania, an Industrial Designer from NID, wherein teachers had to create a prototype to help a differently abled person sit on a chair and get up too. Also a prototype to help in accomplishing kitchen tasks was to be created. The final product was a collaborative effort of all teacher groups.
The Vidyani students, in their session, after the initial orientation, were divided into different groups comprising members from other participating schools and they too made prototypes that would help the differently abled in the kitchen, followed by a few of the selected groups presenting their ideas at the closing ceremony. The event ended with an energetic and rhythmic drum fest.

Truly the two days offered unique learning opportunities to Teacher SurbhiUpadhyaya and VidyaniansDevashish Amin, TirthChauhan, Khushee Dave, Jyeshtha Shah and Jay Maheshwari (Grade11) !

Asking the Right Questions ...

SharadSagar, the founder and CEO of Dexterity Global conducted a session for a group of students of NavrachanaVidyani and NISV on December 9. Besides gaining valuable quizzing tips, in an interactive session, the students acquired a sneak peek into his life and achievements which included his visit to the White House! He shared about his engagement with institutions like UN Youth Conference and UN Children Conference which left the students motivated.

Managing Exam Stress …

Workshop for Std X and XII students on scheduling before exams and managing exam stress conducted by Mrs. GeetaSikdar, Head Mistress, Navrachana Pre-Primary on November 4.

Educators' Outbound Learning ...

Fifteen of the Vidyani educators went to Inox to view the screening of the Gujarati movie, 'Best of Luck Lalu' on November 3. An insightful critique of the present day , 'marks- oriented culture' , the movie offers to the parents and educators a cognizance to the pressing issue of parental and peer pressure and their repercussions.

Apart from gaining important value education, the staff also had theopportunity to meet the entire star cast of the movie!

Deliberating upon the right moves

Dance Teacher Nilesh Parekh was one of the presenters at the paper presentation on the topic, 'Role of theory and practice in Indian Classical Dance'. The event was organised on January 29 by the Bharata College of Fine Arts & Culture, Mumbai, and featured dance researchers from across the nation. Additionally, his was also one amongst four papers to be selected for presentation at an international conference to be organised in Mumbai shortly

Such programmes certainly offer knowledge sharing platforms and so contribute greatly towards keeping alive our rich culture and heritage.

Connoisseurs of Art …

Art teachers Anita Parte, PratibhaMacwan and Zaida Jacob had attended a four day (February 8 to 11) Craft Workshop as a part of the Vasantotsav organized by Maharaja RanjitsinhGaekwad Institute of Design (MRID) .

It served as a platform to interact with Craftsmen, other C teachers and Art enthusiasts. The teachers attended varied sessions on these four days where they got to work with a range of mediums like Bamboo, Glass and Metal as well as Block Print.
Such workshops definitely equip our teachers to make Vidyanians more creative and innovative!

 

An endeavour to boost the teaching learning process …

Teachers PramilaThapa and AparnaGawarikar attended a 2 day workshop (February 15 and 16) on ‘Innovations in Science and Mathematics Education’, conducted by Community Science Centre, Vadodara in association with Vikram Sarabhai Community Science Centre, Ahmedabad.

The resource persons dealt with Theory and demonstration of simple teaching –learning materials to tutor Algebra , Physics and Chemistry.
Suggested methodologies when incorporated, will surely make the classroom an interesting place for students!

 

Student Enrichment Programmes

Connecting with Aesthetics The recipient of 'Nritya Shiromani' and 'Kal Ke Kalakar' awards, Ms. Dhwani Mhaskar (Assistant Professor, MSU) conducted a workshop on August 26 for 40 students of Classes IV to X. The session focused on 'Abhinaya - the art of communication' through skillful use of traditional gestures, postures and facial expressions of classical dance forms because non- verbal communication with the audience can be more effective than even verbal ones. Thus, it was a unique way of impressing upon the students the importance of non-verbal communication in our daily interactions with others.

Later, on September 12, 35 students from Classes VI to IX visited the Faculty of Performing Arts, MS University, where they were taken around the dance, music and tabla departments to give them a feel of the field of music and dance as areas of higher study. Through their interactions with the faculty and students there, Vidyanians gained a better insight into the professional prospects of pursuing dance, music and other related fields as viable career options in the future.

Such initiatives, designed to expose students to our rich cultural heritage, will be regularly undertaken in the future too so as to develop the aesthetic sensibilities of Vidyanians.

