Never stop questioning…

I always believe that the best places for learning to happen are vibrant classrooms that provide opportunities for the students to discuss, put their points across, experiment, commit mistakes and laugh at and learn from their mistakes.

Yesterday, in one of such classrooms we were discussing the concept of photosynthesis. With reference to one of the interesting activities, a student raised his hand timidly. Maybe he himself was not sure about his question. After getting an encouraging expression from my end he hesitantly asked …If the leaf is detached from the plant, it dies, then how come it can transport materials across different cells?

That was a valid and intelligent question. I explained the existence of life in the cells even after detachment from the plant or death of the organism to which those cells belong to. To clarify further I discussed the concept of organs being alive for some time after the death of the individual and their availability for transplant.

 I don’t know when my dextral brain dominated the sinistral and I asked the students about whether they knew about Gora and Badal mentioned in the famous poem ‘Padmavat’ ; who fought even after getting beheaded in the war between RanaRatansingh, the ruler of Mewar and Khilji. OfCourse, I didn’t   expect grade 10th students to read the epic poem ‘Padmavat’ out of interest, but I believed that many of them have seen the movie based on the same and they could relate the functioning of the torso without the head placed on it. For some of them it was difficult to imagine a headless body moving swords and killing the opponents in the battlefield. But yes, it did happen and exemplifies bravery, patriotism and OfCourse functioning of parts of our body for some time even after death.

So many times, we teachers Unknowingly or knowingly cross the porous and permeable boundaries of the subjects just to clarify a point. And most of the times students narrate such moments in alumni meets.

We don’t plan all the things all the time, it just happens….. But everything amazing starts with a question. So never stop questioning!!

 Deepali Singh Solanki

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Human’s Bloom !

Human’s Bloom !
What is human life?
It is a flower,
learn to take care of it ,
As it spreads beautiful fragrance,
 Spend life just like it .
Humanity is the objective of life
Laughter, love ,kindness are  few of its beautiful flower,
 Live life in midst of these  hues
Jealousy ,equality ,justice ,anger
are the unwanted weeds leave them aside never abuse.
Humans are flowers flowers,
Flower is symbol of life,
Just bloom it to a beautiful flower,
To spread fragrance of your life!
Snigdha Bhattacharya

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Ignite – By Rashmi Malji

Ignite is one such inspirational, thought provoking and enriching event for the facilitators of the Birla School.

Attributes add values not only to the life of the teachers they in turn transfer the same values to the curious learners. This doesn’t stop here; our facilitators also apply these learnings in their personal life.
Such enlightening event was the brainchild of our visionary educationist Chitlange Sir . Values like *Passion, Commitment, Speed, Sustainability, Seamlessness, Integrity and Innovation were equally divided among the entire staff including the administration staff. After numerous brainstorming physical and online sessions, where each staff provided their inputs gave suggestions, which finally helped in the final output for the final day of the show.
Each group was given 9 minutes for presentation.
It was a pleasure to hear and watch the eminent judges speak.
 *Dr.Uma Maheshwari* principal of SIES College.
 *Dr.Minu Madlani* principal of K P B Hinduja College.
 *Dr. Naresh Chandra*  Director education of B K Birla College.*
The distinguished judges were par excellent in their respective fields. It was quite enlightening and intensifying to listen to each one of them.
It was one of the memorable days in my life after such a compelling and alluring event. Finally I would like to end by saying that

*”He who walks with the wise grows wise”*

Rashmi Malji

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The School Reopens- Renovated and Reconstructed

13th April, 2020

Today we are starting the Online School- the technology driven venture which we would have initiated after few years. But because of the pandemic, we have taken a leap of good number of years for using technology in the teaching-learning process. A lockdown of 21 days has taken us years ahead. I feel we are on the cusp of a new world, a new era- at a turning point in the world history. The schools which had a backup plan are able to seamlessly shift to online learning. The crisis has taught us that there is a need to think of new solutions which can meet the needs of the future. It took a little time in the beginning but today teachers are all set to enter into a new world of virtual school – the school renovated and reconstructed. It will start with the prayer, teachers will take attendance and begin the online school. The time- table is set with academics as well as activity periods in the day’s routine.

