Sunday, January 27, 2019

Anjali - And the Dam Broke!

The school has its academic fair coming up. Anjali's class had 'Save the environment' as a theme. She and Brahmani decided on the model of a dam. Thermocol was bought, dams researched and a dam was built.
Version 1 - No Gates

The model needed some more changes like gates and other stuff and the two used toothpicks and other material to make their dam with gates. Some help was sought from Vasu who builds actual gates for real dams.
Version 2 - With gates

The dam was deposited at the school to be kept in readiness for the show. Barely half an hour after she got home there was a call from the school. While shifting the dam it fell and broke. They tried to fix it but it was not working. Anjali kept her cool and when I walked in asked me if we could go to school and get the dam.

The dam was shattered to pieces. It was a pile. Her face was stoic as she walked out with the pile. The Vice principal Radhika offered to help. The teacher told her not to worry and take it to heart.

The most interesting part in this whole episode was to do with S, the girl who was moving the dam when it fell. S was very brave - she instantly owned up, apologized, wrote a sweet apology message and actually said she would build it back for them. Anjali and Brahmani were just as sweet and wrote back saying she should not worry and not feel bad and they could fix it. That was a nice exchange and I loved the ease with which they moved on. Good for you S for owning up an offering to build. It takes rare courage and integrity. And good for you Anjali and Brahmani for not once complaining and getting on with the job. Not one word, or even a sign of a complaint. They knew it was an accident and that was it. I don't see too many adults - starting with me - doing that. Stuff to learn from both parties.

Anjali and Brahmani got together again because they had to rebuild their dam. A few hours of work and it was in place. More colorful and according to them more sturdy. 'We did all kinds of tests,' said Anjali. 'The drop test, the hang test. It won't break now.'
New dam - more colorful and stronger
The next day we shifted the dam to the school.

Yesterday we went to the Academic Fair. It was really nice. They had little stalls and every child prepared on some subject and bombarded us with questions and quizzes. There was so much to learn. And they were so encouraging - the little girl who first quizzed me on some Telugu proverbs gave me a star even after I got many things wrong. Anjali's class had model of a magnetic levitating train (Sahith and Sripad), eco friendly 'green' homes (Mansi and Divya), dams (Anjali and Brahmani), producing electricity from lemons (Yeswantt and Rishab), a quiz on renewable and non-renewable energy (Jashmitha and Apoorva), Hasini and Manha (conserving natural resources), Saketh and Keerthan (carbon footprint and hydroelectric project), Kartikeya (Ways to save environment, Ooho), Shivani (puppet show on saving environment).
Presenting their dam and various types of dams
They all performed a dance on the popular ban plastic song 'Tik tik tik' which was very nice. Then there was a short skit on the future of the world if we continue to misuse our resources. Scary.

Shobhs and I then went to watch the seventh class children. They had some wonderful stalls about the cosmos - archeoastronomy, blackholes, telescopes. The clarity and conviction behind the team that explained the concept of black holes and singularity was exceptional. Anjali had told me to listen to them because she did not understand it fully.

I had to tear myself away at 11 but seriously, this is the kind of stuff you could stay

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