V-CAP: Making Differentiated Learning happen
The United Nations (UN) General Assembly has approved the adoption of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development. The resolution recognizes the importance Sustainable Tourism "in fostering better understanding among people everywhere … thereby contributing to the strengthening of peace in the world".

And acknowledging the role of education in contributing to global peace and mutual understanding, Navrachana Vidyani has incorporated this theme in the V-CAP(Vidyani Collaborative Anusandhan and Pradarshan) programme for the session 2017-18. For this, throughout the year, students Classes I to IX have been researching about various heritage sites and ways to promote sustainable tourism.

Group A, comprising the younger children of Classes I to III, have been researching about places on their visiting wish-list, besides compiling information about sites they have visited last year and what their observations were about those places. These students will also prepare an itinerary for a tourist on a visit to the city.

Classes IV to VI form Group B and their main area of research is all about how to develop sustainable tourism in Vadodara. Students have already done a case study of a tourist spot in Gujarat and in the upcoming Pradarshans (Presentation) the students will prepare a road map for sustainable tourism in Vadodara and would also delve into the economic, social and environmental issues that tourism impacts. Group C members, who are the students of Classes VII to IX, are doing research work on the same lines as Group B, with the difference that, as befits their older age group, they are working on how to bring about sustainable tourism at the State Level.

The scope of the learning outcomes is immense as this program will promote understanding of how efforts made at the local level can improve the environment, the economy and the quality of life of citizens. Simultaneously, sustainability will also be the focus so as to promote tourism that is both environment and people friendly. There is also the immense beneficial fall-out of educating Vidyanians about their own rich culture and heritage and how to ensure its preservation and continuity. And, of course, as the Programme structure itself guarantees, students will not only reap the benefits of collaborative learning through combined Anusandhan but the different modes of Pradarshan will ensure that the Multiple Intelligencies of children are also catered to in actual practice!

Young techies in the making!
Today, 43 girls from Grades 6 and 7 participated in the 'Girls4tech' (G4T) signature program of MasterCard based on its STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) curriculum. Held at Hotel Surya Palace, the hands- on, inquiry based activities helped in exploring the technologies that underline the foundation of any business. The program also offered participants an insight into the many possible STEM careers that exist, as well as the diversity of skills and strengths that go into being a STEM professional. The G4T thus aims to serve as one of the many steps in a child's journey towards assessing his/her strengths and interests and choosing possible career goals. The interactive programme, based on global Science and Math standards, covered the concepts of Algorithms, Big Data, Digital Convergence and Logical intelligence. While the girls had a whale of a time playing at being fraud detectives, cryptologists, system analysts and big data scientists, alongside they learnt about these key concepts that are of absolute relevance to life as it is today. Life learning but fun-filled . An unbeatable combo indeed!
Outbound Learning...
Kaivalya Pathak (XI) attended three of the informative sessions of ' The Red Brick Summit – 2017' (Annual Management Symposium ) at IIM, Ahmedabad from September 29 to October 2. The workshops included, 'Operations Management' conducted by Amazon India, 'Design Thinking' conducted by Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship IIMA and ,'The Art of Creating Successful Brands', conducted by Mr. Madhukar Sabnavis, Vice Chairman and Country Head, Discovery and Planning, Ogilvy and Mather India. Among the Resource persons were dignitaries like Mr. Deep Kalra, Founder and CEO, Make My Trip, Ms. Anjana Ghosh, Director Marketing, Bisleri and Dr. Shivkumar K., IBM Research – India, IBM. It was certainly a great learning experience for Kaivalya.
The Clean up Act ...
Under the mission, 'Swachhata hi Seva' , N K Bakshi, representative of the ICICI Foundation for inclusive growth - Disha Trust, conducted an interactive session for the students of Grades 7-9 on 3rd October 2017. Besides creating awareness among the students regarding personal hygiene and sanitation, the aim also was to sensitize students towards the related issues prevalent in the surroundings and motivate them to play stronger civic roles in the society to guide the unenlightened sections. Vidyani, thus, contributes towards the creation of good samaritans.

Faculty Enrichment Programme
Fitness initiative was continued after the School reopened for teachers after the Summer vacation. That time round, Yoga was the route to ensuring the holistic well being of the staff in preparation for the commencement of the new academic session. So, from June 12 to 14, the day began with a Yoga session conducted by a team of Trainers from YogNiketan. The aim was to teach some basic asanas and correct breathing techniques so that teachers could enhance their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health as regular practice of the same would serve to relieve stress and build up stamina. Naturally, it follows that this would also enable them to give their best in the classroom, besides being able to properly guide students during yoga, relaxation or meditation sessions.

