SHIKSHANTAR
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  • Open and inclusive spaces that reflect openness to learning.
  • Enduring respect for children as thinkers and explorers.
  • Structures and processes ‘led’ by children, experiential education, collaborative work and skilful feedback.
  • Choices with a purpose that define children as individuals far more than their abilities.
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Teacher Profiles

Vanar Years

Mudita

Mudita has been associated with Shikshantar for the last 15 years. She joined the school in its third year and the two have happily grown together. She findssatisfaction by facilitating numerous moments of discovery and joy with her group of 5 year olds. Their shared delight while stumbling on a fresh bloom or some crawling insects in the front lawn, playing with words while listening to a Dr. Seuss story, spending quiet time together listening to a bird chirping in the bamboos or while playing a self-made board game during Choice time, all make her days at school remarkable. Her passion lies in narrating stories to her group of Kindergartners and she is always looking for fresh ways of making story-time enjoyable. She has explored narrating stories using puppets, through shadow play and also through an old Japanese form of story-telling,Kamishibai.Her journey as a teacher-facilitator continues with each new day, bringing with it endless possibilities of learning, unlearning and growth.

Deepa Bhalla

Deepa Bhalla’s journey in education began in the new millennium – the year 2000.
Her association with Shikshantar began in the year 2005. She gradually saw herself evolve from being a teacher to a facilitator and her facilitation becoming child oriented (centred) rather than teacher oriented.   

Deepa is a warm, gentle person who believes in being sensitive to the emotions and feelings of all around her; be it children or fellow colleagues.  She emphasises on instilling kindness amongst children through self -reflection and introspection exercises which she consciously integrates with her group’s curricular experiences.
According to Jean Piaget, a famous philosopher’s theory, “children are encouraged to discover themselves through spontaneous interactions with the environment.” Likewise, Deepa also aims to ignite curiosity in children by providing them ample opportunities of hand on experiences in which they use all their senses to attain relevant knowledge.
Deepa also believes in the principle ‘Nothing can be taught’. She attempts to steer her conversations with children in directions that motivate them to think on their own and look for answers to their questions.
Deepa is self-motivatedand consistently seeks to do something new. 

Premsheela

Premsheela formally graduated in ‘Music’ from the prestigious Prayag Sangeet Samiti, Allahabad. But it is under the able guidance of Devi Karunamayee of Sri Aurobindo Ashram – Delhi Branch that she trained in vocal music for more than 15 years and whom she considers to be her true Guru.

Premsheela is a complete musician – she writes lyrics, composes music, plays on a variety of instruments, and sings. She has dedicated her life to initiating children into musical harmony. With her love for children and for music, her infectious enthusiasm, and her lively scintillating voice, she makes learning music fun. A collection of her children’s songs was released recently under the title ‘Sapne’ as an audio CD. Her journey with Shikshantar has been over 12 years now.

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Soma De

Soma De, BA B.ED, joined Shikshantar in the year 2006.  Being with children fascinates her and she loves their company; perhaps the reason that has kept her in the field of education for the past seventeen years in various schools across the country. Having taught children from diverse cultural backgrounds at various stages of their journey, Soma easily adapted to the philosophy of Shikshantar.

She is committed to social, academic growth and development of every child through various media; be it books or drama, sports or other curricular activities.  Her warm and caring nature creates a classroom atmosphere that is stimulating, encouraging and adaptive to children’s needs.

An avid reader of children’s  literature, Soma enjoys writing poetry. Poetry is cathartic for her; it helps her in understanding children and their world better. She strengthens her connect with children also through singing and dancing, which are integral parts of her personality, hobbies that she has been nurturing since childhood. Through her guidance, she inspires children to develop values of self confidence, mutual respect and cooperation.

She finds her journey in Shikshantar particularly enriching and satisfying as as it has helped her grow not only as a facilitator but also as an individual.

