pyp mirror from AKAH october 2014

October 2014
From the Head of Academy
From the head of academy
From the JS principal
The learner profile
I have just completed my second month of service here in Hyderabad. I would like to
thank all of you who have made an effort to welcome me, enquired after me and who
have helped me to settle so quickly. I joined the Academy because I was entranced by
His Highness’ vision and delighted to be offered the opportunity to make that vision a reality here in India. I have to say that I am enjoying myself enormously. I look forward very
much to meeting you all as the
year progresses and to becoming
an integral part of this great school.
Field trip
Hyderabadi heritage
Guest speaker
Global read aloud
IB workshop
The Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad
Teacher exchange
Outreach seminar
Musical activity
PE updates
Hindi Divas
Peace Day
New library
The reading hub
Learning to swim
Spotlight on outreach
Art workshop
Day care diary
Dr. Geoffrey Fisher
Head of Academy
From the Junior School Principal
A delightful term in the Junior School
At the outset, I want to let you know that
our academic calendar for 2014-15 has
four terms and not three as the previous
years. It never fails to astonish me how
the days fly past, and we are already a
quarter of the way into the new academic
This term saw the students in Junior
School settle in really well to their new
grades, and able to sustain their unrelenting excitement and delight in school life.
Apart from the odd two days of unexpected holidays, the term was uninterrupted and this facilitated the successful completion of the first unit of inquiry and the
launch of the second one.
The highlight of the term has been the
several top notch assemblies presented
by the different grades in celebration of
the various festivals such as Onam,
Dussera and Bakri-Eid and the important
days we marked namely Independence
day, Hindi day, Teachers’ day and the International Day of Peace. We had students in different grades presenting assemblies on their units of inquiry and the
memorable ones were those by Grade 3s
showcasing the cultural diversity among
us and Grade 4s who portrayed their understanding of leaders. There were several noteworthy Hindi assemblies, including the
one in which the students in grade 2 presented their understanding of plants. I wish to thank the students, teachers and especially
the parents who were very supportive in providing costumes and props to make these presentations so entertaining and visually
pleasing. The sing along and musical assemblies were also spellbinding.
As a member of the Hyderabad network of PYP schools, there were several job alike sessions that our teachers participated in,
and we were honoured to host the session for teachers of additional languages in the JS library. Our students also participated in
swimming and sporting events in other PYP schools. Speaking of professional development for teachers, the Aga Khan academies’ Teacher Exchange programme is well underway and Ms Evelyn has brought in a breath of fresh air from Mombasa, and
has quickly blended in to become a part of the AKAH community. Likewise, Ms Sheherbanoo is enjoying her stint in Mombasa.
Ms Laboni attended an IB workshop in Thailand and returned with so much to share.
In terms of visitors to the school, we were very fortunate to see so many parents around giving us some constructive feedback
about the various aspects of school life. Mr Geoff and the senior management are very mindful of their valuable suggestions and
will make sure they are attended to. In the last week of term, we were also honoured to have members of the Academies Unit
from Paris visiting us. We are very grateful to all of the JS parents for attending the PTM on Friday.
I would like to ask the parents to use the upcoming holiday to follow up on the medical check up of the students and attend to any
health related issues. I wish you all a very restful, peaceful term break and look forward to seeing the students on Monday 27th
October 2014 to begin the next term of the academic year.
Latha Kumar
Principal, Junior Academy
The Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad
Let’s delve deeper into…THE LEARNER PROFILE
How would you describe this chair?
• It is brown in colour
• It has four legs
• It is made of wood
Put together, this is the ‘profile’ of the chair. The word ‘profile’ is used to describe a thing or a person. In simple words, the Learner Profile is a set of attributes which describe a learner and the learner can be a student, a teacher, a parent, an administrator or
even support staff. These values help us to be better individuals. In the words of the IB, “The IB Learner profile is based on the
values that are the embodiment of what the organisation believes about international education.” The Learner Profile puts the IB
mission statement into action and it aims to make the learner internationally minded. The IB Learner Profile was initially used by
the PYP and was called the PYP Learner Profile. Later on, it was adapted by all three (now four) IB programmes and hence got
its name. Recently, the IBO published a research paper based on a review of the profile. This paper makes meaningful connections between the definition of a ‘LEARNER’ and the attributes of the ‘PROFILE’. It is based on the research of renowned educational philosophers like Piaget, Bruner, Vygotsky, Bloom and many others. According to the paper, a learner has four different
dimensions (or themes) and a few attributes are linked to each dimension.
