“Everyone wants to be strong and self-sufficient, but few are willing to put in the work necessary to achieve worthy goals” – Mahatma Gandhi.
Teaching the “importance of self-reliance” to children, was the main objective of principal Sapan Kumar of ‘Utkramit Madhya Vidyalaya’ located at Dumarthar village in Dumka district in Jharkhand.
Theoretical studies are the only major thing seen nowadays in school. But if we talk about one particular school in Jharkhand village which not only teaches book related stuff but also focuses on making the students learn to be self-reliant!
How do they do so?
You will be surprised to learn that they make most of the things they use in their classroom from chalks, mats to even brooms. All these are made using locally sourced materials. This is considered an essential skill on the way to becoming more self-reliant. Using the classroom wall as a blackboard for solving problems and using loudspeakers to reach a larger audience of students, did end up grabbing the attention of the whole village. This is a very different and effective approach to enhance the mind of our future generation, and not to mention with minimal resources.
Sapan Kumar believes that all-around development is important for a child to become successful in life which is the whole reason for his initiative.
Sapan Kumar’s unique approach
When Sapan Kumar found the chalks were very expensive, he immediately started looking for other ways to replace chalks. He started looking for the means by which it can be easily produced. The raw material used to make chalks were easily available which lead him to the decision of producing the chalk on his own.
The New Indian Express reported that Kumar said, “Now, the children are producing more than 200 chalks every day.”
To maintain social distancing, classes were held outside. The mats which children sat on were made of palm leaves by themselves only. When data was collected from students, they claimed to be happy to learn new skills!