We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings

by Sadhguru Schools
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
We Nurture Wonderful Human Beings
School team delivering home learning packs
School team delivering home learning packs

Schools may be closed here in Uganda due to the Corona virus pandemic, but that has not prevented our children and teachers from learning and making a positive impact within the local community. Most of our families don’t have access to smart phones and therefore online learning isn’t accessible. In order to keep our children connected to their learning, Sadhguru school designed home learning projects to deliver to the children with weekly visits by teachers. In teachers’ own words: ‘in addition to other skills, the children have kept up with their literacy and maths skills’.

Below are a few snippets from our children enjoying learning within the comfort of their homes during this second lockdown. We would like to appreciate the team that has made this possible for our children.

Art: Toonda Community Centre and Sculpture Project(s)

A selection of our children have been getting involved with a local sculpture project at Toonda Community Centre.  Local artist, Albert led the children in creating a permanent sculpture of a dancing lady at the centre, before German volunteer Leonie helped the children to add a splash of colour to the impressive artwork.

Meanwhile year 4 and 5 have been learning about human anatomy and armatures, creating smaller scale sculptures from wire and plaster of Paris bandage, during home workshops led by teacher Lily. The children hope to exhibit their sculptures at the community centre and lead their own workshops to teach local children how to make sculptures of their own. We can’t wait to see their final sculptures revealed!

Keeping up with sports

Our inhouse coach has taken a step ahead to ensure that the children keep up with their sporty skills in tag rugby and soccer. Ongoing sports trainings are happening at the community football pitch on Ndali estate and the training includes both Kasenda Sub county community children and our own children that live in this area. These children are keeping up with developing and enhancing their soccer and tag rugby sports skills during the current lock down as schools remain closed. Coach Denis in his own words: ‘’ it is exciting to see the fun, excitement, passion and big smiles on these kids faces’.

What’s hiding in the garden?

This period has created an opportunity for Early years to check for what’s hiding in their gardens with the support / guide of their visiting teachers, parents and older siblings in a more structured way. This activity is helping the children to perfect their reading and descriptive writing skills. As a result, some children have been able to observe different plants and animals and describe / write facts about them, identify their favourite plants and describe the different parts of a plant, their uses and what these plants need for proper growth. The children are happily working together and sharing knowledge with their siblings, peers and parents.

Attempting maths creatively

Both boys and girls have made great effort with their maths during this period. Various projects like cooking, have brought maths to life in the homes of our children in a rather interesting, creative and fun way. i.e. the children have been making good use of sticks picked from the nearby bush for their mathematics tasks, some were excited about writing instructions and demonstrating how to prepare their favourite food.

The children are also sharing their personal interests and challenging situations that happen in their daily lives with the teachers during weekly visits. This provides an opportunity for us to teach and guide outside the curriculum, all the while shaping children’s minds in a way that's relevant to their individual and communal living.

The lady is here
The lady is here
Back view
Back view
Mini sculptures created by our children
Mini sculptures created by our children
Lily giving some guidance to the children
Lily giving some guidance to the children
Boys at the sculpture worskshop
Boys at the sculpture worskshop
Soccer in action
Soccer in action
Coach giving guidance
Coach giving guidance
Boys enjoy tag rugby
Boys enjoy tag rugby
Boys at Tag Rugby
Boys at Tag Rugby
Peer learning at work
Peer learning at work
Older sibling working with the little one
Older sibling working with the little one
Observing SOPs
Observing SOPs
Sanitizer always at hand
Sanitizer always at hand
Early years at writing and reading
Early years at writing and reading
Mini Sculpture still in the making
Mini Sculpture still in the making
A very big thank to Lily for making this happen
A very big thank to Lily for making this happen
came rain or shine, our team delivers packs
came rain or shine, our team delivers packs
Flowers to the team
Flowers to the team
See what we found in the garden
See what we found in the garden
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Hand washing using Tippy taps
Hand washing using Tippy taps

What such an exciting momemt to see everyone back to school after a full year of staying at home. All the children look beautifully grown can visibly see parental love was in action during the lockdown. We are following all the SOPs to ensure that everyone keeps safe and that learning happens in the best way possible. As you can see from the picturess, one of the child from early years is acting as a policeman maintaining the COVID-SOPs guidelines in the market. The child is also taking temperature of the people coming to the market.

