Newsletter Issue 27: Yr 20-21
26 Feb 2021
This week has been a roller coaster ride of discussions on emotions. We also had a workshop on it, read along….
One of the most important things that we passed in the judiciary this week is that all the meetings and circle times will not be mandatory anymore. We are going to give it a try till the end of this semester. Kids who don’t attend the meetings will also have to obey the rules that were passed. Only thing is when there’s a case against them they will not have a chance to defend, since they were absent.
The main case this week was that we saw some kids misusing tools and equipment and indulging in property damage. There was a case against all of them and were asked to spend three days in the quiet zone. They are allowed to attend sessions, but can’t go out to play. The hardest consequence decided so far is to not come to LC for two days.
कर के सीखॊ
We had the demonstration of the mop competition this week. We had four groups and all had prepared a design brief and a drawing of the prototype. Within the problem statement was a condition to help Sanjeevani Mausi to avoid putting her hands in the dirty water. One of the teams had installed a rope to help squeeze the water out. The other group had thought of stuffing the mop through a plastic cup to do the job. Sanjeevani Mausi was a tough judge and she gave critical reviews. She said, ”As a consolation I can give 4 or 5 marks out of 10”...:)
Besides these we opened several music systems this time. Small speakers, big speakers, radios, CD players, etc. Few kids managed to open and close with all the things back in them. Next week we are planning to make three different kinds of cameras.
We had a discussion about appearing for exams like NIOS (National Institue for Open Schooling) and IPM (Institute for Promotion of Mathematics) exams. Few of our kids are in 4th grade currently and next year they will be ready for the 5th grade exams. We have asked them to discuss at home and then we can put their goal charts accordingly for the next year. Again these exams are not mandatory for 10th std or anything.
Workshop on Communication
Rashmi who conducts workshops for non violent communication had come to visit us. It is a challenge to talk to kids about being compassionate to others. But she did a nice job of communicating her intentions and ideas. The crux is to focus on expressing one’s needs as well as understanding others’ needs, even though they may be quoted in unpleasantness. Being compassionate at all times while checking one’s feelings is the key. We did some small exercise to relate our feelings to our bodies. When we are angry, sad, happy where does it affect us in our bodies? Rashmi says to practice NVC is to climb a mountain without an end in sight, which means we are always on this never ending journey.
We had an incident at LC where only one child was getting singled out for pranking. The child was in utter distress, having brought the issue multiple times among friends the issue remained unresolved. One of the non negotiables in LC is no bullying, this rule came into existence after a few incidents with other kids. Since then there have been fewer bullying incidents. The problem started when the difference between bullying and pranking was crossed. It is a fine line between an act to have a light laugh and to laugh at the cost of others. We had a discussion today about the need for pranking and the fun associated with it. The feeling of empathy and why it is the most important thing in a place like ours. It is difficult to run a place where everyone has an equal chance to live their freedom. Without an authority who calls the shorts it is nearly impossible to stop a mayhem. What's the guiding light in such a community, is the core feeling we have for one another. The mere fact of social connection and feeling empathetic towards one another can only save us. The beauty of this setup is that for every problem we have dialogue and discourse.
Food for thought
Empathy in the words as simple as possible is “seeing with the eyes of another, hearing with the ears of another and feeling with the heart of another.” This is deceivingly simple and sure short way to world peace if we as individuals and nations practice it.
Just a reminder about the Open House on coming Sunday @ 10 am. If you can join then it would be great, if otherwise then also it's ok, no worries.
Until next week….