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Festive mood, culture fair and gift of tales

Educators from Kolkata schools discuss the art of storytelling, while students participate at various cultural events

Sana Nawaz | Published 20.10.22, 11:32 AM

Swarnim International School

Educators from various schools in the city discussed the art of storytelling and more at a panel discussion and workshop organised by the Early Childhood Association (ECA), Kolkata territory. The event, Once upon a Story, saw experts discussing educator Gijubhai Badheka’s contributions to the art of storytelling at Swarnim International School on October 15.

It began with the school’s students performing a skit on Red Riding Hood, giving the fairytale alternative endings. Educators shared their views on the art of telling stories. Swati Sarawagi, territory head of ECA-Kolkata and the school’s director, said the phrase “once upon a time” releases oxytocin in a child, resulting in increased attention and retention power.

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Bratati Bhattacharyya, secretary-general and CEO of the Shikshayatan Foundation, remembered being fascinated with stories aired on the radio as a child. “Stories stimulate imagination in children,” she said.

Seema Sapru, principal of The Heritage School, said: “My grandparents used to read fables and moral stories to me which fostered social-emotional learning in me.”

John Bagul, founder-principal of South City International School, said: “We must allow children to question the storyline. It helps develop critical thinking abilities.”

Suman Sood, director of B.D. Memorial School, said: “Stories can be brought to life through engaging activities such as roleplay, pictures and puppets.”

A workshop on storytelling for teachers followed, conducted by professional storyteller Priyanka Chatterjee. “The success of any workshop lies in the implementation and execution of the learning in real life. I hope the teachers will use their learning and make classrooms come alive with many stories,” said principal Rumjhumi Biswas.

Vivekananda Mission School, Joka

Vivekananda Mission School, Joka, hosted its annual exhibition — Kolkata Mahanagar — to honour the City of Joy on September 16 and 17.

The exhibition, which was held on the school premises, was an effort to help students and visitors understand the city’s cultural richness and diversity better.

The students created models and charts of people who made Kolkata famous as well as of landmark buildings, colleges, hospitals and theatres such as Victoria Memorial, BITM, Eden Gardens and Terrati Bazaar.

The event also included a probhat pheri (morning march) in which students of the Pre-primary and Primary sections took part.

Also on display were photographs of the city then and now that spoke of its growth.

Magician P.C. Sorcar Jr was the chief guest. Some budding magicians also performed some tricks at the event. There was live music session too where students and teachers performed some popular Bengali numbers.

“From the busy streets to various festivals celebrated in the city, the students and teachers did an excellent job of capturing the true essence of Kolkata. We were overwhelmed as our teamwork was highly praised by all the guests,” said principal Sarmistha Banerjee.

Bihani Academy

Teachers’ Day at Bihani Academy, Joka, was full of classroom performances and celebrations. Students of all classes greeted their teachers with roses and tilak.

A cultural programme, organised in the school auditorium, was the high point of the day. The school’s chairman Rohit Bihani and principal Mousumi Mohapatra commenced the event by lighting the inaugural lamp

Students of Class XII, Shreemoyee Basu and Rajbir Chakraborty, were the anchors of the day

A welcome dance on Aigiri Nandini was performed by students of Class XI. It was followed by renditions of Ganesh Vandana and A Hundred Miles.

The students also presented a special performance on the song, School Chale Hum. It was followed by a quiz where pupils highlighted aspects of the school and the unique characteristics of their teachers through a presentation.

The teachers were then asked to identify the subject spoken about. The teachers also sang and danced at the event. The show concluded with a vote of thanks video for the teachers.

“The hard work and dedication put in by the students were well-reflected throughout the programme. It was a memorable day for all of us. We will always cherish it,” said the principal.

Ruby Park Public School

Ruby Park Public School’s first annual day, Accolade, took place at the Science City auditorium on September 23. The event also marked a comeback of the school’s scholar badge distribution, after a hiatus of two years.

Gautam De, a retired diplomat, was the chief guest on the occasion. The programme began with the chanting of the Guru Shloka and the lighting of the inaugural lamp by principal Joyeeta Majumder.

The pupils of Classes I to XI were part of the cultural programme. They performed many songs in different languages. The school’s orchestra performed a composition, Creation. Students of Class II to IV danced to the tune of Bum Bum Bole and Class I students danced to the song, Dynamite.

The principal presented the school’s annual report, highlighting the achievements of the students. Many students were awarded badges of honour.

The principal said: “The students and teachers of the school put up a lovely cultural performance that made Accolade’22 a spectacular success.”

Orchids – The International School

The students of Orchids – The International School, Newtown, organised a social initiative, Pujarpan’22, this festive season. They donated books, ration and stationery to the marginalised children and raised funds for them during Durga Puja.

The raised amount will be donated to NGOs that work with children such as World Vision India and Prayajan.

Teachers, students and non-teaching staff members of the school raised a total of Rs 50,000 for the children.

The parents also contributed to the fundraising effort. Students and parents set up food and goodies stalls to raise the amount. The children performed agomoni songs on the occasion.

Principal Sharmili Shah said: “The response from students, staff members and parents for this initiative was huge and unprecedented. I feel privileged to host such a drive on our premises as a run-up to Durga Puja.”

Calcutta Public School, Bidhan Park

Students of Calcutta Public School, Bidhan Park, celebrated the arrival of  Durga Puja with a cultural programme, Agomoni, on September 28. The programme included a skit on Ram Leela and a fashion show depicting Satyajit Ray’s unique characters.

Classes VII to XII held a series of dance performances. The drama club staged a three-act comedy skit. The raga club performed a medley of songs. 

Students enacted a street play that demonstrated the strength of a woman who defends the Earth.

A performance on Ram Leela by Classes VII to XII followed. The school’s eco club organised a fashion show to honour the various characters from Satyajit Ray’s films.

“Our students covered all aspects of the festive season in the programme. Celebration of Ray’s 100th birth anniversary was the icing to the cake,” said principal Protichi Lahiri Sengupta.

Last updated on 20.10.22, 11:32 AM
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