After briefly discussing the idea 2-3 times, the principal finally announced to the teachers that she wishes to have an assembly in place every day. Seizing the opportunity, I pitched in the idea of a class wise assembly every week. Once or twice when we’ve had an assembly in the school, it has been only the prayer and the national anthem. And that too has been sung at different tones, pitches and speeds…..
I remember my days and school and how exciting it used to be to be chosen to read the news or an article in front of the entire school. In fact, whatever little public speaking abilities I have now, can be traced back to 7th grade assembly stage of KV no.2, CPE, Itarsi. The first time I was asked to read the news by the class teacher, I was terrified. I kept cursing my luck for being chosen. But eventually over the years, public speaking bridged the gap between diffidence and confidence on stage.
And that is why I’m very sure that encouraging children to speak publicly, in this context, speaking in English publicly will be a great opportunity for personality development of the kids in the school, not just my class. Of course, I am super excited about my lil ones being on stage, that is one of the important motivating factors in me strongly encouraging this idea. :)
Principal ma’am didn’t mention any specific ideas on how and what of the assemble structure. After a few conversations with her and the PT teacher, we put together a format for the assembly and informed the class teachers about it. But somehow to the idea did not get messaged well and the class teacher just handed in a couple of kids to the PT teacher and well….asked her to take it from here. The class teacher is the most fitting person to scout for and select the kids to bring out their special abilities, their potential, if that doesn’t happen…then the whole purpose of this assembly idea is lost.
So this Tuesday, with the principal’s permission, I’ve initiated the idea of a meeting tomorrow (Tomorrow being the last working day of the month (31 Aug 2010) and hence a half day). The idea and intent behind this initiative needs to be messaged effectively and also the procedure needs to outlined clearly. Sent out a formal circular on Saturday so hopefully it’ll be attended by all teachers.
Have put out an agenda (on a chart paper)…….Hopefully doesn’t look to pushy to the teachers and is well received….
The meeting took place yesterday…
Went in an explained the whole meeting agenda to the principal in the morning and requested her to conduct the meeting. I thought that the idea should be messaged through the right channel and what better, than the school leadership to do that. The meeting was held in my classroom, and I pinned the agenda sheet to the blackboard. The meeting was ok. Not as great as I’d expected it to be, obviously it wasn’t really met with a great deal of enthusiasm…. It was greeted with some cynicism by the staff, but I totally understand where that stems from. At a salary of one and a half grand, working for 5 hours every day non-stop is taxing enough, and all this calls for a lot of extra effort. After a series of conflicts and questions, the meeting got over. But at least I’m happy that the teachers have now bought the concept of a morning assembly with the structure we proposed.
- Prayer [Hindi Music Choir, that the PT teacher will put together]
- Command [One boy/girl chosen every week]
- Thought for the day
- Special Article [In case of some celebration….]
- National Anthem [Hindi Music choir]
From no assembly to this, it’s a great thing for the school and for the kids. Provided the rain gods are not working overtime, hopefully the assembly will be in place 13 Sept onwards.