Drumming and more

We had a wonderful one full week of drumming at the begining of term one. We have attached few pictures and a link to a short raw video with the Rockies Troupe Uganda crew at their best  - training our children. It was such a fun moment for everyone.

What such a joy that amidst all this COVID situation, Lily and Maureen joined the Sadhguru School team; with Lily overlooking the academics and Maureen taking care of montenssori learning with the early years.

Early Years back in action

Speaking about early years, the little ones were explorinig such an interesting topic “Me, My Friends and Family”. They had an opportunity to role play in different places with multiple scenarios. They each visited a school, a market, a hospital, a home among others with friends and family. The children were individually involved in  setting up of a market, others acted as sellers in the market and others as buyers, teachers and pupils.

Buddhist Thangka Painting from Tibet

In Art class this term, children from Years 2-5 were excited to learn that their Yoga teacher possesses a talent for Thangka Art: Yogesh has been studying under the tutorage of a Master painter and shared his impressive works with each class explaining how the intense focus required by the painters is in itself considered a form of meditation. The children learned about some of the symbolism within the paintings, the stories behind the artworks and the grid method employed by the artists to ensure that the characters featured can be passed down from generation to generation without losing integrity. They were amazed by the detail achieved by Thangka artists and enjoyed creating individual elements of Thangka paintings themselves, before combining these together to create a colourful, collaborative artwork!

Science experiments with Year 5 children

Through inquiry based learning, Yr 5 class carried out various physics and chemistry experiments. The children were able to identify variables in each experiment, make informed predictions and note down their observations. They also learnt about P.H levels and determined the P.H levels of the solution in their experiments. We cannot wait to see them in action at the next level.

In science, they did a simple experiment about flying sycamore seed helicopters as one of the experiments. The major aim was for them to learn how to write up a scientific investigation focusing on: planning an experimentt, making a prediction with reference to what they already know, carrying out an experiment and recording accurate results as well as drawing a conclusion from results and discuss the degree of trust. 

We all explored that Sycamore seeds are designed to catch the wind as they fall and 'fly' far away from the tree in order to grow a new tree. the air pushes upwards towards against the 'wings' of the seed (and the arms of the helicopter) pushes them in opposite directions, making the seed (helicopter) spin. Children found out that the size of the paper helicopter influences how far it can fly and how much time it takes. Small helicopters flew for a short period of time whilst big helicopters flew higher for a longer period. Flying period was recorded in seconds.

Talking about SOPs, we are keeping our masks on
Talking about SOPs, we are keeping our masks on
Montessori market: Thermometer gun,hand sanitizer
Montessori market: Thermometer gun,hand sanitizer
Reception and Yr1 Market day
Reception and Yr1 Market day
Drumming lesson
Drumming lesson
Dancing lesson
Dancing lesson
Talking about SOPs, we are keeping our masks on
Talking about SOPs, we are keeping our masks on
More dancing
More dancing
Look at that detail
Look at that detail

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The Unschooled Magazine launching mid December
The Unschooled Magazine launching mid December

The Unschooled

While schools have been closed, we've been looking for alternative ways to support the school into the future. The Unschooled online magazine began as a seed of an idea, dreamt up by one of our resident yoga teachers with the goal of funding the education of our children whilst sharing our love of learning and discovery of our world, with the world.

If you haven’t guessed already, the subscription-based magazine is named after our founder, the ‘Unschooled’ Sadhguru, who as a young boy would find in every puddle and ditch, a laboratory, and in every tree and bush of the jungle, a library. 

Living off-the-grid naturally invokes a process of hands-on learning of ‘basics’, taken for granted in cities and developed countries; at the same time we're surrounded by a riot of birds, insects, reptiles, mammals, forests and landscapes which all clamour to be drunk in. The Unschooled aims to lead you into this magical yet practical interior, while placing it in our local context of culture, geography, folklore and beyond. We hope that children around the world will find it an adventurous learning resource. The Unschooled launches in mid December through www.theunschooled.org (currently under construction).

 

Home Workbook Learning

How do you keep learning going in a rural area when schools are closed, and parents do not have the financial ability to access the internet for their children, and still maintain social distancing protocol? Middle and upper income families have been able to continue their children's education though meet platforms and chat applications like Whatsapp. For families around Sadhguru School, even a phone call can be a challenge due to lack of phone charging facilities, and the natural priority given to planting and harvesting can further reduce the chances of catching a family 'in reception'. 

