American International School, Chennai, India ~ Day 2

| February 21, 2013 | 4 Comments 

We started our second day at The American International School, Chennai, with a class of Grade 8 students, and their teachers..What a total joy! Everyone was up for a challenge! They got it. What we do is not what “a lesson” should be”. More, it is a reflection of possibilities ~ too much (and too little) all in one go. Too many objectives ~ AND too few. Not what a “real” class would do in a “real” lesson, but “exactly what a real class does in exactly the space that a real class does it”. (What an empathetic, and real, comment). A chance to reflect, think, and consider, on what possibilities there are, using simple, accessible, tools.

A quick turn around, a re-shuffle of the furniture, and we had the pleasure of spending time with the Grade 2 pupils (7-8 year olds). Where we journeyed, and the potential for exposing ourselves to tripping up, or glorious successes, was caring stuff, but the resilience of children never ceases to surprise us. These folk took off, and flew, with their imagination, creativity and inventiveness. Bubbling, wondrous, words. Well done AIS Chennai!

At the top of this mysterious plant, we enjoyed “a balanced argument” with a lad, about whether to go back down the ‘spiral stair case’ or not. He was determined that we should remain rooted to the spot, and investigating this mysterious nest. We “were” (although please don’t tell him that it was “all a little, but totally innocent, ploy… to get some fantastic, persuasive, vocabulary, out of a fellow traveller”) determined to return “to the root of this strange vegetation”, whereas he was “determined to remain “here”, up the top of a plant, as there is certainly a huge amount further to discover”! He most certainly “won the case”, and we enjoyed the world of new experiences at the top of the world, before setting off back to the base. Well done, fellow, persuasive, wanderer, and your travel mates.

One of our favourite (ever) quotes that cropped up in this session was: “I think HE wants to go back down BECAUSE HE’S SCARED!” Wonderful, and bravely humorous. A powerful, yet, at the time, small statement, which demanded a lot of respect. If this doesn’t capture the sparkle of wit, and wisdom, that flooded this moment, and many others, … “you had to be there”! Superb stuff, again, AIS Chennai!

Then, a delightful afternoon with the Grade 3 pupils, and a chance to wander through unexplored territories. For more one this, and all of our other explorations, read on…

Category: 1) Events and Training days

Comments (4)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Priya says:

    I had the opportunity to actually practice what I observed in Tim’s class with my third graders and it was like I had embarked on an adventure with my kids. I had very little idea where I was heading except that my objective was that I wanted all my to write an expressive piece. Using the panaramas website. I took my kids on a tour to the Grand Canyon and we travelled from one destination to another focussing on what we would wear on this trip and what we would eat etc etc.
    All the kids used many descriptive words and it was great to see the kids going beyond what they usually would do. I would like go thank Tim Rylands for giving us such an insight how you can turn a simple picture into an adventure. It’s been an amazing time the entire way and to learn how to involve kids in depth.

  2. Brenna says:

    Notes from a 3C Writer’s Notebook:

    “Funny, good afternoon, very funny, crazy, friends, sticks, Mr. Walker, coat buttons, breath, bald, bats, deserted village, bushes, flying leaves, cave, called a hand a ripple, likes everything, old, accent, good at names, smoke like clouds.”

    “Standing here, looking out the leaves struggling to get away. The houses all deserted, the chimney pushing the smoke to join the others…”

    An eye into one student’s mind during our session. What powerful words and how powerful to read. Thank you for inspiring ALL of us, Tim and Sarah!

  3. Tim says:

    Thank you Brenna
    What a delicious delight to read a blog comment in such poetic form – playing with words in its own right – special
    What a joy
    Good luck with whatever you try first

  4. Tim says:

    Hey! You are a true Star Lady Priya
    To have your company, and involvement, over the last few days, is a true pleasure
    We admire your dynamism and “get it sorted” approach to life – an inspiration
    Well done indeed for rising to the challenge, at such short notice, of trying out the panoramas, and ideas, in such an imaginative way.
    You came back to the room looking “happily exhausted”. Not surprising when you had 30 children trying out these inventive experiments!
    Well done indeed – and – Thank You
    Tim and Sarah

Leave a Reply