Some parents and even teachers are not yet ready to adapt to the new way of teaching. Parents are working from home, there are no helpers for household chores, some parents being in the medical field are busy fighting against the virus, poor internet connectivity, logistic issues and comfort level of children, there are umpteen concerns. But remember, teachers are also facing the similar issues sitting at home, they too have young children, they also might be facing poor internet connectivity or logistic issues of having one laptop for 2/3 people at home. But they are trying their best to make the lessons interesting and interactive for students. It’s a new journey for teachers as well. Mock sessions, demo lessons, online training, mentoring each other, making presentations and assignments, exploring various methods, trials, strengthening internet connectivity and improvising the capacity of the devises are some of the preparations done by the teachers before entering into the reconstructed online school. The entire education system has been transformed.

Teething problems are always faced in the beginning of any new endeavour which can be resolved in the due course of time. This is how learning happens and innovations occur in this world. I am sure that children are going to love the new way of learning. Let’s embrace the changes happily because it will be difficult for the world to go back to the same routines after experiencing the huge transformations.

Ranjna Jangra

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Let’s learn at home……

Today, we are in the midst of an adverse situation which can be controlled positively only by social distancing, awareness, self control, following precautions to stop COVID-19 spread and being responsible to ourselves, our families, the society and the world at large.
Parents must be finding it difficult to engage children in some productive, creative and safe activities at home when schools, malls, parks and various other public places are shut. So, here are a few engaging and creative ideas to utilise the time productively rather than indulging in social media excessively.

1. Children can help in small household chores like cleaning their rooms, baking muffins, organising their books and study table, assisting you while serving food and/or refilling water bottles.

2. As digital natives, they enjoy more playing games on mobile, spending time on social media and surfing various websites. Make use of their digital comfort and encourage them to learn through the same media. Here are some suggestions for learning at home in the supervision of parents.

2.1 NCERT has several learning portals which can be utilised by the students and parents for learning from home.
– SWAYAM portal is an excellent platform for higher-class students to learn. There are several free online courses which can be done from home.
– E- Patshala is a portal which has all the NCERT text books for classes I to X available online. There are various other learning materials available which can be availed for learning concepts from home.
– NROER Portal is a learning platform for the students of classes I to XII. Parents can help children to make use of this platform for learning various concepts through videos and lectures.

2.2 Other Online Resources
• Udemy
• Khan Academy
• Tinker Lab by Rachelle
• Beast Academy(for Math)
• Discovery Education
• BBC Learning
• Outschool
Scratch (

2.3 Some Youtube Channels:
• National Geographic Kids
• Freeschool
• The Brain Scoop
• Kids Learning Tube
• Science Maze
• Crash Course Kids

2.4 Here are some websites as potential productive and learning engagements:

• (Scholastic has created a website to learn from home with 20+ days of content)

(A mobile app and website for learning languages)

(Creative art and craft ideas for little ones)


• BBC Education


• Oxford Owl

3. Board games are another fun alternative. Ludo, Catan and Monopoly can teach critical thinking and strategic thinking to children. Playing board games together with family members will also strengthen the bonding among them.

4. Reading books (online or using hard copies) is also advised and has been proven to enhance language skills, vocabulary, knowledge and world awareness.

5. Provide them with basic mechanical tools to tinker with household discarded materials/machines and old toys. Let them explore!

6. A corner on the wall can be painted black at the suitable height for young ones to scribble, draw and write.

7. Read the younger ones a story everyday.

8. Encourage children to collect information about the possible career trajectories they’d like to be part of.

Parents are requested to engage children in learning through various available resources. Children must be encouraged to go beyond textbooks and concentrate on learning fundamentals and concepts.
Use this opportunity to teach children how to remain happy, content and engaged positively in any adverse situation. Visiting malls, spending money on buying unnecessary items and eating out may not be the ways to enjoy life. There are many more effective ways to feel happy and engaged.

Mrs. Ranjna Jangra

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Why do we need an education?

Shruti P.

Why do we need an education?