A laudable initiative indeed by the School for the welfare of students and staff alike. An educator's job is truly demanding and ensuring wellness goes a long way in facilitating peak performance.

Integrating cutting-edge learning technology

Teachers Pramila Thapa and Purvi Arora attended the Workshop, 'Total Learning Summit', organised by Extra Marks (a new-age digital learning solutions provider) on August 19. The objective was to help teachers to understand the need to bridge the gap in delivery of learning from school to home with the help of Extra Marks Total Learning. The Resource Persons also added that by using this software, students will no longer have to buy costly educational resources for home study. Participants also brainstormed intensely on other ways to bridge the gap, besides the Extra Marks software. They deliberated on the various challenges faced in doing so and came up with possible solutions for the same.

A really enlivening Workshop that provided teachers with a range of strategies as take-away from the Workshop proceedings!

Articulating through art

On August 19, Art Teachers Anita Parte, Pratibha Macwan and Zaida Jacob attended 'Articulate', an Art Workshop, presented by Pitambar Publishing Company and Rising Sun Publishing Company and hosted by Navrachana School Sama. Resource Persons Madhumita Nandi and Rupina Anand focussed on the study of art and how to integrate Art in teaching of other subjects. The participants also deliberated extensively on the need to introduce effective techniques of Art at age-appropriate stages besides discussing strategies to involve more and more children in activities related to Art by devising methods to awaken their interest in the subject.

Vidyani's policy of framing the teaching-learning methodology based on the Multiple Intelligence of students will surely receive a fillip with such workshops.

Training the Trainers

Atal Tinkering Labs (ATLs) are designed to ignite students' minds by exposing young innovators to essential world skills and by getting them to think out of the box and find solutions to community problems by practical application of technology. Under the guidance of Principal Sonal Verma , the Navrachana Vidyani was the first school from Vadodara to receive the ATL grant.

So, to hone their skills as ATL Trainers, Shweta Mandal and Rachana Agarwal, attended a 5 day Teachers' Training Workshop from August 28 to September 1 at 'Best School', Ahmedabad. In this initiative by NITI Ayog, conducted in partnership with INTEL, 28 teachers from 14 schools of Vadodara and Maharashtra gained a better insight into the integration of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) into the curriculum. Team Leader Anup Rawat, along with Resource Persons Akshay Chawla and Ronak Jogeshwar, mentors at Ahmedabad 'Best School' ATL and Chandigarh ATL respectively, imparted hands-on training in working with sensors, circuits, 3D printing and IOT (internet of things).

The Navrachana Vidyani curriculum prioritises STEM education and since Tinkering Laboratories enhance the programme, this experience has greatly enriched the two educators' skills in conducting activities that will serve to foster curiosity, creativity and imagination in young minds.

An opportunity to witness the ensemble of innovative minds …
Teachers Rachana Agrawal and Shweta Mandal attended National Science Teachers' Workshop organized by Anna University, at Chennai from October 14 -15 . This workshop brought about many innovative, dedicated, passionate and award winning teachers on a single platform to share their experiences and put forth the future road map for the country. Participating teachers like Prof. H C Verma (an Indian experimental physicist and a retired professor at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur), Dr. Achutshankar S Nair (Head Incharge Dept. of Computational Biology and Bioinformatics) and many more showcased the innovative methods of science teaching, based on the subject themes and ideas. The workshop included panel discussions on various aspects of teaching-learning practices as well as the effective tools for comprehensive and continuous learning of science. The participants of the workshop also discussed the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) inter linkage and policies to make education for nation building. Vidyani teachers thus got an opportunity to not only hone their skills but also further realize that teachers not only impart knowledge but also shape the values and ideals of a modern nation .

Positivity in the air

Itis rightly said the philosophy of the wisest man that ever existed is derived mainly from the act of introspection. So, as the First Term drew to a close, the Vidyani educators followed suit, guided by Principal Sonal Verma in a three-day Workshop (September 14 to 16). The sessions were designed to motivate the faculty to work in unison towards the common goal of imparting quality education to the students. For this, prompted by their Principal, together the teachers introspected and then brainstormed on the various factors that had either aided/hindered the successful implementation of the teaching-learning strategies formulated by them. This exercise was crucial as it helped the faculty to prepare a road map for the next term based on the outcome of their reflection. The Workshop also facilitated a positive self-image and fostered a sense of togetherness among the staff members due to which teachers felt secure, confident and well equipped to take on the challenges of the coming term. Thus, apart from facilitating their professional development, this initiative also enhanced the self-worth of the educators which will surely translate into more efficacious transaction of learning.

