I’ve been volunteering at the Shantabai Ladkat English Medium school in Nanapeth, Pune where TFI (Teach For India) fellows Kaushik, Gunvant, Moiz and Sarika are teaching 3rd and 4th Grade. Helping out in teaching or just taking care of the class or playing games with the kids, it’s been a wonderful time and I’m loving it!
Recently, our school got a huge consignment of childrens’ books donated by expatriate Indians living in the Gulf countries. We’ve received around 1400 books stuffed in 14 cartons, and everybody’s overjoyed!
With this, a new library is being set up in the school so the kids can make full use of the new resources and frog-leap in their reading skills and general knowledge.
And that’s where YOU come in! We’ve got so many amazing books for kids of all levels – right from books with under two lines a page, to the complete set of World Book Encyclopedia! We need to grade these books by reading ability, by color-coding them using a scheme we refer to as “GROWBY”, serial-number them and finally cover them in plastic to make sure they last loooonngg!
So, starting Tuesday, 21st December 2010, we’re having a week-long Volunteer Drive – call us up, get your friends together and come in anytime over the whole week to help out in grading the books! Even if you can spare just an hour, it’ll be make a huge difference and really help us to speed up the books-encoding process!
This drive will continue from Tuesday through the week and even over the weekend of 25/26 Dec, so please find a time slot in your calendar and come! Our aim is to gift the school kids a new library for Christmas / New Year!
Time: Any time between 8am to 1pm which is the normal school hours, but if you’re in a big enough group then we will create the time slot suitable to you. Make sure you call one of us so we can co-ordinate!
Moiz : +91-9819117826
Gunvant : +91-7798408929
Kaushik : +91-9823223209
Nikhil : +91-9665831250
Location: Shantabai Ladkat School
Sadar Bazaar, Nanapeth
Pune, Maharashtra, India
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Here are some pics of the kids you’ll be helping out!
>the last one : I was able to install Wikipedia for Schools offline edition in our school’s computer lab (which doesn’t have internet, of course) and in two of the Fellows’ notebooks last week! So the kids now have the world’s knowledge at their fingertips!
Find more pics on the school’s Facebook Page! Spread the word around, tell all your colleagues and your friends and let’s do a fun Library Drive for the kids!
UPDATE: 23 Dec 2010:
We've had an awesome 3 days of browsing through and sorting 100s of books - right from simple word pictures all the way to Shakespeare; right from simple books on grammar all the way to World Book Encyclopedia!
On Day 1, we separated 2/3rds of the books by fiction and non-fiction ones. On Day 2, we categorized them further by subject - short stories, young readers and rhymes in fiction; and science, social science, english, maths, activity, reference, magazines and vernacular.
On Day 3 (Thursday 23rd Dec 2010), we took all the short stories books and color-coded them using a “GROWBY” scheme that’s being used for the current books in the school. In that, books of 2 sentences or less per page are under G – Green; and this stretches to Y –Yellow for books that have more than 10 sentences per page.
In all this, volunteers as well as students have played a pivotal role. On all the days, during library period (each standard has library period 1 day a week), we got the students to do the categorization, transport, handling and arrangement of books en masse, while the volunteers, ahem, supervised! The students have done a stellar job and showed brilliant teamwork and dedication; while the volunteers have energetically helped and guided them every step of the way! A big thanks to everyone!
Much more to do now : We have to serial-numberize the color-coded books and cover them in transparent plastic so they stay good! Along with serial numbering, we will enter the titles in computer/laptop so that we have a database ready.
Oh, and bonus for the volunteers coming on Day 4 – Fri 24th Dec’10 : The school is celebrating Christmas Party! Also, we’ve recently acquired a Projector thanks to some generous friends, and so there’s going to be movie screenings as well – you can come help out, as well as enjoy the festivities 7.30am onwards, at Shantabai Ladkat English Medium School (SLEMS!) in