February 27, 2010

Plans for kids this summer

Children, lend me your eyes and your ideas too.

Because I am in the planning mode ahead of your summer holidays and have been wondering how we can link up with you this May-June.

A few ideas began to set off last Sunday when I took a group on a Walk inside the Fort.

In that group of 32 were three children, all residents of the K K Nagar-Virugambakkam neighbourhood.

One, a boy with a notebook tightly held seemed to know Indian history well and filled in with recaps as we hopped from Clive’s House to the western ramparts and to the King’s Barracks, now crumbling with the Army’s stores.

When we wound up outside the Fort Museum that morning, the threesome said they thoroughly enjoyed the walk.

How did you come?” I asked anxiously as the group dispersed.

“Dad brought us . . he is in the parking lot.”

“And don’t you want to take him to the museum?”

‘No, he doesn’t like this but he will wait for us”.

Here was a Dad who may not have had a special interest in cutlery, Cornwallis and cannon balls but let the kids enjoy what they wished to.

I’d like to know if we could organize a few special Heritage Walks only for senior children this summer?

The Fort must be one. What about other places that you may want to explore?

Mount Road or My Ladye’s Gardens or the Guindy National Park?

Your ideas will help us plan just for you.

I am also planning our annual Journalism and Writing Camp. Perhaps this year we will hold it for 10/12 days in late April so you can enjoy the whole of May on a holiday.

We have two classroom sessions every day and we also invite young journalists to talk to the participants. We ask the kids to contribute to a blog and if the reports are good, we use them in our weeklies.

What else can we provide young writers-to-be?

Maybe one trip that takes you to a news hotspot?

Or a trip to the High Court or a printing press?

Give us your ideas to make this Camp great for those who sign up.

Also on my mind is an overnight camp in a fishing village and lakeside space where you spend time in the countryside and also learn alongside kids of the villages - how people fish, how to understand sea life, how a cattamaran works. . you get to climb up a crumbling fort and watch the stars at night.

I look forward to your mails at my blog.

For Walks go to www.madraswalks.com

For the blog on our annual Journalism Camps, go to - www.mtjclass.blogspot.com

For the seaside camp, put your message in a bottle!


Asha said...

Since you are already into mylapore festival i feel you could conduct a workship on all native indian games like pallanguzhi, aadupuliattam, kalattam, dayakattai etc., since it is peak summer in chennai these workshops can be conducted indoors. A workshop on our own culture and heritage since modern day children absolutely are clueless about all these.

Your idea of taking them to fishing village is also great along with that they could be taken to some heritage villages like dakshin chitra and taught about pottery and other native crafts.

Please let me know the dates since i will be in chennai around april 16th. i would like to enroll my 13 and 11 year olds.

Vincent D' Souza said...

We are not into the business of holding Summer Camps.

It is for people with diverse talents to think of new ideas!

But we do run a Journalism Camp for senior school students. Info at - www.mtjclass.blogspot.com.
Info on the 2010 Camp will be posted in a few days.