Gearing up, continues …
As they say, 'A change is as good as a rest', the Vidyani staff is ready to rumble the next session as it turns over a new leaf. To make the most of this transition time, various orientations and workshops are being conducted with the aim of pedagogical upliftment. The first session today was on the 'Atal Tinkering Lab', its working and the requirement of a trans disciplinary approach towards identifying problems which can be then addressed by way of involving the students in brain storming and capitalizing on the facilities provided by the Tinkering Lab. This was followed by a short bout by the Computer department in facilitating the computer proficiency of the educators. Vidyani , indeed, exemplifies a progressive education.

Student Enrichment Programme
Sessions on Deaddiction
Classes IX and XI, in different sessions spread over three days (October 13,14 and 18) and later Class XII on November 22, learnt about the physical and mental health hazards of drug addiction and also that it not just devastates the victims, but their families too.

Dr. Nirja Shah (Dentist and Founder Member, 'Yes we can' NGO), in collaboration with Mr. Prinkit Patel (Founder, 'Change Vadodara Campaign' NGO) and his team, through the medium of various videos outlining real life addiction cases, oriented students about potential situations that may lead adolescents into drug addiction and the unpleasant repercussions there upon.

In the second session, Dr. Yogesh Patel (MD Psychiatry and Baroda District Head of the 'Sadhiyaro' NGO) explained the undesirable psychological and biological changes that occur due to substance abuse, smoking and alcoholism.

The concluding session focussed on reinforcing the anti-addiction message sent out in the previous two sessions and was highly interactive with students posing queries and clarifying misconceptions.

This initiative was thus Navrachana Vidyani's contribution towards ensuring a drug-free society where young people would not succumb to the adverse effects of any sort of addiction.

 
'Live Like Kalam'
On October 22, as a run-up to the 'Kalam Youth Conclave', a team of volunteers from the 'Youth for Seva' organisation (a nation-wide volunteering movement that inspires the youth to serve their community) oriented Class XI about Dr. Abdul Kalam and his life. Then, on October 23, Natasha Sanjeev (XI Sc.) attended the Kalam Youth Conclave on the theme 'Live like Kalam -a step towards sustainable living'. The Conclave was organised with the aim of instilling in youngsters the high aims and ideals that Former President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam stood for throughout his illustrious life. The take-homes for Natasha included the reminder to set a goal one loves and then to put in hard work to attain it, never letting anyone say that it's impossible to achieve and, further, to forget the past, live in the present and build the sustainable future one has envisioned both for the self and the nation. A principle that we should all live by and one that manifested itself in every act of the great visionary!
 

Creating awareness about First Aid
Resource Person Darshana Patel from the Red Cross Society conducted a workshop on November 17 to emphasise the importance of First Aid as the first line of defence. Notably, this workshop happened due to the initiative taken by Dev Patel (IX A) and it helped students of Classes VIII and IX to understand the crucial role of First Aid in saving lives. Ms. Patel also explained to the participants, through numerous illustrations, demonstrations and discussions, the importance of prioritizing in handling multiple injuries.

Truly, a wonderful initiative by a socially responsible Vidyanian!

 

The Robot builders
Robokidz, one of India's finest Science and Technology Skill Development Company, conducted a Robotics Workshop, 'Robotics Premier League- 7th Edition', for 84 students of Classes I to IX. In the workshop spread over two days, December 14 and 15, students were trained to build both Wired and the Wireless robots. Additionally, they also learnt about the components of the development board and 'BASCOM' (a Programming language), both important components of robotics.

The Workshop surely helped to enhance the technical skills, scientific thinking and innovation of the participants, thereby enhancing the School's effort to equip students for the digitised and technology driven present times.

 

Workshop for the digerati
On December 16 and 17, the extremely informative 'Cyber Security and Ethical Hacking Workshop' was conducted in the School by Resource Person Khushank Gohil from Makeintern and Spring Fest (IIT Kharagpur).