• Cognitive dimension - This dimension addresses the cognitive processes of acquiring in-depth knowledge and understanding. It
comprises of interactions that encourage the development of concepts and mental models. The attributes that fall under this dimension are ‘Knowledgeable’, ‘Thinker' and ‘Reflective’
• The cognitive or personal dimension - This dimension helps in making a person aware of their own learning. It focusses on selfefficacy and these attributes define your inner personality. ‘Inquirers’ and ‘Principled’ fall under this theme.
• The affective or emotional dimension: This comprises all the emotional aspects of a learner. It helps in developing a selfconcept and focusses on well-being. It comprises of the attributes ‘Caring’, ‘Courageous’ and ‘Balanced’.
• The cultural or social dimension: Learning collaboratively, expressing oneself and being open to others’ viewpoints is highly
essential and that is when this dimension is helpful. ‘Communicators’ and ‘Open-minded’ are the attributes under this dimension.
To better execute the virtues mentioned in His Highness Aga Khan’s vision, the Academies have added two attributes of their
own: ‘Stewards’ and ‘Leaders’ to the Learner Profile. These attributes make the Academies unique in that they give a special
emphasis on ethical leadership, cultural rootedness and stewardship. While at school, students are provided with opportunities to
showcase these attributes through a variety of learning experiences. They are embedded into the written and assessed curriculum. For a holistic approach, it is highly recommended that the students are encouraged to portray these values at home as well.
Parents are hence requested to facilitate this process. Here are some suggestions:
• Use the attributes ‘principled’ and ‘reflective’ to model best behaviour
• Use the attributes ‘knowledgeable’, ‘inquirer’ and ‘thinker’ while they do research or home assignments
• Use the attributes ‘leaders’, ‘open-minded’ and ‘communicators’ in a social setting
• Use the attributes ‘stewards’ and ‘caring’ to reduce-reuse-recycle resources
• Students can balance work and play using the attribute ‘balanced’
• Students may reflect on how they show these attributes at home
Most importantly, lead by example - ‘live’ the profile yourself!
Reference—Towards a continuum of IB Education. IBO (2009)
International Baccalaureate learner profile: A literature review. Dr Kate Bullock (2013)
Archana Prashar, PYP Coordinator
AQyayana yaa~a (Field trip)
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AaSaa krto hO Aagao BaI eosaI k[- AQyayana
yaa~aAaoM ka p`baMQa hma kr pae.
Meena, Hindi teacher
Grade 3 students eagerly waited in between the minarets of Charminar, chattering
‘Hyderabadi’ heritage
away with notepads and pens in hand. We carefully observed the fine details of the
spectacular carvings, the fountain in the middle and the arches on all sides. Ms.
Rayis – our guide, arrived and we started out to explore the natural and man-made heritage of the fascinating area known as the
Old City.
Who knew that we would encounter impressive, magnificent structures at almost every turn. We walked through the Laad bazaar
to the Mecca Masjid, Shahi Jilu Khana, clock tower, Murgi chowk, the oldest bird market, Asman Jah Bahadur Devdi and finally
the Chowmahallah Palace where we gobbled down a scrumptious breakfast. Rejuvenated, we proceeded to the Purani Haveli
and Chowmahallah Palace Museum. We were told about the relics and grandeur of the 400 year old history of the Qutub Shahi,
Mughal and Asaf Jahi rulers.
The heritage walk was an integral part of our unit to understand the culture and history of Hyderabad and the importance of valuing our heritage. We were really courageous to take our students to a sensitive area like the old city and we are grateful to all
those parents who accompanied us. It was a delightful way to explore the charming history of the city and a spellbinding journey
back into time.