We started by broadcasting a range of carefully chosen stories morning and afternoon on local radio, but soon realised this was not having enough reach. So we created the home workbook learning programme, while still being able to follow the mandated safety operating procedures. Teachers have been designing multiple booklets covering maths, literacy, geography/science and art which we have been delivering to each home. Through all weathers we have kept up regularly visiting the children to help them with these carefully designed workbooks, and to continue the Montessori learning 'in the field' of reception and year 1.

We are the only rural school in Uganda to have offered such support under the more challenging conditions presented by no internet.The images below are a small testimony to the past few months. 

 

What Words Can't Capture

It is with tremendous gratitude we would like to thank you all for maintaining your support for the school during this extremely difficult period for everyone; we have been deeply touched that during this time not a single recurring monthly donation has been curtailed, much to our surprise and joy. While fundraising has almost come to a standstill, these have been our lifeline. Wishing you all the necessary ease and flexibility to sail through whatever challenges the coming, still uncertain, months may bring.

We made in-the-field Montessori learning kits
We made in-the-field Montessori learning kits
Beginning of class: tidily rolling our our mat
Beginning of class: tidily rolling our our mat
Did you know - children have a mathematical mind?
Did you know - children have a mathematical mind?
number recognition activity: we can do it alone!
number recognition activity: we can do it alone!
Fully involved
Fully involved
Children can concentrate & find joy in working
Children can concentrate & find joy in working
Completing our sums
Completing our sums
Working on handwriting
Working on handwriting
Working in collaboration to complete additions
Working in collaboration to complete additions
Tidying up at lesson end is part of the process
Tidying up at lesson end is part of the process
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During Assembly, Josephine sharing about AI
During Assembly, Josephine sharing about AI

Artificial Intelligence comes to Sadhguru School

In this blog, we bring to you some free-flowing prose in the form of a sharing from Josephine, whose family roots are in Western Uganda. Baring in mind we are amid rolling hills and farmland with sparse electricity, she inspired our children with her lesser-known career during school assembly - Artificial Intelligence.

Meanwhile, scroll to the bottom for two elevating video links of performances from our two-weeks early closing assembly in March - the result of the sudden closure of schools due to the COVID-19 Pandemic: (1) Anandhi, a music therapist and former teacher of many years at Isha Home School leading Bob Marley's Don't Worry About a Thing, and (2) Amooti with a spoken word performance of his A Poem The Dark Child composed by him especially for Sadhguru School children.

 

'Travelling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.' (Ibn Battuta) 

Often I seek a ‘state’ of calm. That bursting-out-of-your-chest feeling of wonder, awe and gratitude. An act of stepping out of my world literally and figuratively, simultaneously embracing that sense of oneness and ‘disconnecting’. 

The trip begins

I had decided over the International women’s day weekend that I needed inspiration, a change in scenery. Travel has always pushed me to see the forest for the trees. There is something magical about hitting the road and experiencing. A friend’s work trip to Fort Portal provided a perfect opportunity. The fresh upcountry air cleared my mind and energized my spirit. Little did i know at the time that our odyssey was just begining.

We arrived in Fort Portal at 11:30am  and went about doing my colleague's work. Having a similar professional background meant that my presence was relevant. It felt refreshing to hear/speak familiar terms and contribute from an outsider’s point of view.  

Two hours later, I am sitting with my other hilarious friend, as she narrates her weekend escapade to Queen Elisabeth national park. I met her in the corridors of knowledge at the University of Cambridge. A million laughs later, we are still going strong! She has been telling me about Sadhguru school where she has been working from early this year. Like many Ugandans, before her employment, I was unaware of this oasis of peace, enlightenment and sanity, a little bit off the beaten path.

Discovering Sadhguru School

Sadhguru School is built on Ndali Estate, 24 kilometres from Fort Portal town. It is a stone’s throw away from Ndali Lodge that is also on the same estate. The estate’s valley location affords a picturesque view of the surrounding mountain slopes and crater lakes. Mildly tamed flora obscures the school, serving as a subtle embellishment for a sight for the sore eyes, that is, the school grounds. As our driver and I marvelled at the view, my other colleague quickly wanted to introduce me to the school administration before her 3pm meeting.