The 75 participants from Classes VII to XII learnt about the different facets of securing Smart Phones and Computers and loopholes in networking, surfing, social-media sites and portable devices. Participants were made aware about how they are vulnerable to various threats like virus attack, DDOS Attack, Hacking and Phishing and the security measures to be taken for the same. To their intense interest, the Resource Person also gave them sites wherein students could observe live and real cyber wars taking place around the world!

It was a practical session involving demonstrations for device security, communication privacy and browsing securities. Various courses and professions related to the Cyber Security field were also discussed. The final session was devoted to evaluation wherein students were tested to determine their learning from the workshop. Throughout the proceedings, Mr. Gohil repeatedly cautioned students to be always vigilant and on their guard when operating devices in the open cyberspace – a very important reminder indeed when using the internet!

 

Expanding options
Manan Naik and Naved Khan (XII Sc.-Biology), accompanied by Biology teachers, Jolly Joshipura and Aparna Gawarikar, attended an informative session at the Dr. Vikram Sarabhai Institute of Cell and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Science, MS University on January 19.

Prof. C.V Ramakrishnan (Chairperson of the Advisory Board) and Prof. Sarita Gupta (Joint Director of the Integrated Course of Cell and Molecular Biology) gave detailed information about the Course, its future career prospects, the number of seats and the eligibility criteria for the Entrance Examination.

On their return, Manan and Naved, in turn, oriented their classmates about the visit and also informed them about the course being an exciting career option.

 

Creating problem solvers
On January 23, students of Class XI attended a session on 'Design the Future', conducted by Design Consultant and Coach Dolly Parikh, Design Strategist at Hyperloop Transportation Technologies & Medallia.

The Resource Person Dolly Parikh provided a refreshing outlook to the students on designing solutions to problems. Through an engaging activity, she made the students get hands-on experience on designing solutions using processes from 'design thinking' and 'innovation management'.

This experience will certainly help students to come up with effective solutions to any problems they might face in both their personal and scholastic lives.

Unraveling the mysteries of the earth
Students of Class V attended a session at the Community Science Centre Vadodara on 'Seasonal Variation of Day and Night – a Global Perspective'. Resource Person Nitin Ghatpande (Former Scientist and Group-Director of Mangalyaan Project at ISRO) held forth at length upon longitudes, latitudes and the concept of Greenwich Mean Time. Of special interest to the students was his explanation about how to calculate time, based on the shadow of objects, and also how the longitude and latitude of a particular place can be determined with the aid of a Sun Dial.

The session was held on January 23 and aroused such intense curiosity in the young minds that, once back in school, they decided to do further explore the topic on their own.

 

Towards a healthy future
Dr. Binal Shah, President of the 'Baroda Obstetric and Gynaecological Society', conducted an 'Awareness Talk for Teenage Girls' on January 24 for all girl students of Classes VII to IX. The girls were oriented about Menstrual Physiology, PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome), the Importance of Diet and Exercise and Self Defence Techniques.

The interactive session also addressed some other common issues concerning the female reproductive system such as hormonal changes during puberty, maintaining proper hygiene, irregularities in the menstrual cycle etc. and suggested ways of dealing with those problems. The Talk really helped prime the girls to be better informed about the growing female body and understand the changes they were experiencing as adolescents.

Further, in line with the School's continuous quest to ensure student wellness, girls of Class VI, along with their mothers, attended the 'Daughter Hygiene Program' conducted by Resource Person Jalpa Thakkar from Procter and Gamble. The session aimed to create awareness, as well as clear certain misconceptions, regarding hygiene for both mothers and daughters. The interactive session ended with an engaging activity, 'How much you know your mother', followed by a video on common pre-adolescent and adolescent issues. All the mothers were unanimous in their opinion that the session had helped them to arrive at a better understanding of the changes that their daughters were undergoing and the mental and physical effects of the same.

 

The Awakened Citizen Programme continues …
On February 8, students of Class VII had a follow up session of the Programme with Resource Persons Poonam Suri and Piya Chakravorty from Ramakrishna Mission Delhi. The 'Awakened Citizen Program' is a three-year graded value education module for students of Class VII-IX developed by the Ramakrishna Mission and is based on Swami Vivekananda's definition of education as "the manifestation of the divinity already in Man". The module is incorporated in the Class VII Life Skills curriculum and the concerned teachers had already received training on Programme implementation at a preliminary workshop in August.

The two Resource Persons asked students various questions to determine the development of the intended values and were well-satisfied with the moral progress of the youngsters. Definitely a path well embarked upon by these young 7th graders!