Finding Feet

Jyoti Sharma

Jyoti has been working in Shikshantar for the past six years. She has always been with young kids and helping them in their understanding of various subjects haa been her passion. She was always fascinated by her teachers and aspired to be like them. Shikshantar provides her the platform to fulfil her dream. She believes that a teacher is instrumental in a child’s overall development, is a person who helps a child in identifying and devising his/her own methods of acquiring knowledge. With each passing year Shikshantar has strengthened her belief and she has become more intuitive towards understanding the needs of children. Having worked with children of different age groups, understanding their needs has made her observations more acute. Working with children with special needs has made her caring and empathetic. Reading books, singing songs and narrating stories of different genres to children and building their imagination give her a sense of satisfaction.

Indu Matta

Indu’s involvement with Shikshantar has been a long one. During her college days, she was a member of the National Service Scheme. After college hours, working everyday with children of primary school developed her interest for teaching. Slowly and steadily, she realized the important role of a teacher in nurturing the intellectual and social development of children. Teaching and learning with students gives her an immense pleasure, knowledge, wisdom and a feeling of contentment.

She believes that education is helping children to discover and explore the world around them. She acknowledges that each child is unique and has personal learning abilities, which she takes into consideration most of the times. She believes that love, patience, trust and guidance from a teacher helps children reach their fullest potential. She uses her creativity in providing imaginative and motivating learning opportunities for children. She help her divergent learners to organize their thoughts and acquire skills and knowledge, learning meaningful methods and strategies to enhance the learning environment for children. She has a passion for engaging children in experimenting, analyzing and doing art and craft work with them.

Reena Jamwal

Completed her schooling from St. Xaviers and got enrolled in B.El.Ed in Jesus & Mary College, made a huge difference to her life. She came to understand the difference between merely wanting to be a teacher and what it actually takes to be a facilitator, One who doesn’t teach but facilitates the learning process and also learns along with children.

And Shikshantar has further given her a very deep conviction that each child is special and learns according to his/her own pace, which needs to be respected by all. Here, whether it is choice time, circle time or project time, she has learnt to value & nurture each different and special self with love, trust and respect. She enjoys the process of sharing, discovering, constructing and reconstructing her knowledge with children each moment.

Finding grounds

Shruti Sharma 

Shruti Sharma is an English teacher who gets excited about ideas- literary, artistic and motivational. She has done Bachelor of Elementary Education (B.El.Ed.) from Jesus and Mary College. She is also a Post Graduate in English from Delhi University and has done B.Ed. After teaching Primary, Middle and Secondary School children for twelve years in conventional schools, she moved to Shikshantar in May 2013.  Shruti strongly believes that the spark to learn is inherent in all humans. A facilitator’s skill lies in helping the learner discover it and kindle it. Her love for young learners and her belief in the need to make education meaningful connects her to Shikshantar.
 
She enjoys being with students and likes to do new things. A compulsive reader, Shruti can read through storm, rain, hail and sunshine, eating, drinking, standing and sitting. This helps her enrich her literature class with stories, anecdotes and extensive extra reading.
 
She is a sensitive soul, the silent rebel with new causes. Though essentially a dreamer- an idealist, she is pragmatic at the same time; always striving hard to strike a balance between the two.
 

Sujasha Dasgupta 

Sujasha Dasgupta is a senior art facilitator in Shikshantar. She has been associated with Shikshantar for the last seven years.
 
An illustrator and graphic designer by profession, her heart turned towards teaching after discovering how progressive education nurtures the learner and helps connect with the inner being, resulting in wholistic development and an integrated personality.
 
Working with children has proven to be an immensely gratifying experience as each day she discovers their pure spontaneity and vivid imagination. Having struggled to unlearn her own structured thinking, she realises how important it is to encourage the spontaneous and original expression of each child.
 
She is passionate about inculcating in her students a deep understanding of the intrinsic connection of nature with all forms of creative expression. She believes that awareness, sensitivity, observation and analysis are essential for creativity.