After three years our first batch of open schoolers – Asha, Anil and Arun – are preparing for their 10th grade exams in April-May 2021. They also conduct daily sessions with the kids where they pass on their learning. Now, it is high time for the next generation of the Janwaar village kids to share the responsibility of the Villa and follow the footsteps of the open schoolers. We’ve set up a few initiatives to help them in this process.

Mannan, who was for more than two years with the Janwaar kids, has taken the initiative to train two kids of the next generation. The open schoolers had to select two kids from the village according to their capabilities. They shortlisted two out of a list from eight: Kalpana (14 yeras old) and Priyanka (13). Priyanka is bold and powerful with a desire to learn. Since we have set up the computers in the villa, she has somehow made time from her busy household to come and learn about the computers. Kalplana is a little shy but always has a smile on her face. She is one of the little skateboarding champions. Their first task is to think of the activities they want to conduct in the Villa.

Kalpana (right) and Priyanka in their first skype call with Mannan.

They will learn while helping Asha and Anil in their sessions and parallel conduct sessions on their own. This will ensure they get the guidance they needed while at the same time they are independent to shape their own sessions. Mannan will mentor them once a week – they will share their experiences, difficulties faced and work done by them.

Arun, one of our open schoolers, has made a deal with us. He desperately wants a new skateboard, so we said you have to do something for it! Part of the deal is that he has to conduct daily exercise sessions in the villa. He will do it with two other kids from the Villa, Rajaram and Vinay. Both of them are the next superstars in skateboarding.

They have showed quick learning and athleticism in skateboarding. Now, they have the chance to learn from Arun and then conduct exercise sessions on their own. I believe this will be a perfect example of passing on the learning – our core idea.

I myself conduct one on one sessions with Kalpana, Vinay, Sachin, Priyanka and Dilasha. Whenever I find one of them hovering around in the Villa, I just challenge them. For example Sachin was asking for a new skateboard deck. I said if you can write a message to Ulrike, which will include what you have been doing and why do you deserve the deck, then she might think about it. We recorded this message and sent it to Ulrike.

One thing I personally learned from this was to make the task according to the kid. I have asked Sachin to write a few lines before too but he always used to get distracted and run away. But this time he stuck to his task and completed it because he really wanted the deck.

With these steps we provide the NEXT GENERATION a platform to learn.

Driving change means always facing challenges. The month of March marks the beginning of the harvesting season and it means a lot of work for the parents. As a result the work for the girls increases dramatically because the parents are in the fields and reduces the time they usually would spent at the Villa or skatepark. However, the challenges are only there to make us better. We will keep moving forward.

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