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Ratipriya speech at the admittance day for the Primrose school in Chennai (Madras)

 

One hundred years from now it will not matter what car you drove, what kind of house you lived in, how much you had in your bank account or how your clothes looked like.

But the world will be a little bit better because you were important in the life of a child.

As a good parent, you provide shelter for your child, you feed your child with healthy nourishing food. In the same way, it is imperative that you provide a good atmosphere with excellent facilities and feed your child’s brain with wholesome, healthy, nourishing, educative thoughts- for these are the very foundation of a genius.

There are innumerable examples of children who have performed wonders and have been proclaimed genius

*           A child who could recite long Sanskrit verses at the drop of a hat.

*           A child who would push aside his set of playing blocks and talk to you about Angkor vat – the Kancheepuram temple built by King Surya Varman II in dedication to Lord Vishnu.

*           Yet another child would glance at a long column of numbers and give you the total even before you could pull out a calculator.

Is every such child a genius?

Yes- but even as we marvel at such geniuses, we do not stop to think of the tremendous inputs that have gone into the child’s fresh mind. The atmosphere and the environment for awakening the genius in the child has been provided by the parents who care- who believe.

Let us take a small questionnaire-

*           Your 2 year old tries to open a box full of biscuits.

             Do you reprimand him and take the box from him?

*           Your child plays with mud and water.

             Do you exclaim in horror, promptly wash his hands and seat him on the bed surrounded by clean toys?

*           If he sits happily watching cartoons, commercials or soaps,

             Do you contently look at him and go back to do the work at hand?

*           His inquisitive fingers have found your lipstick, wondering why he is so quiet you look inside your bedroom, you gasp in horror when you see the red slashes on his face, his hands and his clothes.

             Is it time for another rebuke?

If your answers were NO – Hats off to you – you are in the right place with the right set of people.

If you are a YES parent – you too are in the right place – it would be a good time to examine yourself and see and understand what lies behind your reaction. You would better take a good long look at yourself and your attitude. You could be suppressing your child’s curious and exploratory abilities.

Way back in the year 2000, Primrose , Pondicherry  was in a house in a well- known residential area. A not very hip – hop and happening building. But as I walked in – I just have these 2 words to describe what I saw – joyous learning.

Then I did not know who Glen Doman was. But the collection of books they had and the joy on the children’s faces … (by the way, not one child was seated – some were playing, some were painting and colouring including their faces and clothes and a couple of them were riding piggy back on the teacher!)  - I believed that was the place for my children.

Ever since - there has been no looking back.

What we learn through pleasure – we never forget.

My daughter, when she was in LKG came home talking about rain forests and believe me – hibernation – mind you, she explained what hibernation was and wanted to know if Winnie the Pooh, too hibernated.

My son, came back from school in class II and talked to me about the Challenger II space shuttle disaster, and there were a barrage of questions about space shuttles, NASA, Kalpana Chawla and what not.

The icing on the cake was when all of us were watching the World Cup foot ball match and my daughter started reading out the country names of the flags that were displayed.

I am sure that many of us present here do not remember when and why the Battle of Panipat was fought. We do not know the difference between alluvial and rock soil. To us, chemistry is a cocktail of alphabets and a few numbers.

Do you remember all the laws of gravity? Can you take a shrub or look at an animal and give the name of its kingdom?

Or can you explain a math theorem you studied in school?

Why have we not retained what we learnt? – simple, what is learnt through pleasure is never forgotten.

The fun – to – learn credo at Primrose has amazed me time and again.

Smaller teacher – student ratio and the methodology of teaching is what has made Primrose what it is today.

The curriculum might be same as in any other school, but the techniques of teaching is so amazing that a solid base is formed and the toppings are joyous, confident, curious children who learn at an incredible pace.

No note–learning, no tons of home work in their backpacks – children come home in the evening to play and relax and to go for a drawing class or a music class or for some sports activities, if they wish to.

Genius is a rarity. Now that education is widespread all over the world, the frequency of geniuses appearing on the horizon must rise.

Formal education, as we know of, is dead and lifeless. But here, education is converted into a process of learning. When a child is freed from dead formal education and his learning process is organized to acquire mental power, he or she has a great chance of becoming a genius.

Come let us join hands with Primrose and set our children on the great glorious sunshine filled path towards making this world filled with a bed of genius.

Give your child all you have got – it is worth it.

 

 
 
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