Moushumi Form Tutor -Grade 3
Students of Grade 5 and 6 had a session with an award-winning journalist,
Mr.Raj Mohan Tella, in connection with their ongoing unit of inquiry "Media" on
August 28, 2014 in the lecture theatre of the Academy. It was a very interesting and informative session as Mr. Tella spoke about
the different types of media. He used photography, one of the most powerful media sources, to inform the students about the impact of media. He shared with the students paintings and art forms of the prehistoric period which were used at that time to communicate.
Expert sharing experience
He touched upon the history of media devices and sources to help students understand the significance of communication.
He also explained in detail about the various communication
skills like listening, viewing, presenting, speaking, reading,
writing and non -verbal communication.
Students were deeply involved in the session and they had
a very interactive question time. Mr. Tella addressed their
questions with appropriate answers and relevant examples.
It was indeed an
interactive session.
Mubeen Safura,
Form Tutor
Grade 6
The Global Read Aloud project was created by Pernille
Global Read Aloud
Ripp in 2010 with a simple goal in mind: one book to connect the
world. With four years under its belt and more than 200,000 connections made, The Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad Junior School is really excited to be part of this global venture.
The objective is simple; we select a book to read aloud to our students during a set, six-week period and during that time
we try to make as many global connections as possible Each teacher decides what activity to do after reading a chapter. They
will then share this with their buddy classes across the world using Twitter, Skype, Edmodo,Wikis, email, regular mail, Kidblog,
and any other tools we can think of to make these connections. Hopefully this will encourage our students to learn to love books
and develop good reading habits.
Book choices this year:
The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo.
The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm
One For the Murphy's by Lyndy
Mullaly Hunt
The official start date for this
year's project is October 6th,
2014.Stay tuned!
Naini Singh, Form Tutor
Grade 5
A new concept learned, a new skill to develop
I had been to Phuket ,Thailand last week for a workshop and learnt a new term
called mindfulness. Mindfulness is a modern reworking of ancient meditation
traditions, principally Buddhist. It is designed to help us deal with day to day difficulties by putting us in control of our own mind.
My first session of mindfulness was very stimulating, after the session with Ms.
Dianne Smith I was all charged up for my three day long journey towards the
Wellbeing and Leadership sessions.
I discovered a curious connection between my breath and my mind. The obvious conclusion is that the breath is influenced by how we feel our emotions of
joy and happiness as well as negative emotions. To deal with our day to day
stress, mindfulness gives us back some sense of mastery over our thoughts and
feelings. Rather than having the sense that we are being pushed around by our
feelings and thoughts we learn to be able to have some assistance over them.
Laboni Sarkar, Form Tutor Grade 2
Hyderabad-Mombasa teacher exchange
I am a Kenyan and a mother of two girls (8 and 13 years). I have a Bachelor's Degree in Education from Kenyatta University and
a Masters in Teacher Education from the Aga Khan University.
I have been a teacher for most of my working life. I have taught in primary and secondary school and have been a teacher educator at the Aga Khan University in Tanzania. I have also worked as a consultant in the field of education in partnership with organisations and groups that dealt with education and care for children in difficult circumstances, both in Kenya and Somalia. I
have also worked as a volunteer street educator with a mobile school, teaching children living in the streets and informal settlements (slums) around Nairobi.
I currently teach Year 4A at the Aga Khan Academy in Mombasa, Kenya, where I am
also the syndicate leader for both year 3 and 4.
I enjoy listening to music, love dancing and travel wherever and whenever I can. I
particularly love handicrafts, especially those that portray the richness of various cultures.
I am here on an 8-week long teacher exchange programme, the first of its kind
amongst the academies. Through this, we hope to learn from each other’s schools
and seek ways through which we can foster more frequent and deeper ways of
teacher and student collaboration in the long term.
Evelyn Awino
Outreach Seminar
I have always strongly believed in the mission and vision of the Academy, to
be able to serve humanity and give what you’ve got from the world. Therefore, when we were given the option of Outreach, I was thrilled at the thought
as it was a moment where I could share my best practices with other teachers and help them with a few strategies that I so confidently use in my classroom.