True to her character, she made levity the exercise of meeting the school administrators. And within minutes we were exchanging jokes at my friend’s expense. The good-natured banter concluded with an invitation to speak to the children about Artificial Intelligence, an area of my work. 

What better way to be inspired than to inspire future leaders

Maktub – my first thought! To look into faces that represent a very young version of yourself and explain the concept of designing and using algorithms to imbue machines with the human capacity for contemplation, judgement, and intention. 

Choosing to use ‘training a dog’ as an analogy for  artificial intelligence, I was happy when a pupil asked, ‘dogs understand, what happens if the machine does not do as commanded?’ The young lad through imagination and uninhibited curiosity had grasped the concept well enough to ask a very crucial question in the Artificial Intelligence/ machine learning debate. At that moment I was reminded of my childhood curiosity for life and the power of imagination. Also, two of Sadhguru’s quotes about education came to mind. The first one is,  “Education is about making a child grow with an uncluttered intelligence”. The second is,  “Education can never be a profession – it must be a passion.”

My interaction with the children and staff of Sadhguru School spoke to those two quotes. Speaking to one of the third-generation owners of Ndali estate and overseer of the school, you get to understand that passion. She will be the first to tell you that she is no expert in education. And yet she has put together a passionate team to provide holistic education in a rural setting - ensuring that each pupil’s spiritual, intellectual and physical development needs are met. Listening to one of the Directors speak of her research for the school’s current and future strategy; to the Art teacher (a professional photographer), and to the school's IT specialist pointing out pupils that want to build computers, I got that floating-above feeling of seeing one’s life as part of a wider tapestry.

I was in awe of my surroundings; grateful for the hospitality and the opportunity to be inspired; and in the wonder of my purpose in the Sadhguru School odyssey.

A clown performs during another assembly
A clown performs during another assembly

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Yr4 learning to research via the internet
Yr4 learning to research via the internet

Learning using the Montessori Approach

With the support of a few individuals, we have introduced the Montessori method this year to Reception and Year1, alongside our ongoing activity-based role-play learning. The images below show the meticulousness and intensity with which our 4-5 year olds are continuing their self-directed learning using dedicated Montessori learning materials. Montessori exercises the children's capacity to choose, through them freely selecting their work area in a disciplined, calm but absorbing atmosphere, while also enhancing their social skills. We look forward to a life-long love for learning being ignited early for these little ones.

More Martial Arts in Action

We had an opportunity to host Maciek for two weeks at school - a highly competitive and knowledgeable Brazilian Jiu Jitsu practitioner from Poland. Maciek funded his way to school with no previous knowledge of Uganda or Africa at all. Inspired purely after hearing about our project, and with a strong desire to spread knowledge of martial arts throughout the world. Through his intense style of teaching, the team strengthened their fundamental understanding of the game and learned new details and training methodologies, surely bringing our talented athletes closer to future championship possibilities.

Our Growing Team

Nine people joined our teaching team from all walks of life in January. Leaving the city, home luxuries and family behind to join us here in the countryside does not come with a lot of ease. We celebrate the dedication of  Max, Lydia, Frank, Isaac, Sophie, Daniel, Julia, Samantha and Denis in some of the images below.

Yr3 during a class activity
Yr3 during a class activity
A group from Yr4 using the internet for research
A group from Yr4 using the internet for research
Yr1: working together with a Montessori pyramid
Yr1: working together with a Montessori pyramid
Reading lesson
Reading lesson
fully focused learning using Montessori materials
fully focused learning using Montessori materials
Montessori tactile animal learning board
Montessori tactile animal learning board
Maciek demonstrates jiu jitsu move
Maciek demonstrates jiu jitsu move
Jiu Jitsu in action
Jiu Jitsu in action
The young Jiu Jitsu team in the making
The young Jiu Jitsu team in the making
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Organization Information

Sadhguru Schools

Location: Fort Portal, Kabarole - Uganda
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @https://youtu.be/xxUcvaJaPto
Project Leader:
Bliss Grace
Fort Portal, Kabarole Uganda
$90,307 raised of $200,000 goal
 
735 donations
$109,693 to go
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