When it comes to Maths, most children tend to shy away. Perhaps it has something to do with the numbers or the teaching method that makes the subject daunting. However, Essar Foundation believes that learning can be fun. Armed with this philosophy, the Foundation organized an origami workshop on August 4, 2012, to help young children understand basic mathematical and geometrical concepts. Held in Kharghar, the workshop targeted the children of migrant workers living in Navi Mumbai.
The event, which began at 10.30 am, saw the participation of about 20 children (of migrant laborers at Khargar) and seven Essarites, who attended as volunteers. Over the next two hours, the children were taught how to make a variety of objects, such as purses, animals, boats and hats. Through each activity, the children learnt the art of folding paper and the mathematical precision involved. Thus, in this way, they were able to understand concepts which would otherwise have been taught in a dull classroom lesson. Hence folding a square into a triangle also meant bisecting an angle and how diagonals meet at a point and then you can get a flower; all this made geometry more lively and easy to understand.
The children were all from challenged economic backgrounds and studying at the Zilla Parishad school at Kharghar where they require a lot of handholding in the maths and English curriculum. Spouses of few Essarites had also participated and gave heartwarming support. In fact a few of them pledged to associate with the children and help them in learning and teaching. Judging from the enthusiasm of the children, it was clear that they thoroughly enjoyed the activity. They showed their keenness to participate in more such workshops in the future. All in all, it turned out to be a fun-filled morning for both the volunteers and the children.