English being the second language for us, I naturally picked the topic of ESL
strategies. With my preparation for the day ready, I nervously waited for the
teachers to start coming in. As they gathered around the tables and settled
(men in one group and women in another), I asked them to write down their
expectations from the session they had come for. There was an atmosphere
of uncertainty as they wrote their expectations. Just to gather information
about the crowd I was dealing with, they had to choose their fluency in English by ‘strongly agree, agree, disagree or strongly disagree’. Thereafter, to
ease them and get them acclimatized with each other, I handed out Bingo to
each group. They enjoyed getting to know about each other and were ready
to work with buddies. They were receptive to different groupings and buddy
strategies, especially one where they had to pick a biscuit of
their choice and be in a group of the biscuit brand they had
chosen. Differentiation in the same classroom caught their
fancy as they were amused as to how I had given them
crosswords based on their prior knowledge. Picture prompts
for creating sentences was highly effective with most of
them. I was totally enamored and absorbed to see how engrossed they were with all these learning engagements. To
take the session forward, I introduced them to the importance of letting the students know the criteria during assessments. To understand this, two teachers were asked to
volunteer and leave the classroom and the others had to create a task for the teachers who were outside. When the
teachers were told the task without the criteria they failed to
meet the expectations of their evaluators. Thus the importance of introducing the criteria was emphasized. They
felt like a student having fun while learning and were vocal
about responses. At this point they also wanted to know if
they were being assessed, to which I put their doubts to rest
by telling them that I was there to share some of my classroom practices which might benefit them in their classroom teaching, also mentioning the fact that they were all highly qualified and experienced teachers and I was just there to facilitate them.
Visible thinking tools were introduced to them through SEE- THINK- WONDER, wherein they analyzed a picture and tried to
point out the details with precision.
Next on my agenda was to make them move around a bit, as some of them were feeling restless and they were asked to
form a line based on their month of birth. It was heartening to see how these highly experienced teachers wove a story about
a boy named ‘Kittu’ and created an interesting plot. Through repeated enforcements I introduced the importance of being repetitive with ESL students and setting realistic expectations for the students. Whilst they were jotting down a few notes I
helped them with a few websites they could use in their classroom ex:
Now was the final bit of a rewarding session, to reflect on the session, they had to write one learning outcome from the workshop which they shared through a ‘snowball’ activity. It was truly exhilarating to know that they had all thoroughly enjoyed the
workshop and had learnt new strategies which they all were eager to use in their classrooms.
Let me not forget to mention my “AHA “ moment , I was asked for autographs for the first time in my life and all of them wanted a picture clicked with me.
Shikha Madan, Form tutor Grade 4
The Music Department continues to offer
a wide range of musical activities from
Grade 1 to Grade 10.
In the early part of this school year, students are being especially encouraged
to perform. The Senior Choir are preparing for a performance of ‘The Tempest’
at the end of November whilst the Junior
Choir have been learning Hindi songs,
and together with English songs learned
in class such as ‘The Gingerbread man’
they will be performing to their parents in
early November.
Instrumental teaching has been given an
extra boost by the formation of the Keyboard Performers’ Group which has now
given their first performance at an MYP
assembly. The Junior School has been
busy too with the older students practising their keyboard skills and the
younger ones preparing recorder tunes
for the November recital.
Mr Subhadip is as busy as ever encouraging students in the art of Tabla playing and they too will soon be performing.
A small but enthusiastic group of beginner violinists are practising regularly during break time and after school, soon to give
their first performance.
The Music Room is open to all at the end of the school day and pianists, tabla players and would-be keyboard players from
Junior School to DP regularly spend a little time improving their musical skills.
Nigel Jackson, Music Teacher
Physical Education
Physical Education classes worked fairly well as the prevailing temperatures in
Hyderabad were reasonably mild in the last two months. In PYP, PE lessons we
focused on football skills. Swimming was also a compulsory activity for all the
students. AKA, H Junior School participated in the interschool under 12 boys
football tournament organized by Sancta Maria International School and managed to clear the first and second rounds of the tournament before losing in the
semi-finals to Sancta Maria International School. The Junior School students
participated in interschool swimming competitions organized by Oakridge international. These competitions really helped
the students to learn about the
importance of communication, team work and performance.
