School Projects

School is a place where you learn and then use what you have learned in your daily life through different projects which are related to the subject and we also get to explore the the things which we cannot learn from just books or the bookish knowledge. The knowledge learned by exploring tend to stay on mind longer than the bookish knowledge and taking this as an example Tong-Len try to integrate it's Secular Ethics curriculum in the outreach program. By introducing it as a play way method for the kinder gardeners and project based method for the junior and the senior students of the students, the curriculum is successfully carried out in Tong-Len.

 

There are many project that the children develop by learning from the Secular Ethics or the SEE Learning curriculum. Some of the projects are of 3 months projects and some are one month but despite the differences in the duration of the projects the students get to learn more than they learn by books. The projects may be successful or not but at the end there is always something to take away or learn from the failure or the success of the project.

 

Two of the  project are as follow:

  

1. Kindness project

2.Concept of cultivation

1. Kindness Project

In 2018, Tong-Len embarked upon its Kindness Project in order to develop the students cognitive skills through discussion, research, analysis, debate and collective decision-making.

 

The teacher helps the students understand the concept of Kindness using SEE (Social Emotional and Ethical) Learning curriculum from Emory University, then – through brainstorming - the students then analyze the idea in depth, before deciding on practical applications. After discussing the concepts from SEE Learning curriculum deeply, students put it into practice.

 

The Year 6 and 7 Group considered a number of ideas and arrived at a Class Agreement on the Project’s Dimensions – confirming their commitment to the concepts and opportunities.

The first lesson being Exploring Kindness – understanding the concept and then developing practical applications. Through Class Agreements, the children considered what Kindness is and then designed and implemented five dimensions to the Project:

 

  • Be Kind to Animals

  • Alleviation of Poverty

  • The Human Body

  • The Environment

  • Educational Institutions

In Classes 6 and 7 we decided to Be Kind to Animals so we devised a plan to take care of stray dogs: feeding them, bathing them, vaccinating them and providing them with shelter.

In Classes _ and _ we decided to work on the Alleviation of Poverty: helping the homeless and destitute in our City through building shelters, providing blankets and quilts and feeding the most needy women and young children.

Our work with Educational Institutions consists of an Outreach Programme of workshops and discussions encouraging other organisations to devise initiatives to contribute to our central theme of Making Dharamshala a Kind City.

In Be Kind to the Human Body we learn about the benefits of a balanced diet, fitness and well-being and the perils of addiction, alcohol and drugs.

 

Being Kind to the Environment encompasses a number of conservation issues such as water conservation, air pollution, deforestation and  illegal dumping

 

Encouraging individual and collective responsibility – and working with government and others - will improve the quality of life for us all.

 

  The Class 6 and 7 students have decided to embark on an Animal Rescue Plan: taking in a number of stray dogs, feeding them, washing them, giving them shelter and vaccinations – and even celebrating their birthdays!

 

Be Kind to the Human Body: a range of topics can be tackled such asdiet, health, fitness sex education, drug and alcohol addiction and welfare for both ourselves and others. Techniques that may be used include class talks and discussion; videos and on-line information and materials; workshops and lectures.

 

Tong-Len has adopted the “Friends Approach” in this Dimension. By making friends with someone new. Students can help them understand how to look after themselves, avoiding the perils of drugs, alcohol and other bad influences. By explaining this to others they deepen their own understanding of the subject and confirm their long-term commitment to Kindness.

Be Kind to Animals: the children of Tong-Len have considered a number of ways to be Kind to both domestic and wild animals. On an individual basis helping hungry or injured animals; or as a group providing a safe habitat with shelter, water and woodland are practical examples of applying Kindness.

Be Kind to the Environment: this dimension can encompass a number of conservation issues and offers potential for collaborating with other organizations. Water conservation (reducing waste; keeping it clean); air pollution (traffic congestion; fuel efficiency; factory and farming practices) and afforestation (preserving and planting trees) could potentially be addressed, working with – for example - the Police, oil companies or local authorities. Engendering a sense of individual accountability for the environment, Tong-Len envisages everyone taking responsibility for their own garbage – helping to create a cleaner environment. If enough people can be encouraged to change their habits for the better, it can create a rubbish-free, more pleasant, Kinder City.  

Be Kind to the Environment: this dimension can encompass a number of conservation issues and offers potential for collaborating with other organizations. Water conservation (reducing waste; keeping it clean); air pollution (traffic congestion; fuel efficiency; factory and farming practices) and afforestation (preserving and planting trees) could potentially be addressed, working with – for example - the Police, oil companies or local authorities. Engendering a sense of individual accountability for the environment, Tong-Len envisages everyone taking responsibility for their own garbage – helping to create a cleaner environment. If enough people can be encouraged to change their habits for the better, it can create a rubbish-free, more pleasant, Kinder City.  

 

Be Kind to Non-Living Things: (Be Kind to Society): this Dimension could involve influencing a range of social behaviors and public policies such as road safety and litter collection. These may involve public campaigns and collaborating with existing initiatives such as pledging to support the Clean India Mission of the SBA (the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan) or working with the MCD (Municipal Council of Dharamshala) and Panchayat.

 

Alleviation of Poverty: despite India’s economic development and burgeoning middle-class, extreme poverty is still a major issue across the nation with large numbers of people – and children in particular - living on, or below, the “bread line” i.e. without a basic standard of living. Tong-Len believes no child should go to sleep hungry or without having safe shelter

Initiative in the slums: Tong-Len was originally founded to help the several thousand people living in the slums around Dharamshala. In those areas many people still do not get two decent meals a day, they sleep in the open without proper bedding and do not have access to clean water and proper sanitation. As a result, malnutrition and disease is common and child mortality is unacceptably high: newborn babies frequently die, particularly in the cold winter months. To begin to tackle this, the students of Tong-Len decided to build a shelter in the slum community to provide some protection for new mothers and young children. Blankets and quilts are provided for those most in need.

Tong-Len students built shelter for 3 negligent ladies. Tong-Len students will be ensuring if they are getting decent meals or not until they set up a kitchen in the newly built shelter. Students themselves have taken the initiative to look after these ladies’ wellbeing.

2. The concept of cultivation

It was a 3 month project, which got started from september 2019 and ended on november 2019. The project was developed to make the students understand the concept of kindness through an example of a flower. The main reason to conduct this project was to inculcate the children about ‘cultivation of Kindness’ and it is easily inculcated by taking the example of a flower. Just as many different things are needed to take into considerations while planting a flower until it blooms fully, visa versa there are different things to be taken into considerations while cultivating kindness as well. Such as good intention, understanding of the other person’s need, good motivation, selfless motive and etc. So if we take all of this into consideration while cultivating kindness, we would be embodying it the correct way and so to make the children embody it in a correct way, the project was undertaken and it proved to be successful even though the flowers didn’t bloom on time.