Yes, reading and math are important. But what matters most is what kind of human beings are reading the books and doing the math!(Author unknown)
Education needs to incorporate and address skills, experiences and exposure that represent the real world, since they are equally if not more crucial in the development of an individual. Life skills at Orchid is not just an individual program, but a connecting thread that attempts to make all learning pertinent and connected with the real world.
Core agenda and Objectives
To ground learning- Provide opportunities to demonstrate how school activities connect to students lives with the “community as the laboratory” for real life learning lessons in actual situations. Students become engaged learners once they can see the relevance .
To resonate the power of relevance, Injecting value and meaning into the entire school experience- Young people need to feel that what they are doing makes a difference, contributes to the welfare of others and believe that they too can make a change. It provides a whole picture of the society our students live in.
To build social capital- In the race of developing human capital in the form of scientific, engineering expertise or sophisticated forms of literacy leading to economic expansion, social capital often gets neglected . Schools core responsibility is to develop “whole system thinking” by demonstrating that society consists of groups and sub groups but they are all part of one universe.
Create civic habits of the heart- Each act of honesty, services ,responsibility and compassion that teachers and educators encourage and model helps create moral and civic habits of the heart that instill courage to care. These habits ,shaped over a lifetime define individual conscience and determine how a person will respond when fellow human beings are hurt, attacked or victimized.
To build leaders- As a society we are facing a range of challenges. Solutions seem much more likely to emerge from people who apply their intelligence and competence to immediate problems that demand their attention. We require more people who have the capacity to make the difference, who step forward to do so.
Allow democracy to become a habit -As we go back and forth between living it and studying it, over and over, looking at democracy becoming a way of life. When students discover the interdependence of people from different social backgrounds and they learn to relate to them as equals.
STRUCTURE OF THE PROGRAM
Life skills and community projects as a formal program begin at Class V and are part of the curriculum until the student graduates from school. The program is envisioned in a way where the skills required for the developmental age, are honed in the LSO classes through activities, discussions, inviting professionals, field visits and games.
Partnering this are the community projects, programs that link the skills to real life situations. These situations represent the world that is unspoken and unseen. They are an effort to provoke questions and make us challenge our assumptions and stereotypes. In the long run, irrespective of the position they hold, these experiences are imperative for a holistic development. Each program is over 3 to 4 sessions so as to make them meaningful .Age-appropriate skills and themes are addressed in the following manner.
|Sr No.||Class||Life Skills Module||Community Project|
|1||V||Understanding yourself –how thoughts and feelings connect with behaviour and the world around.||Twinning with a neighboring municipality school|
|2||VI||Understanding yourself and the world around||Looking beyond the world as we know it- building awareness, sensitization and partnerships with TARA mobile crèche.|
|3||VII||Media Literacy – Understanding Media messages to make informed decisions and encourage positive use of Media||Responsible consumerism, awareness, responsible citizenship, partnership and sensitization. Community project with the Pune Traffic Police.|
|4||VIII||Peer pressure, critical analysis of media, Substance Abuse and Addiction||Making healthy decisions Saying “No” to drugs and alcohol. Visit to Muktangan De-addiction center.|
|5||IX||Comprehensive Sexuality Education||Visits to adoption centre's, BSSK and SOFOSH|
|6||X||Career Guidance||Career Camp|
- Community Projects, not just the icing on the cake : The “whole” idea behind community projects at TOS
- Class V :- Twinning Programme
- Class VI :- Looking beyond the world as we know it- BUILDING awareness, sensitization and partnerships Community project with TARA mobile creche.
- Class VII :- Responsible citizenship, partnership and sensitization Community project with the Traffic Police
- Class VIII : Making healthy decisions Saying “No” to drugs and alcohol
- Class IX :- Comprehensive Sexuality Education
- Class X :- Career Camp