Ravi, Physical Education
Onam is a unique festival which loudly speaks about peace, coexistence, brotherhood and unity. At the Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad, the festival marked its start on the morning of 9th Sept. 2014
with a beautiful floral pattern “Pookalam” designed under the guidance of Ms. Isha and Ms. Roja.
Students of grade 4K spoke about the festival after the enlightening presentation by Mr. Suresh and Ms. Seena. Girls from grade 4K presented a breathtaking performance of Kaikottikali, which was the result of the practice and passion of the students. This jubilant performance was supervised by Ms. Shika, form tutor of grade 4K.
Onam is the passion of the people of Kerala and the pride of India. The spirit of this great carnival can only be felt. And, if experienced
once, it is cherished for a lifetime and at “The Aga Khan Academy –Hyderabad”, one felt so.
A festival that speaks about peace, coexistence, brotherhood and unity in India. Harvest festivals are very popular because this majestic
nation was mostly an agricultural society in the medieval and ancient times. Lohri in Punjab and Onam in Kerala are such harvest festivals
which showcase the local culture as well.
Onam is the biggest festival in Kerala, continuing for as long as 10 days without any break. It is celebrated to mark the homecoming and
coronation of the ancient mythical Emperor Mahabali. The festival showcases the rich culture and heritage of Kerala.
Onam is celebrated in the beginning of the Malayalam Calendar. September 7, 2014 was the date this year, when Thiru Onam, the most
important day of the festival fell. However, the associated festivals and rituals began as early as 10 days prior to Thiru Onam. The celebrations of first Onam started from August 29, this year, when Atham, the first day of the festival began.
The two weeks of Onam celebrations comprise of a variety of festivities and attractions
Athachamayam: Athachamayam festival marks the beginning of Onam. This is the colorful inauguration of the festival featuring a street
parade. This amazing street parade includes various Kerala art forms, dancers, decorated elephants, carnival floats and musicians etc.
Onasadya Onam: is also known as a festival of delicacies and recipes, when you can enjoy some glorious Kerala food. It includes more
than 20 wonderful curries served on a banana leaf. Restaurants in every nook and corner of Kerala offer this tasty treat.
Aranmula Snake Boat Race: The best part of the Onam Festival in Kerala is its snake boat races. The Aranmula Boat Race being the oldest
and the most popular boat race in Kerala attracts the largest crowds of spectators. It is more of a traditional ritual than a racing competition having some religious connection. The race comprises some 50 boats participating in it. It begins in the afternoon until all of the religious rituals are completed.
Kaikottikali: Kaikottikali is a highly popular folk dance which is performed during Onam. It is also known as Thiruvathirakali and is full of
elegance, poise and grace. Generally, the women perform this dance in a circular fashion around a rangoli. They wear traditional white
sarees with golden borders while performing Kaikottikali. The song on which the dance is performed is sung by a group of singers on microphone, but sometimes the performers themselves sing while dancing. As a ritual, married women perform this dance for the wellbeing
of their husbands while the unmarried women perform to get good husbands. Some of the ragas played during this dance are bhairavi,
hussaini and kamboji.
Onam Pookalam: The most common tradition followed in Kerala during the 10 days of Onam is the Pookalam decorations. The word
Pookalam is made from a combination of two words, Poo and Kalam, which means flowers and shape respectively. Onam pookalams are
generally circular in shape and are also known as flower mats.