 

Vadodara Literature Festival 2017
The three-day (February 24 to 26) Lit Fest was organised by Syahee.com, a leading global digital platform in the world of literature, in association with Vadodara Municipal Corporation and featured Indian and International writers, authors, poets, critics and academicians. The Festival included a range of literary activities, like book launches, panel discussions, talks by eminent personalities, performances showcasing literary talent and workshops, including some events exclusively for children.

Navrachana Vidyani students participated actively in the Festival on all three days by attending children's workshops on the first and third days and putting up a Gujarati street play, "Aapni Pragati na Avrodhako" on the second. While the artistes were roundly applauded for a fine display of acting skills, many in the audience also appreciated the theme that stressed on the need to first look inward as a means to overcome hurdles in the path of progress.

Earlier, on February 24, Aruvi Dave (XI Sc.), Nikita Rajan, Kavisha Desai and Rhea Mathews (XI Gen.), Murti Patel (IX B) and Divya Patel (IX C) had attended the 'Workshop on Travelogue Writing' conducted by eminent journalist Teja Desai. She gave valuable pointers on how to personalise travelogue writing and to solidify their learning, made participants write an actual travelogue and provided on-the-spot feedback on their pieces. The session thus provided a really enriching experience for the students who became enthused about writing a travelogue on their next visit to any place of interest.

L to R : Aruvi Dave, Kavisha Desai, Nikita Rajan, Divya Patel, Murti Patel and Rhea Mathews

On the final day, Yashvi Dave (VII A), Nidhi Shah (VIII C), Pushti Shah (VIII D) and Stuti Pandya (IX D) participated in the highly interactive 'Book Review Workshop' conducted by writer and journalist Sharmishtha Chawda. The Resource Person initiated the workshop by making participants discuss their reading habits and then share their favourite reads and what drew them to those particular books. She then tuned in the students to the different elements of a good book/movie review while stressing the need for a critic to be totally fair and unbiased in reviewing a work. Finally, the participants were made to review any book of their choice and given inputs on how to improve their writing. Truly, the four Vidyanians have gained crucial insights into the make-up of any good critic!

 
Outbound learning
The biology students of Grade XII visited the Botanical Garden (MSU, Vadodara) on May 10 to observe the biodiversity in plants. It was an enriching experience for the students who got an opportunity to learn and examine the morphology and anatomy of various plant phylum like Bryophyta and Pteridophyta apart from other ornamental and medicinal plants.
 
Faculty Enrichment Programme
New age learning
Principal Sonal Verma attended a two day (November 8 to 9) intensive Workshop at Mumbai on 'Agile School Leadership for School Teams' conducted by Dr. Simon Breakspear, known internationally for his practical insights on learning innovation and system reform. The Workshop was followed by solution focussed discussion around the topic of 'Policy to Practice' that enabled our Principal to gain fresh insights into how a New Age direction can be given to the teaching-learning process in schools as well as how to innovate within the current policy context.

The event was attended by leading thought leaders and change leaders from across India who deliberated extensively on the New Education Policy's principles, priorities and practices so as to help them break through inertia and create meaningful progress in educational innovation.

Learning from the past to build the future

On Nov 14, Principal Sonal Verma conducted a workshop to prompt the Navrachana Vidyani faculty to 'Revise and Review' the scholastic programmes adopted in Semester-1 and, based on the outcomes of the brainstorming session, bring about appropriate modifications in the new term. Guided by their Principal, teachers introspected as a team on the effectiveness of the learning programme in the previous semester and devised new strategies based on collective reflection. The workshop thus proved to be very fruitful in facilitating a peer sharing session that allowed for performance review, goal re-setting and strategizing.
 

Keeping abreast with trends
On November 19, Principal Sonal Verma attended 'Mind Mingle Inspirational Festival ' at IIM Ahmedabad where she interacted with some of the leading educators from India and abroad who deliberated on the subject of "Inspirational Education". The primary focus of the event was thus to discover a whole new world of holistic teaching and learning and find new trends in education to bring about innovation in schools and change the mindsets of both teachers and students.

This thinking is totally in line with the Navrachana Vidyani educational philosophy for the School has all along encouraged innovation and experimentation in teaching practices.

 

Showing the way to saving precious lives
Vidyanian Reeti Chauhan (IX A), organised an Awareness Programme for teachers on organ donation, 'Live after you die'. The event, held on November 20, was co- hosted by Dr. Ruchita Parmar (Transplant Coordinator at Sterling Hospital) who provided information about the process of organ donation.

