Keeping with the spirit of Teachers' Day this September, the Essar Foundation celebrated mentoring in a unique way. On September 22, 2012, ten Essar volunteers and their families spent the day with a group of tribal teachers in the interiors of Wadi, at Dahanu (Maharashtra). The volunteering initiative was aimed at enabling these tribal teachers with a better pedagogy of stories and performances for their pre-primary and primary students.
The volunteers visited the tribal school Tamarind Tree in Sogve patil Pada Wadi in Dahanu. This is second initiative taken by the Essar Foundation towards the consistent attempts of imparting skills training and capacity building to the teachers at the school. This step has also been in keeping with the Essar Foundation's motive of working towards building a “learning India”.
All the teachers in this tribal school are from the Warli tribe. The school itself is the only one of its kind in the area, providing early childhood education to 130 tribal children.
Sananda Mukhopadhyay, who is a well-known theater professional and teaches education through theater and performance conducted the workshop. The workshop was intended to help the teachers get rid of inhibitions and become better performers in class. This workshop aimed at making teaching fun through a medium of stories and other interactive tools.
Ms. Mukhopadhyaya's concepts of teaching through performance and story creations through story circles was very well received.
In August this year, the Foundation organized for volunteers to visit the school and help the teachers use interactive tools such as puppets, story-telling and toys to teach the children.