Why do we need an education? This is one question that has been asked to me by many students. In return I ask them why they are in school? The usual answer is to study, to learn, to meet friends, to play games, but very reluctantly almost all of them agree that they are in school because they don’t know what else to do, they have no other choice. When people would ask them what they were doing, they wouldn’t know what to say. So, it is a given that the way we eat, drink and sleep, likewise we go to school period. Now, that one is in a school, better get an education. But what is education? To quote from Wikipedia, “Education is the process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills, values, beliefs, and habits.” When this acquisition happens in school, it is called getting a formal education. Very often we put education and marks in the same bracket. To us getting good grades is synonymous to getting a great education. The fact is both are two different things. Anyone can get good marks if one has the ability to retain what one has learnt and can reproduce it as it is on a paper during examination. People say that life would be great if you score big and get a great education. The truth is none of them can guarantee a good life. Honestly speaking, parents want their wards to score big so that they can brag about their achievement and claim to be good parents. Teachers want their students to score big so that they can market themselves to be a great school. What do marks get you? Good marks get you a good impression. When you go out for an interview, your marks tell the interviewers that you are sincere, hardworking and persistent even before you have met them. Because only intelligence doesn’t get you marks, perseverance does, even if one is a little low on intelligence. The marks you score help you get this impression and first impression must be good! Add to it the confidence, adulation and the sense of worth that you get. Marks give you a high. And then these marks help open the doors to better education for you. They take you to places where you meet like-minded people, share ideas, get to understand yourself better, try to experiment with what you think is right, realize the flaws in your thought, personality and action and most of all prepare yourself for life. Books are the best teachers, so is life but nothing beats a good education. Whether one learns music from the best teacher, the best school or on one’s own it is the number of hours one puts in that make all the difference. Learning from a teacher or in a school will help one identify one’s mistake and work on it and will make the path a bit easy. Learning on one’s own, there’s no one to correct so one makes mistakes after mistakes and then learns but much crucial time is lost in the process. Education makes learning easy. Eiffel Tower was built by Gustave Eiffel’s company, the Statue of Liberty by Bartholdi and Eiffel, Burj Khalifa by Adrian Smith, and Shah Jahan got the Taj Mahal constructed. All well-known buildings bear the name of the one who either commissioned it or is its architect, while the truth is that it was built by the masons and labourers. Education helps you get the name because it gives you the vision to do great things and not follow orders. It is not important who you learn from, but it is important that you learn. Education teaches you to learn. As Shakuntala Devi put it, “Education is not just about going to school and getting a degree. It is about widening your knowledge and absorbing the truth about life.” If one were a seed, education is the soil, water and sunlight that nourishes it, nurtures it and empowers it to not only to grow for itself but also for those around it. I feel one needs an education to change one’s own self into a better person and to change the world around into a better place for everyone. So, go change the world, make a difference and education will help you do it.

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Reading – cultivate the habit!

Mini Nair

Reading – cultivate the habit!

Reading – cultivate the habit! Recently I came across a cartoon strip where two mothers were sitting on a bench with their kids. One pair had a mobile in their hand while the other had a book. The ‘mobile’ mother was curious to know how the ‘book’ mother could make her child read. It was hilarious but a thought-provoking one. A child always tries to emulate what their parent does. It may be some actions, words or habits. If a parent is always angry, don’t expect the child to be happy and carefree. They also express their emotions through anger. A parent who uses abusive words should not expect that the child will not catch on the words. A child will bring out those words while they have a difference of opinion with anyone. It can be in school, in a family gathering or some other place where it is least expected. Then the parent tries to cover it up by beating up the child in front of people. They don’t realize that it is they who are responsible for such action. I have come across many people who wonder about how much I read. They comment – ‘As soon as I touch a book I feel sleepy’, ‘I cannot read such big books yaar, it’s so boring’, ‘How can you finish such an enormous book so soon??’ And I wonder how? That strip made me realize that it’s my mother who had cultivated the habit of reading in me. And I am passing on this beautiful habit to my daughter. My mother used to be so engrossed in the book that she was reading that we could get away with anything during that time. We could ask for permission for anything and she used to say mmmmmm. And then it was only after she came out of the ‘trance’ of reading that she realizes she had given us a ‘yes’ instead of ‘no’. But jokes apart, if you read, you develop yourself. It is rightly said, ‘a book takes us to different worlds sitting in one place’. Your vocabulary, diction, understanding, and so forth develop when you are in constant touch with books. I was not so fortunate to go to an excellent school where English was cultivated, but my habit of reading helped me a long way in overcoming my shortcomings of English. So parents, develop habits which you will be proud to see in your child. Read or try to inculcate the habit of reading in your child. It takes time, but it is worth that while.