Through her Power Point Presentation, Reeti explained the essentials of organ donation, including 'the things to know' before preparing to donate organs and also informed the audience about the various hospitals that conduct organ transplantation in Vadodara. She urged the teachers to spread awareness as many potential donors do not contribute to the noble cause simply due to lack of knowledge about the whole process.

The immensely relevant event ended after an interactive session wherein Dr. Parmar addressed the many queries put forth by teachers, all of whom were eager to go out and spread the word on this noble cause.

What a noble initiative indeed by young Reeti!

 

On the road to empowerment
Principal Sonal Verma and Navrachana Vidyani teachers attended the 'Shakti – Women Entrepreneurs Summit' organized by VCCI in association with India SME Forum on December 3. The main objective of the Summit was to encourage an increasing number of women to head their own businesses. The key topics of discussion were how to provide opportunities for women in business, grooming women entrepreneurs for creating successful brands and how to finance a startup. The Chief Guest at the Summit was the Hon'ble Minister for Women and Child Development, Govt. of Gujarat, Dr. Nirmala Sunil Wadhwani besides other noted dignitaries like Prahlad Kakar (Ad Guru), Vinod Kumar (President India SME Forum) and Tejal Amin (Chairperson-Navrachana Education Society and Director- Jyoti Ltd.)

NES Chairperson Tejal Amin began by quoting former US First Lady, Michelle Obama: "No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of its women and deprives itself of the contributions of half of its citizens." She made the audience realize that women are more versatile as compared to their male counterparts and just needed to be empowered to flourish in all fields. She also emphasized that for women to be economically and occupationally empowered, they needed to be educated and maintain their health too.

A successful entrepreneur herself, she definitely inspired many women in the audience to consider entrepreneurship as a means to economic freedom.

 

The right way to teach grammar
On January 7, English teacher Uttara Sharma attended a Seminar on 'Effective Methodologies of Teaching English Grammar' conducted by Ms. Rajeshwari Swami, Former Education Officer, an Academic Co-ordinator and a Principal for many years.

The emphasis of the seminar was to impress upon participants that Grammar could be taught most effectively by conducting activities focusing on Listening and Speaking skills. The interactive session ended with a resolve by teachers to adopt communicative strategies that would engage student interest in English as a subject. As Ms. Sharma said, "The techniques learned in the Seminar would certainly aid in removing the fear of Grammar in many young minds."

 

Smoothening the road to learning
Counsellor Falguni Shah attended a two day Workshop (January 7 and 8) on 'Working with Learning Difficulties' organized by Psy Lens Centre for Psychological Services, Surat, and Dyslexia Association Telangana (DAT). The Workshop was conducted by distinguished facilitator, Dr. J.P Das, an Indo-Canadian educational psychologist and an internationally recognized expert in educational psychology, intelligence and childhood development. He has received the 'Order of Canada' for his internationally recognized work in the field of cognitive psychology.

The Workshop covered three intervention modules involving the PASS (Planning, Attention, Successive and Simultaneous Processing) Reading Enhancement Program, Cognitive Enhancement Program and Math Module, thus enabling participants to upgrade their skills and thereby make more effective interventions for children with learning difficulties.

 

Towards a clean future
Teacher Rashmi Monish along with Krishika Pahilwani (IX) and Dhwani Patel (IX) attended a Seminar on 'Household Waste: Garbage to Gold' conducted by Socleen (Society for Clean Environment) and CREDAI, Vadodara on January 22. A panel of ten members that included entrepreneurs and founder members of notable organizations of Vadodara, discussed technical solutions to bring about productive use of household waste.

Dr. Vinod Rao, the Municipal Commissioner of Vadodara , in an inspirational and interactive speech, emphasized the need to strengthen the efforts directed towards making Vadodara clean and green and also deliberated upon some of his plans to realize the vision.

It was a motivating session for the young Vidyanians as it inspired them to contribute to the ongoing 'Mission Clean' efforts of the Swachhagrahis in school.

 
A session to bring about change
On February 10, teachers Pramila Thapa , Duby Guru, Manju Rai, Vinaya Mishra and Autindriya Acharya attended an interactive session conducted by Mr. Thomas Schaedler (Director General, College du Leman, Switzerland) at Navrachana School, Sama. In his presentation, Mr. Schaedler familiarized the teachers with the changing global scenario and how it affects the education system and educators as well. He went on to emphasize that the 'Tradition based learning' should be done away with and be replaced by 'Challenge based learning' and also answered teachers' queries regarding differences in the teaching-learning process in the two countries.
 

