To become a complete individual and a better version of oneself, we go through certain situations in life that helps us develop specific skill sets and understand the importance of values that we can apply in day to day life and face the world in an inclusive and informed manner. Some basic skills that are taken for granted like confidence, social and personal mannerism, communication, way to carry oneself, judgement, decision making skills, self expression, are often learnt by a children with observation and practice. In an environment where there are not many opportunities to develop these skills, one needs to find fun and interactive methods to enable them to explore themselves and provide them the tools to be in a position to compete with others with equal footing.
We at Maîtri strive to make our community children ready to face the world with both educational and life skills. Activities for children are conducted regularly where they are provided an environment to explore and understand, leading them to a road of self expression, confidence, self awareness, analytical thinking, problem solving, working in groups, empathy and much more.
We underestimate how important it is for children to play fun games in groups to help them learn and understand empathy, working in groups, diversity and broaden their mind. It enables them to see firsthand that different people have different mindsets and hence do things differently and that if someone has a set of values that are new to you, it does not mean that they are wrong or will not be able to reach the goal.
Maitri understands this and organises sessions of fun games to develop these skills. Games like ‘Pictionary’ develops creative thinking, ‘Salaam Namaste’ improves concentration power, ‘Dog and the Bone’ helps children practice empathy and effective communication, ‘Show and Tell’ gives them a chance to speak publicly with confidence and teaches them communication tactics, ‘Group Knot’ makes them problem solve and helps them learn dealing with limited time frames, ‘Shrinking Blanket’ makes them work and solve problems together in a group. These activities provide children an outlet to express what they may not be able to put clearly in words or actions. Process is monitored regularly and feedback is taken seriously. Different activities are held to always keep the children on their feet. Continuously improvements are made to the existing games and formats are changed to fit the needs of children.
We always get positive responses in the activities and children learn vital life skills as basic as speaking clearly and having a good standing posture to complex theories of space and time, without even realising and have a fun exciting time in the process.
Written by: Shivani Singhal, Intern