With the noble intent of further improving the education conditions in Sayla taluka (block consisting of 75 villages) and enhancing the devotion and dedication of the teachers towards education, Prem ni Parab which entered it’s glorious 15th year (started in 2005), organised "Nishtha Vruddhi Chintan Shibir” on 20th July in the Raj Mandir of Shree Raj Saubhag Ashram, Sayla.
It was the third event that took place since the past year and marked presence of 850 teachers, which is a big feat to gather from a Government school. The shibir was held in the presence of Param Pujya Bhaishree, Prem Ni Parab Committee members Brahmnishts Minalben and Vikrambhai and District Primary Education Officer H. H. Chaudhary. Two very distinguished speakers of the event were Professor Deepak Taraiya and Dr. Bhadrayu Vachharajya.
Introducing the event, Prem Ni Parab Project Director Mr Chandrakant Vyas emphasised upon the importance of being dedicated and committed (nishtha) to a purpose. He said the shibir was organised with the aim to bring about a shift in the thought process of the teachers.
Bhaishree's address to the teachers
"પોતાનું કામ શ્રેષ્ઠ રીતે કરવું એના જેવો બીજો ધર્મ નથી."
- પૂજ્ય ભાઈશ્રી
Warmly welcoming teachers and principals, Param Pujya Bhaishree said:
Teachers form the basis of intrinsic strength of any nation, and when teachers impart education with full devotion and dedication, their service to the cause of a strong nation increases manifold. He narrated contextual incidences which further explained the importance of values.
He explained that commitment and single-mindedness brings discipline to life and makes us value time. There are many ways to achieve success in life, but there is only one way to give meaning to life and that is through purposefulness and wholehearted commitment. Lord Krishna had also established the importance of "Karma Yog" in Bhagavad Gita. Be it worldly or spiritual endeavours, dedicated sustained efforts is the key to progress.
Bhaishree highlighted the quality of reverence as essential for the spiritual path and reverence towards True God, Enlightened Master and True Religion is the very core of spiritual progress. Doing one’s daily agna (spiritual duties) with sincerity will ensure progress on this path.
A teacher is also called 'Guru' because s/he bears the responsibility of uplifting humankind. Hence a teacher needs to be skilled and able to adapt to the changing needs of the world. Being experimental and creative are two important qualities of being a great teacher. Such qualities can be developed by inculcating high values and observing a disciplined life.
Concluding his address, Bhaishree said, “The upliftment of education in this entire area rests on your shoulders. You are the carrier of Prem Ni Parab and I experience pride in this.”
Professor Deepak Taraiya's Address
An expert in Child Psychology and a resource person of UNICEF (Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh), Professor Deepak Teraiya has 21 years of experience in the field of Training, Education and Development.
In his unique style, and sharing from his experience of being a student as well as a teacher, he said:
Teaching is ASK:
A - Attitude
S - Skill Set
K - Knowledge
Teachers should take 4 values while going to teach and they are PHUL (meaning flower in gujarati):
P - Purity
H - Honesty
U - Unselfishness
L - (Unconditional) Love.
Sharing memories from his childhood, Deepakbhai gave real examples of how the attitude of teachers have a very significant, lifelong impact on all of their students. He shared, “When I was a child, I drew a caricature of my teacher in my notebook. On finding out the teacher hit me. This incident forever killed the caricaturist within me. Another incident from my childhood that I recall was how once I was mimicking teachers and other students in class. When the teacher entered the class, rather than admonishing me, she encouraged me to hone my skills. As a result, today I am acknowledged by everyone as an exceptional orator. Such is the profound impact a teacher has on a child."
Taking the audience through his motivating and adventurous teaching journey, he said that the profession demands 'Unitive Approach' and 'Guidance Approach' in order to communicate well with the students and becoming their inspiration and go-to people during troubled times. He expressed his concerns over the fact that we have departed from our roots and thus degraded the quality of life. A teacher should love, acknowledge and encourage his students. In his closing remarks, he motivated the teachers to instil the qualities of honesty and right attitude in life and perform their professional duties selflessly.
Dr. Bhadrayu Vachharaja's Address
Armed with 36-years' teaching experience, and decorated with the "Kalam ane kaya thi ganpati" award by Morari Bapu, Dr. Bhadrayu Vachharajani, gave up his comfortable permanent job at Bank of Baroda to follow his passion - teaching.
An impressive orator and writer, Dr. Bhadrayu emphasised on the three domains of education:
He highlighted the importance for teachers to be well read, because, one who does not read, does not think, and one who does not think, cannot change his/her thought process. He stated the 3 aspects that should be kept in mind by teachers in today’s scenario:
Teachers should be upright and have good etiquette (there are some teachers in government schools that do not dress properly; some chew tobacco even in the classroom and some who put their legs on the table while teaching).
They should be knowledgeable, health-conscious and prompt in answering questions and doubts.
Teachers should have self esteem.
Testimonial of a Teacher
Post the shibir, one of the teachers of Bhaduka Primary School, Ms. Geentanjali Dave, shared her satisfying experience on Facebook.
Screenshot of the teacher's facebook post:
An extract from the teacher's sharing (English translation):
“Ever since I heard that senior educationists, Dr. Bhadrayu and Deepakbhai were going to address all of our teaching faculty, including 800 teachers, BRC’s (Block Resource Coordinators), CRC’s (Cluster Resource Coordinators –officers from the department who are assigned the tasks of providing education and other support to teachers apart from monitoring their activities), BRP’s (Block Resource Person) and TPEO’s (Taluka Primary Education Officers), I was really looking forward to learning and gaining the much needed knowledge for professional growth and development. Their speeches highlighted the importance of dedication to the teaching profession in moulding young minds, personal hygiene and inculcating humane qualities as a teacher and a member of society.
…Deepakbhai's childhood incidents moved me and made me reflect upon my own actions. I realised the powerful impact teachers have on each student. His words still echo in my heart,” concludes Ms. Geentanjali Dave
The shibir got featured in the newspaper, Divya Bhaskar dated 21-07-2019