Vidhya Pallath, Form tutor
Grade 3
Onam at ‘The Aga Khan Academy’
raYT/BaaYaa ka ivakasa
P`aaqaimak ivaBaaga maoM baccaaoM kI
BaaYaa kao ivakaisat krnao ko
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maMcaaoM ka Aayaaojana ikyaa jaata hO taik baccao ApnaI p`itBaaAaoM kao ivakaisat kr sakoM. 14
isatMbar kao baccao raYT/BaaYaa ihMdI ko p`caar p`saar maoM Apnaa yaaogadana donao ko ilae ]%saaiht rhto baccaa raYT/BaaYaa kI ]nnait kao Apnaa ]%trdaiya%va samaJakr Aa%maivaSvaasa ko saaqa Aagao
baZ,kr ]sakI rxaa krnao kI [cCa [email protected] krta hOM.
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maoM ek CaoTa saa p`stutIkrNa ikyaa qaa jaao A%yaMt sarahnaIya hO.ihMdI kao raYT/BaaYaa @yaaoM maanaa
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hue BaI baccaaoM nao ek p`stutIkrNa ikyaa qaa saaqa hI manaaorMjana ko ilae phoilayaaoM ka BaI Aayaaojana
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gau$vaar kao p`aqa-naa saBaa ko maaQyama sao baarI baarI sao sabakao Avasar p`dana ikyaa jaata hO.[sa
daOrana kivata khanaI naaTk evaM SaOxaiNak yaa~a ko p`it Apnaa AnauBava sabako saamanao p`stut
krto hOM.[sasao baccaaoM ko bahumauKI p`itBaaAaoM ka BaI ivakasa haota hO.
BaaYaa hI hmaara ima~ hO, BaaYaa hI hmaara &ana hO.
BaaYaa hI hmaarI Baavanaa hO, BaaYaa ijaMdgaI ka saaQana hO.
BaaYaa ibanaa hma AQaUro hOM II
World Peace day
The International Peace Day, was marked at
the Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad on the
19th of September, 2014, with various activities with the motto of resolving peace within oneself. The morning assembly got the
students thinking about what peace means
to each one us, with peace words, peace
postures and peace acts. Multiple perspectives were looked into while measuring the
peace temperature of the school, where the
students offered peaceful solutions to hypothetical situations of conflict. They carried
out different activities throughout the day in
their classes by making 'peace cards' for
each other, where they suggested how to
maintain a relationship of love, harmony,
kindness, empathy and peace. Some classes
painted rocks with peace slogans, while
some sparked off discussions about the importance of being ethical as media consumers. A few
classes resolved to begin every day with a short session of meditation to improve focus and concentration. All students contributed towards making of the ‘Peace Tree’ with a leaf of ‘peace wish’.
As IB learners, the students at the academy embrace the “learner profile attributes” as the building blocks of human character. They unanimously agreed to be caring, open-minded, principled
and reflective, and contribute in their small yet significant ways to make their lives harmonious.
Arpita, From tutor Grade 6
Afshine, Grade 2
The library books are so nice,
I like the new seats
we are interested in reading
and the bean bags.
The new library is looking
pretty now with new chairs,
tables and bean bags.
In this library there
are books about our
units and we learn many
things. We are happy to
have our new library.
Aahil, Grade 2
There are many bookshelves
Suhaan, Grade 2
now in the new library and
there are quizzes to do on
the computers.
Rave reviews
for new Junior
School library!
Inaya, Grade 3
We have more space
Mahek, Grade 3
now so no one can
disturb us reading.
I like the new library. It has
interesting books. I like how
it has been set out with so
many shelves and paintings on
the walls and windows.
Sana, Grade 3
We have more books now.
We have interesting and
funny books and some are
about animals and the world.
Shafin, Grade 2
Naomi, Grade 3
The Reading Hub
Our Junior School Library is a sophisticated place with a good collection of books and
non-book materials. It is filled with fiction (picture, pictorial and illustrated) and nonfiction books, which are good reading resources for our children.
The children are gradually developing their skills and adjusting themselves to fit into
the congenial reading and learning environment of our library. It has become an essential area for the students and a useful resource knowledge hub. At the same time,
students’ enhanced reading skills are assisting them to be well managed and dignified,
which is a positive step on their learning path.
CH Keshav, PYP librarian
Learning to Swim
The school year started with lots of enthusiasm and expectations on swimming. Though they were quite new to
swimming, the new faces of the PYP of AKAH were very
curious about swimming.
