[edit] Vibha Children's Day (1st Std) - Hope School, KB Sandra - Oct. 18th, 2008

- Ashish - Vibha Bangalore Team

On the dawn of 18th, we started a journey, the pursuit of happiness ;).

We were excited thinking of our previous hilarious experiences with the kids.

Adventures for Venky began early in the morning when he found that getting Potter's wheel inside the car is not an easy job. The wheel was made of clay, so rolling it was out of question. It had to be lifted. It was too heavy to carry even for 3-4 of us.. and Venky and Abhay dint have any source of help.. huh!! With some great effort they were able to get the potter and his wheel inside. Considering this, they reached school about half an hour late but we were overwhelmed !! Abhay and his creamy trouser, already enjoying the flavor of the Potter's wheel, Venky ,all sweating, and Payal finally reached the school (new campus).

In the mean time Lakshmi had started preparations for the treasure hunt. When we all saw the charts and clues that were prepared by Lakshmi we were awestruck. It was such an effort, drawing/painting charts (at least six of them), for each chart having different pictures, numbers and clues. It was amazing. So before Abhay/Venky/payal reached the school, Lakshmi with the help of Jey, Satish, Vishal, had hidden all the clues. When Abhay reached, the treasure hunt team was ready. Then Lakshmi explained them the plan.

Along with this, Pottery team (Venky, Payal and Satish) was engaged in balloon blowing. We had to use our natural resources for blowing balloons. But Venky, Payal and Satish were so good that they had blown more than 50-60 balloons in short time and were still full of energy to welcome kids.

When we found out that Arvind would not be able to join us for the event, I was thinking, how would we do awareness session without him?. But when we saw charts, that he had prepared, they were really awesome, self explanatory, with wonderful sketches( I really liked the way he had painted the germs :D). Rajesh and Lakshmi understood it easily, did few modifications for Kannada, and they were ready to take over awareness session.

Now getting Potter's wheel inside the school was another great exercise. Venky had to get his car all the way into the new school area (I still wonder how did he manage that through those narrow roads!). This time we had enough volunteers for the task (Thanks to Satish, Rajesh, Abhay and Venky), they climbed the Everest easily.

Kids were yet to come and So many things were happening already, it was turning out to be an eventful day!

Then came Kala ma'm and other teachers, telling us that kids are ready. I and Abhay went to old school to escort the kids, with there sweet 'Namaste Sir's. Kids, full of energy, were all excited. Not knowing Kannada can be disadvantageous, but not so much. We could only ask them "What is your name", but kids would answer with so much enthusiasm "My name is Nandini sir". That made me far happier than having long conversations. We took them to the new school. When they saw potter getting ready with his wheel they were soooo happy, all talking to each other (I dont know what, but I could read there faces :)).

Payal and Venky then split the children in two groups. One group with Pottery team and the other with treasure hunt team.

Vishal brought second group for treasure hunt inside the school classroom. Kids were split into five teams in a cool way by him, the kids enjoyed it a lot. Now each volunteer in treasure hunt team(four of them) had to handle one team, so I availed myself for the fifth team(I must say I was lucky.. to get the opportunity..). Each team was given a chart and they had to solve the puzzles to get the clue. Lakshmi and Rajesh took up the tough charts. Lakshmi explained kids what they were supposed to do, and to my surprise they understood it very easily, Lakshmi must have given it a great thought (Explaining treasure hunt to 1st/2nd standard is no less than a challenge). Once the game started, we helped kids with charts. Abhay, Vishal and myself, we employed all the languages that we could imagine (facial expressions, hands, fingers, a few kannada words that we learnt newly and some english words). Hema mam also helped us a lot to convey the message.

Rajesh's chemistry with the children was really good. I could not understand, his chart was supposed to be tough one, but for both the groups his team finished the chart first! Abhay's teams followed (which is an achievement considering he doesn't understand Kannada at all ;)). After solving chart puzzles, the real fun started, searching the clues. Once they found those clues they got the final clue which was golden key hidden near the church. We were running all over with kids. Abhay and Vishal must have made around 7-8 rounds of church :). And my team found it first.. woohoo !! my team won !!

Followed by this there was another fun event Balloon bursting. Abhay, Vishal, Lakshmi and Rajesh were charged up. Kids were split in two groups. Blown up balloons were stung to kids' ankles and they were ready to fight it out ! Kids were running all over the ground, trying to save their own balloon and to burst others'. It was great fun. After balloon bursting session it was the time for awareness session. Lakshmi took care of the first group. It was highly interactive session. Rajesh/Lakshmi explaining charts, asking questions, discussing and laughing at kids' innovative answers. It turned out to be good learning for kids about daily hygiene. Thanks to Arvind!!

In the mean time, we had pottery session going on for other group. Payal, Venky took turns holding the kids hands to guide the clay taking shape into fascinating objects from pots to pans to diyas to cups (Payal is our new SME in pottery now!). Kids were using all there creative skills. You could see all the different and wonderful shapes created. Volunteers, teachers and even our local friends from Kaval Byrasandre took turns in creating art.

Thankfully, the kids kept their clothes neat and clean. Satish was always there fetching water and cleaning and towel drying the kids hands and palms. Jey was everywhere taking snaps. Your team won and you want a photo, Jey is already there. Kid is making beautiful pot, Jey is there. Kids searching for clues, he is ready snapping them. Omnipresent Jey !!

After this we had snacks for kids. Payal and Satish then conducted some fun games with kids. They played passing the parcel. Kids enjoyed it so much that we had to force them into the classroom for the next round of games.

And groups were switched, first group doing treasure hunt and second doing pottery. Abhay, Lakshmi, Rajesh, Vishal were all around with kids, with no less energy than the first session. This time Vishal's team (rather Vishal :P) won the treasure hunt. We had balloon bursting followed by treasure hunt, another fun filled session. Awareness session was now taken by Rajesh. Second group did their pottery with Venky, Payal and Satish.

Then was the time we all were waiting for. Everyone on the dance floor :). It was great fun.. Especially Vishal, Satish, Payal.. all along with children, dancing. Kids dancing with us in circles, making trains, you could see everything happening on the floor. But we had to stop when it was getting late.

Jey had in the mean time made all certificates ready. We had prize distribution ceremony for winners of Treasure hunt and balloon bursting. Jey then distributed certificates and Vishal distributed chocolates to kids. It was followed final photo session. Kids left with their "Bye Sir".

We packed up, ready to go. But that was not all. School had arranged lunch for us. It was great. It was a golden day, full of fun and million dollar smiles of the kids. We felt we can't be richer than this!! Isn't it guys?

[edit] Pictures from the Event

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