“A narrow vision is divisive, a broad vision is expansive and a holistic vision is
– Swami Tejomayananda
While witnessing a scene in a public playground, we observe kids engrossed in play, some alone, some with others, some are observing the grass, some are tearing them apart, some are devising a new group game, some are testing gravity by sliding down as they are being watched keenly by their parents and guardians who only know that they want their children to be safe and happy. In this group of merrymakers, we find a group of mothers who are setting into the dusk while discussing prospects.
Sheela is a stay at home mum and her son Ajay is 5 years old with doll eyes and a mind for mischief. She also has a younger daughter, Meera who is 2.5 yrs.
Sheela: We have been looking for schools for Ajay. He is very naughty. But look there, how he is passionately pushing Meera’s swing to give her a good thrill. I admire that at this age how well he controls the swing so that neither of them gets hurt! Gauging distance, time and speed is a big feat, isn’t it? He often creates situations to resolve them himself. My husband says that I praise him too much, but I feel that his growth impulses should be recognized, Even if they are childish. I wish to find a school which will further develop his “self-inquiry” and where he will truly find his freedom to blossom.
Ahilya is a banker mum. Her 2.5 years- old daughter Sapna squats on the ground where she has discovered a beetle that has tickled her curiosity. She is on a mission to follow the beetle wherever it goes.
Sapna (in her baby voice): “Oh wow, look at this smooth and shiny beetle. But why is the sand gritty and sharp. “Putting some sand in her mouth she exclaims,”It tastes like nothing! Is this what nothing tastes like?”
Ahilya: Come on Sapna, stop it, stop it now! Don’t put sand in your mouth. See I don’t know how the school will keep her safe, she wants to taste everything. At home her Nani really takes care of her. But sometimes I also feel our culture superimposes dependence on the child. I’m always stuck in this debate about where one should draw the line between safety and over protectiveness.
Kashmira is a Doctor mum of 4 years old twins Rishita and Viksha. They are tall for their age and play catch-me-if-you-can with their tiny ponies bopping on their heads.
Kashmira: But, Ahilya all said and done our world has become so competitive. I am still studying at this age for better professional development. My children study in Little Aryans Pre K and they say that they are making our children school ready In fact they say, like a long-distance runner first needs to work on his/her stamina, similarly a life- long learner needs to build a stable fundamental practice of enquiry and reflection. But looking how carefree their day goes, I wonder what they are gathering in the school?