Creating leaders for the new age
Principal Sonal Verma and teachers Pramila Thapa , Duby Guru, Smitha Sanjeev and Suni Bhat attended the 'National Conference : Expanding Circles of Influence and Creating New Age Leaders' organised by Navrachana School, Sama on February 11 and 12. The keynote speaker was Padmashri Shovana Narayan, a Kathak maestro and educationist, while other eminent speakers included Thomas Schadler (Director General of College de Leman Switzerland), Syed Sultan Ahmed (Founder of EduMedia), Dr. Samir Dalwai (Founder, New Horizons Child Development Centre) and Dr. Vijayam Ravi (Former member of the Inspection Team for the Indian Council for Secondary Examinations, New Delhi).

The Conference aimed at strengthening leadership by generating a lot of discussion and coming up with solutions to New Age dimensions and issues pertaining to the Education Industry. The various interactive sessions thus provided the school leaders present with education mantras that would empower their instructional leadership.

The Navrachana Vidyani delegates certainly brought back many new ideas from the Conference that would go further towards making the School 'future-ready'.

 

It's just a number game...
The workshop, 'Fun with Numbers', was conducted by the Jodo Gyan Shiksha organisation on April 15 and was attended by Teachers Preeti Bhatt, Chhaya Jaiswal, Bhranti Shah and Padmaja Patwardhan.

The agenda was to make Mathematics a 'fun' subject to learn for growing children. For this, the resource person demonstrated various activities designed to enhance the computation, thinking and problem solving skills of the students.

This workshop will surely help the Navrachana Vidyani Math. teachers to introduce innovative methods in their classrooms that would enable the younger students to easily grasp the subject as well as to enjoy learning it

 

Teachers working it out...
A healthy mind resides in a healthy body. An old saying but true! With this thought in mind, Principal Sonal Verma initiated a month long Fitness Program for teachers of Navrachana Vidyani on April 10 to build up their physical wellness..

From jogging to push ups they do it all, thereby becoming fit and fine for the students.

Your hands know a lot more than you think they know!
Navrachana Vidyani teachers Namita Rajput, Pratima Rathore and Dipty Bhambhani attended the 'Lego Education Seminar' conducted by Duck Learning (an exclusive distributor and partner of LEGO Education in Gujarat and Maharashtra) on April 21 at Hotel Express Towers. Resource Persons Hozefa Aziz (Chief Education Officer at Lego Education, Denmark) and Brian Dam (Regional Manager of Lego Education, Denmark ) oriented the audience and demonstrated how LEGO kits can be useful in engaging the students in the classrooms through hands-on activities and meet the curriculum objectives.

This experience will indeed facilitate the teachers' endeavour of bringing the 21st century skills into the classrooms.
 
Gujarati Street Play and Extempore Inter School Competitions
The Gujarati Street Play and Extempore Inter-School Competitions organized on February 21 was yet another initiative by Navrachana Vidyani in its ongoing programme to popularize Gujarati among English Medium School students. The event was thus a part of the 'Smt. Savitaben Amin Smaranarthe Gujarati Prachaar ane Prasar Abhiyaan' that the School has embarked upon by way of paying homage to the memory of the eminent educationist and Founder of Navrachana Education Society. A series of such competitions, workshops and seminars are held by Navrachana Vidyani at regular intervals to reinforce love and respect for the 'Maatru bhasha' in the present generation.

While around 200 students from 14 Schools participated in the Street Play, 10 schools participated in the Extempore Competition. Tejas Vidyalaya emerged as winners in the Street Play category while hosts Navrachana Vidyani bagged the 2nd position. In the Extempore Competition, New Era Senior Secondary School claimed the 1st position with Baroda High School (Bagikhana) coming in 2nd. Navrachana Vidyani had clinched the Rolling Trophy but, being the host school, it was passed on to the next best performing school – New Era Senior Secondary School.

Chief Guest Professor Shirishbhai Panchal (Head of the Gujarati Department at MS University, a critic and a writer) addressing the gathering, held forth on the importance of organizing such events by making the point that, "No matter how many languages you may learn but never forget your mother tongue".

Such encouraging words reinforce our conviction that the School has indeed taken up a worthwhile programme in endeavouring to popularize Gujarati language and literature among young people.