2021 begins beautifully. A special workshop is conducted on the 8th day of January, for the facilitators of Class VI upwards, across subject/curriculum. The resource person, Ms Nupur Aggarwal, introduces the participants (75 odd), to the nuances of the art of storytelling and how it can connect the teachers and learners better and bridge those apparently gaping gaps in communication. A Math teacher, for instance, sharing a story (anecdote or otherwise) will unfailingly draw the attention of those with the commonest of common phobia- that of numbers. Storytelling is hence not a territory monopolized by the language teachers, who any way have to delve into its magic.
Ms Aggarwal makes the entire three-hour session (from 10 AMTO 1 PM) interactive and fun-filled. She draws most of the participants out from the cocoon of inhibition and indecision, because this, according to her, is the prerequisite for aspiring to become an engaging storyteller. Making the optimum use of our voice box, facial expressions and body language too, can equip teachers to emerge as the learners’ favourite, only if the connection is well established. Stories can take us to our past and make us visit places and when we have our learners in tow, we are breaking the walls of the classroom to explore uncharted places and know fresh characters and even get to empathise with them.
The resource person’s words resonate with all since she makes us throw ourselves back to our school, college or varsity days and think about all of those mentors who are still there with us and the fact that they are out of sight, does not let them vanish off our minds. They are remembered not because of their erudition or expert handling of ideas or concepts. They have carved a permanent niche in our hearts because somewhere, some time and some how, they shared with us certain slices of their lives, through stories that can’t be forgotten, even though dry theories and concepts are (and quite quickly at that).
The session begins with Mrs Rina Singh, the Principal’s best wishes for this new innings of a year. The vote of thanks is proposed by Mr Sajeev Philip, Head of Senior School. There is no doubt that the workshop strikes the warmest chords with every participating teacher. The resource person makes almost everyone feel special, focusing on how this alone ought to be every mentor’s mission- to make our learners feel they are important, just the way they are . None would deny that the best learning happens when the learners feel they matter and their needs, always addressed.