Other Activities

Grooming for Excellence – Balavikas Summer Camp � 2012

No of Days — 2 1/2 days

Proposed Days — 20,21 & 22 April or10,12 & 13 May

Agenda:

1. Registration, Group allocation

2. Introduction, Objectives of Camp

3. Overview of the camp schedule, briefing of activities

4. Camp song – to be learnt by the students beforehand

5. Memories of past summer camps by students who participated in Earlier Camps>

6. Project Presentation – Unit wise Children are asked to do assignments on the Contributions of Sri Sathya Sai Avathar to the Humanity through Dharmasamthapanam (Vedodharanam, Vidwadposhanam and Bhaktha Samrakshnam). Gurus can motivate the students for this. The children must be allotted at least 2 weeks time for preparing this. Unit wise Presentation on this can be done on the First day itself.

7. Bhajan quiz as in previous camps

8. Learning New : The students are motivated to learn 2 or 3 Slokas of Say Mathrupanchakam OR Bhajagovindam OR some stanzas from Harinamakeerthanam or Jnanappana or Sivashtakam or Viswanathashtakam .( Each Guru I/c of groups can select any one of these and motivate the students to learn it from the first day and let them present it on the second or third day)

9. Exhibition on Vedas, Ithihas, Puranas, Scriptures, Great Works of Sankaracharya. Quiz may be conducted based on that. ( Preparation need to be done earlier)

10. Organise a Go-pooja / vrikshapooja / pakshiyoottu session if possible. Otherwise organise some other activity to remind the participants of their responsibility to nature (like planting plants / trees in samithi with provision to take care of them in future). The students must be able to develop kindness to Animals so that they will lead life with pure Vegetarian food.

11. Interaction with a guest of honour

12. Camp fire, value games, group activities

13. A  hour Session on: Swami’s Love towards Balavikas Students – Senior Gurus can explain different occasions when Swami had shown and expressed His Love & compassion to Balavikas Students during different BV conferences in Parthi. It would be touching experiences when we can narrate the 1983 BV Conference when Swami saved thousands of Children from Heavy downpour & thunder

14. Web Charting on Sri Sathya Sai Village Integrated Programme

15. A 15 minute Session of Vidyagopala Manthrarchana.

16. Sai’s children & their Role to become ideal citizens of the country – Love towards Parents – Mission of Role Modelling against Social Evils – Theme expression through role plays. Each team discusses and enacts practical life situations

17. Experiences of the camp by students

18. Parents Session

19. Finalisation of Action plan, announcement of the content of the follow-up programmes

20. Mangala Arathi – This will be performed by Group of Students from Each Group and also by the Gurus. More number of Arathithattu may be arranged for this. This will give the Students a proud satisfaction that they performed Arathi on Bhagawan

21. One Session must be for Video Presentation on Swami. LCD projectors may be used for this

Note :

A.The camp must be Residential.

B.Age of Children as in the previous years.

C.Those students who have completed their Group III exam but not completed their projects may be permitted to attend the camp.

D.As in the previous years Very good food must be given for the participants

E.All the sessions must be very lively and the students must be able to grasp the lesson from each session.

F.The objective of the Camp must always be taken care of. By the end of the Camp the participants must be able to take the good lessons learned, atleast some of them for their immediate implementation

G.The above programmes are indicative. If the districts feel that all of them cannot be accommodated , please select programmes best suited to you and complete the agenda with continuous lively sessions.

Innovative teaching in balavikas

With the emergence of the change in Balavikas functioning to make the students to stick on to the system, we may have to definitely change the style of functioning

This can be done without sacrificing the core values. The concept of Balavikas “Session” in place of “Class” can contribute a lot in this direction.

For Group 1 & Group II, where the students are below the age of 10 the classes can be made effective by adopting little changes. Especially for Rural Balavikas , the following can be well adopted.

1. Instead of taking classes inside four walls , students are taken outside i.e. under banyan trees , inside gardens , temple premises , near rivers etc. The topic of the day is to be suitably selected from the syllabus. For eg: Suppose the topic is Panchabhoothas , we can very easily convey the message , if class is held in river banks. If the Value of Spreading Love among all including plants , an atmosphere of Garden is a must. Here we can tell the story of Father of Horticulture “Luther Burbank” & Paramahamsayogananda . The story is the Best Example of “Love” Similarly , if we are taking the class of Silent Sitting or concentration , a calm atmosphere in a Garden where they can listen to the Natures Sound or we can have a very good joy ride.

The advantage of this type of changing the venue of the session is that the students will have more memory power and they never forget what has been learned. Once in a month or so this can be repeated at different venues. When we select temple atmosphere , there are tremendous advantage of having variety of examples to show the students about the Moorthi of the Temple , associated story , Sloka , Bhajan etc . The venue change is also good for taking up group activities

2. The students are shown different activities in the class itself. For eg : The Padanamaskaram to Parents. We can invite one or two parents as Guests of the day to the Class. The respective students are asked to speak about the positive qualities of their parents in their very presence. Similarly the parents also show their love by speaking the positive qualities of their child. There can be a small paada pooja. If one session like this can be conducted, the other students also will have a tendency to invite their parents. Thus the general awareness of the class will be increased and thus the drop outs can be prevented. Similarly several such small celebration , say appreciation sessions can be held in the class. Say on Birthday , say for appreciation on achieving good marks , or Parents Wedding Anniversary and other similar occasions. The scope of modern technique of Appreciative Management can be very well used for improving our Balavikas Classes

The advantages of these techniques are these involve No Extra Cost or Time or Other Resources and the children will definitely like this.

3. The Value of Kindness to Animals and many stories of Ramana Maharshi , Swami, Sree Krishna etc can be well explained by showing the children the importance of Bird Feeding ( in all houses let a small mug of water kept outside for birds , spread some rice outside for ants ) , Gopooja (Importance of PanchaMaathas) etc. Several such traditional beliefs can be better utilised so that the students can be easily directed towards attaining the quality of Love & Kaarunya. These can be very easily adopted in 75% of the Balavikas Classes without much effort. The impact will be very high.

4. The students of Group III can be motivated by making them activity oriented . For Eg : like debates , visit to Asylums , hospital wards , small cleaning works along with Sevadals , Invited Lectures by eminent speakers , Usage of Multimedia for Teaching etc. Similarly application of Swami’s Book on “Leadership ” , ie the Benjamin Franklin method of changing the Habits can be well utilised for the Group III students. The Teacher should assist the children in selecting the habit on priority basis because the teacher knows better which habit for which students should come first …..

5. The Balavikas students are asked to write Swami’s advices on piece of papers and these papers are used for making Vibhoothi packets. Once the packet is unfolded after the Bhajan, the devotees will read this which mostly will answer their problems. The students are thus getting familiarized with Swami’s teachings.