Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Pratham Books Champion : Srini Swaminathan

As part of the International Year of the Forest, we were running the 'Awareness Today for a Greener Tomorrow' campaign. We asked our AWESOME community if they would be volunteer to become a Pratham Books Champion and conduct storytelling sessions based on the book "A King Cobra's Summer'. And again, our friends volunteered eagerly. We will be sharing the stories of all our champions through our blog.

Today's story comes from Srini Swaminathan who conducted a session in Mumbai. Srini is a 2nd year Teacher of 40 Grade 3 kids at the Dharavi Transit Camp Municipal school as a Teach For India Fellow.  Prior to Teach For India, he was working with Schlumberger Oilfield Services for eight years after graduating from BITS-Pilani. You can visit his blog or follow him on Twitter at @srini091

Why did you volunteer to be a Pratham Books Champion?

My class children started Grade 2 severely lagging behind in reading fluency and comprehension. One reason for this is because of the lack of access to good books in class/school. Over the last year I have been trying to get them excited about the joy of reading and kindling their power of imagination through books and Pratham books have been so amazingly useful in this regard. That's why I signed up for this opportunity. The collective power of so many champions reading a new book (on a Cobra !) and doing activities together on the same day is going to change things. And, lastly, I love you all so much !

Srini writes about the storytelling session at the Dharavi Transit Camp Municipal School ...

The day before the reading, I had told my Responsible Champions (my class children) that there ll be a surprise ('hiss, hiss') waiting for them in school the next day. And, some of them guessed that we ll be making a snake in class. (We had done a python in class from junk paper - see pic). On Saturday, we all went down to the school garden, cleaned it up and sat on rocks under the trees to talk about Kala, the king Cobra. While narrating the story, I was also encouraging them to enact the actions to understand what Kala was experiencing. We spent nearly an hour, enthralled by Kala's story and after that, walked around the garden imagining it to be the jungle and what the Cobra would do if he were in our garden that day. The day ended with an awesome puppet show by our volunteers.

Thank you for the book, the banner and also for the opportunity to be part of this !

Thank you Srini for spreading the joy of reading!

Click here to read the stories sent in by all the Pratham Books Champions.

Note : If any of you want to be a Pratham Books Champion and join us on our journey of getting 'a book in every child's hand', write to us at web(at)prathambooks(dot)org.

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