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Mrs Swetha Pai


Well, I ended up taking a book “Wonder” by R.J Palacio. Before I left work read just 5 pages and I was hungry to read more. During my train travel read and kept on doing the same in my rick ride home….. Had a break as my little munchkin was waiting for me. After I played and put her to sleep again ended up reading with a flashlight (an old habit that is too good to let go off) as I was way too captivated to stop…. I shared my excitement with the first class I got on Monday ie 7D and guess what? Most kids were asking for that book to issue I got to know. It is amazing how a book can change your perspective in so many ways and make you more positive again. I realized after reading the book that there is an August (Auggie) around us maybe not the one described in the book. We are all flawed humans with so many defects and at times we are ashamed of it when people judge us with that in mind only, A Charlotte – who wants to do good and never wants to get in no one’s bad books, A Jack Will- who does wrong and tries to right it, A Julian who has no remorse of his wrong doings but later regrets…. All these kids had a story. There was a teacher who inspired them, a head who believed in them, some parents in it who knew what the kid was going through…. My conclusion is if Inclusion of education is to happen then we have to be kinder than necessary…. That is how inclusion can happen…. Like the books says “when ” YOU CAN’T BLEND IN WHEN YOU WERE BORN TO STAND OUT!!!” Why don’t we stand to be kinder, a little more understanding, a little more caring than necessary so humanity doesn’t die off……? I definitely recommend this book to all dealing with children directly or indirectly.

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Freedom is the spice of life

Shruti P.

Freedom is the spice of life

This month India celebrates its 73rd Independence Day. A big day for the nation because freedom is what has brought us all the prosperity, position and recognition as a power in the making. While we rejoice and celebrate our independence as a nation, I would want to draw attention to individual freedom. Adolescents value freedom much more than people of other ages. They want to assert their individuality and it is them to whom I direct my question, “What is freedom?” “Is freedom anything else than the right to live as we wish? Nothing else.” said Epictetus and perhaps most would agree with him but to me this is not freedom. I feel freedom is neither a pursuit for happiness without restriction, nor is it a license to do what one wishes. Freedom goes hand in hand with great responsibility and discipline of the self. It does not mean to do as you please but to do what is right and not be cowed down by the forces around, be it society, family or friends. To me it means to break every shackle that one feels is holding him/her back from achieving his/her goals. To be free means to be able to discipline ones mind, embrace responsibility, and be righteous. To be free means to be ready to take decisions on your own and being responsible for them and not to blame others if they go wrong. To be free means to think of your actions before taking the leap and check if it is driven by selfishness or self-respect and self-reliance. Mahatma Gandhi had said, “Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.” I totally agree with him but it should also include learning from those mistakes and to become better than what one already is. Freedom also means to be free from selfish desires and a wish to pull others down. Such a behaviour would only make one small. Freedom is a tool one should use to explore, experience, and evolve to be more human and to help another fellow being rise in life. To be free means to achieve such greatness that you help the fellow human beings to free themselves from their bondage and become the reason for their liberty. To me true freedom is what Nelson Mandela said, “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”

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Neha Tiwari (Counselor)

Just a thought how as a PARENT and a TEACHER or a GUIDE, one can help children to learn such a value that will last with the child forever- Follow these tips to help your child learn to be honest:
1- Avoid labels. Don’t call your child a liar.
2- Don’t ask questions when you already know the answer; this will only set them up to lie.
3- Work with your child to reduce any unnecessary stress that may be weighing them down and encouraging them to lie.
4- Avoid emphasising bad behaviour; try to bring up your child’s good behaviour rather than their bad behaviour.
5- Find out why your child is fibbing; there may be important reasons that you don’t know about.
6- Praise truth-telling instead of just punishing dishonesty.
7- Don’t forget “little white lies.” Encourage your child to be honest, but not brutally and unnecessarily honest.
8- Teach your child that lying doesn’t work; it’s never a good way to get what you want.
9- Keep your cool-don’t overreact or yell if your child lies.
10- Set a good example. The best way to teach honesty is to be honest (VanClay, 2017).

While these tips and suggestions are meant for parents, many of them can also be practiced by teachers and other caretakers as well.

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