October 2017 Newsletter
School reopens for second term
After a refreshing and festive Pooja holidays, the school reopened on 3rd of October for second term. Right in the middle of the academic calendar, second term sets the tone for intensive learning at Swabodhini. With the routines fully established, students and teachers easily slide into the rhythm and hit the ground running.
The personal hygiene theme was taken up further in detail, with introduction of more personal hygiene based vocabulary words. Reading, listening, introduction to pronouns, adjectives, formation of sentences, answering to simple questions of picture comprehension by writing, telling or joining words were done.
Students were also taught detailed conceptual learning of brushing and bathing in steps, pros and cons of maintaining oral and body hygiene. Students also had some exciting story telling sessions with story cards related to personal hygiene and the importance of it.
Group counting and identification of quantity of objects as a group and matching it with the numeral was taught to students.
New activities like scrap book maintenance by students, bead work, note pad making were introduced.
Number concepts like grouping of objects and identification of quantity, understanding the concept of place value of numbers -units and tens through ice cream sticks and place value flash cards were taught to students.
Life skills like folding small and big towels, t-shirts and bedsheets, wiping tables, chairs, windows, sweeping and handling dustpan were introduced to the pre vocational students.
All in school communications like circulars, consent forms, flash cards are now being typed and printed by our vocational students. Students of office administration skills training were taught labeling of files and stationery items, arrangement of shelves, sorting of papers and files.
All other training activities were carried out as per curriculum and lesson plans.
New vocational training at Swabodhini:
Swabodhini constantly tries to explore different activities by which we can bring out the best in our students. Also, only when we give our students a wide range of exposure, we get to discover their skills and interest. In this endeavor, we have started teaching our students beading activity using beads of different sizes and colours, from which beautiful necklaces, anklets, ear rings are stringed.
Containers are numbered as per sequence and the students are guided to string the respective beads independently. This activity makes our students understand the concept of sequencing, identifying similar items, colour concepts and also improves their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. Some students have taken to this activity like fish to water.
This term, our primary students went to Snow World in Abirami Mega Mall for their experiential visit. This is the first time that the students went on a sensory based experiential visit, whereas all our previous visits were based on academics / learning.
For most of our students, this was the first time they experienced such cold temperatures and snow. We thank Mrs. Nalammai Ramanathan for generously allowing our students to visit and experience snow world free of cost.
Visitor at Swabodhini:
This month, we had Mr. Kevin Dill, Chief Operating Officer of EasterSeals, Central Illinois come and visit the school with reference from Dr. V Viswanathan – pediatric neurologist. EasterSeals is a US based organization that provides remedial and learning services to children with autism and other special needs. They have also started a special school this year.
Mr. Dill visited Swabodhini to get inputs on running a special school and spent a full day here, interacting with our staff, students and director. We are looking forward for sustained cooperation between Swabodhini and EasterSeals in terms of sharing of resources and best practices.
In October, a lot of our activities centered on Diwali.
Bulk order for corporate gifting:
Ms. Kavitha Divakar placed a bulk gift order for DVS Advisors LLP for making 100 gift bags of diyas, hand painted by our students, packed in lovely handmade eco-friendly paper bags that were again done by our students. Needless to say, we are very thankful to Ms. Kavitha for the opportunity, who was very happy with the elegant gift packages
If you would like to place bulk orders, please write to firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
As a show of our love and gratitude for our well-wishers, our students made beautiful “Happy Diwali” post cards. Painted by the students on regular post cards, these were mailed to our well-wishers, who were delighted to receive this thoughtful gesture from our students.
Swabodhini set up stalls at Maersk and Sterling Holidays, showcasing the diyas and paper bags made by our students. The staffs of both the corporates came forward and showed tremendous support for the stall. We are very happy to say that this is the second consecutive year that we are doing the Diwali stall at Sterling Holidays.
Maersk enticed their staff by offering to pay 50% of the price of the products, so that the employees had to buy the products at only 50% of the cost. It was a wonderful opportunity to showcase the products made by our students at Maersk’s premises, where we could reach out to more than 500 employees.
Anandam Deepavali – VGP Visit:
Every year, Rotary International District -3232 celebrates Diwali by arranging a fabulous outing to VGP Universal Kingdom to students from various NGOs. Swabodhini’s students have also been a part of the celebrations. This year too, our prevocational and vocational students had a fabulous time at VGP Universal Kingdom, where everything – right from breakfast to lunch were organized by Rotary.
The highlight of the day out was obviously the fun rides. Our students, who struggle with crippling sensory challenges, surprisingly adapted and enjoyed the joy rides.
Diwali Celebrations at School:
Finally, we wrapped up the Diwali fever by having a great celebration at school. Sweets were distributed by the school to all the staff.
One of our well-wishers, Mr. Bharat Kumar brought sweets for all the students and staff. Crackers were burst by students and staff, greetings were exchanged and a lot of love was shared.
Post Diwali, our students were in for a cake treat, which was generously sponsored by Mr. Sriram, Global Head of Commercial at Maersk.
World Mental Health Day Celebrations - Samatva:
As a part of World Mental Health Day Celebrations, Inner Wheel Clubs of District 323 organised a program called “Samatva” at The Banyan Adaikkalam. Noted pianist and musician, Mr. Anil Srinivasan was the Chief Guest and he gave a wonderful talk on the relation between mind and music. The club members donated saris and clothes to various NGOs associated with mental health and Swabodhini was also a part of the event.
The donated clothes were given to the helpers at Swabodhini, who have been ably supporting the teachers and lovingly taking care of our students.
We wrapped up this month with the month end PTA meeting. Special focus of the meeting was the MNRI follow up workshop that was conducted by our Head of Therapy Ms. Akhila and our consultant Therapist Mr. Saravanan.
In June, Swabodhini introduced MNRI therapy for selected students, based on their therapy requirements. Parents reported considerable improvement in behavior issues in their wards with the therapy. Based on this feedback we would be starting MNRI therapy as a separate wing of service extended to students with autism. Click here to know more about MNRI therapy at Swabodhini