After the successful first six weeks of the school year,
everybody is getting accustomed to this aquatic branch
of sports with a high amount of spirit.
In spite of being novices to swimming, we are proud to
be the winners of a few medals in the interschool competitions held at Oakridge International School, Hyderabad in August. The swimming team of AKA,H is trying
its level best to organize the interhouse swimming competitions for the month of May, 2015.
Ravi, Physical Education
Spotlight on Outreach
Part of the mandate of the Aga Khan Foundation is to provide
English language teacher training in local government schools in
the Hyderabad area under the Outreach program. Ms. Lisa Gervais and Ms. Wendy Elliott joined the Outreach team in Hyderabad this year as CADEX workers from Canada. His Highness has a
strong relationship with Canada, and The Aga Khan Foundation
Canada is actively involved in educational initiatives around the
world. Recently, The Aga Khan Museum opened in Toronto, Canada, and many of our students here in Hyderabad, travel to Canada to study at universities and colleges there.
The Outreach team In Hyderabad works under the direction of
Mr. Rupen Chande, and is composed of; Mr. Rajan Thampi, Neha
Swain, Ms. Lisa Gervais, Ms. Wendy Elliott, Ms. Sylvia Sophia, and
all of the schools involved in the program.
Our year began with an exciting start. Lisa, Wendy, and Sylvia
have been on numerous school visits where we have met the
children and conducted teacher training assessments on-site.
In addition, we have written and presented papers at workshops and
attended conferences and professional development days at the Academy.
Recently, Ms. Neha Swain joined the team in the area of Access, for early
school leavers in the local area. This initiative is funded through the McArthur Foundation, The Aga Khan Foundation and local government. On Sept.
25 and 26, Ms. Neha conducted an excellent two-day intensive workshop/
conference to new teacher trainees. The presentation and enthusiasm it
generated was truly exciting to witness and it is an honour to be part of
such vital work.
In recent work, Ms. Lisa has been conducting a review of the English language teaching curriculum, and Ms. Wendy has been writing a unit on Financial Literacy for the Access Outreach Programme.
Wendy Elliott
There was a buzz in the Aga Khan Academy, Hyderabad on
7th October 2014. Students were in and out of the Junior
School library. Mr. Amit Kumar Dutt from Bihar was in the
school to share his practices as a Madhubani artist. The
workshop started with the origin and history of Madhubani
painting. Mr. Amit told the students the story of King Janak
who commissioned artists to create paintings on the walls of
the houses for the wedding of his daughter, ’Sita’ to the Hindu god Lord ‘Ram’. It has since become a tradition in Bihar
on the wedding of daughters.
He shared with the students that the people of Bihar not
Workshop on Madhubani Painting
only consider these paintings to be auspicious but even a blessing
for the new married couple. Originally done by women on freshly
plastered walls, these paintings are now done on paper, fabric,
canvas and various other medium. Mr. Amit told us that he started
practicing this art when he was just 8 years old and spoke about
the tradition of handing down this art and skill from one generation
to the other without any formal training. He enlightened us about
the traditional ways of painting with bamboo sticks and natural
dyes made by leave sand flowers - yellow from turmeric powder,
black from soot, blue form the indigo plant’s leaves. He brought a
variety of Madhubani paintings to exhibit which were made by him
and his family members depicting Hindu deities, works inspired by
nature showing the tree of life, sun, moon and animals. The works
were full of intricate floral, animal and bird motifs, and symmetrical
geometric designs to fill up the gaps. Mr. Amit gave the students a
demonstration of the different kinds of styles in Madhubani painting
– Kachini: filling up an area or a section of painting
with lots of lines and Bharani: filling up an area or
a section of painting with dyes. Some students
had one-on-one time with the artist and were lucky
enough to get the opportunity to paint with him.
Students had an amazing day full of knowledge,
colours and creativity!
Isha Joshi, Visual Art
Day care Diary
Newsletter Team
Editing: Lisa Gervais and Alison Zinsli
Photographs: Anjum Budhwani
Design: Isha Joshi