Monthly Archives: August 2010

Week One at new school.

Looks like school is off to a great start for Akank. Going by the debriefing sessions every afternoon, I can certainly say that I  get good vibes.  Today I met the class teacher at the ‘year ahead’ meeting and she confirmed my judgment. Akank is pretty excited about how school is turning out to be. In Math she has completed a ‘Mini Me’ project and I saw it displayed in the classroom. They were given a piece of woolen string to measure various parts of their body and draw  to scale a mini model of themselves on to chart paper. The cut outs of the Mini Me’s were pretty revealing on how children understand scales ans proportions!. In English she had to write a  Bio Poem about herself.  The Biopoems were displayed too. It turned out to be a mind map with a photo of the student in the center and blobs to be filled out by the student that described her. Akank mentioned her skills in music, her dad, her favorite colour and book, her favorite music band and the newest love of our lives , Maxx.

Akank has no books to bring back from school. Every student in her class has been given an organizer, to note down their study plan for the day.  The only things she brought back from school was a user ID and password for the school intranet and a library card. She works on a Mac ( Day 4 end of school day – Ma, can we buy a Mac? Its awesome!) and saves her school work on to a flash drive and submits it for her teachers evaluation. So far so good.

Week Two has begun well too. At least I saw some sign of math homework , even though it was only an easy to solve Sudoku puzzle!

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Posted by on August 24, 2010 in School, updates


To school again, finally!

I thought I would never say this, but seeing Akank off to school is something I really missed. Ever since she completed her year in April , Akank has been home except for the short sessions in music, piano and Spanish lessons. The vacation was so long that Akank herself had begun to miss school. School finally reopened yesterday and it looks like it is off to a  good start. Akank had an hour long update for me when she got back.

A few observations I made about school –

a) They are organized. There was absolutely no indication that it was the first day of school. I expected a crowd of concerned parents jostling and elbowing for space near the gates. The office staff seem to be in control and not at all distressed with the fact that there were parents wanting to clarify little details.

c) The school takes student safety very seriously. There was a staff allocated to take mug shots of parents of new children that have joined school this year. She made us write out a form with our names and contact details. Before she photographed us, she made sure we held it in front of us to record it like they would in prison cells.  The school will not let parents without ID into the campus, we were told.

d) They value your time. We expected it to take at least a couple of hours to get done with formalities since we had missed the orientation day. However, we were back in the car park in less than twenty minutes.

A few observations that Akank made about school after first day-

a) Every child, even blond girls, was friendly.

b) All teachers and students had an appreciative sense of humour. ( a particular mention of the music teacher who made funny noises for them to repeat and a student who raised his hand to be excluded from a list of students who had raised their hands for a vote)

c) Even Math turned out to be activity filled and fun ( thank God for that)

d) The bathrooms were clean ( Another mercy!)

e) The cafeteria smelt funny so she was not able to finish her sandwich ( a new reason for unfinished lunch boxes)

From what she reported I understand that the teaching methodology involves a lot of audio visual aids and activity based learning. There are no books to be brought back home every day, even though Akank offered to bring back some work for the weekend.

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Posted by on August 17, 2010 in School, updates


The arrival!

Its the BIG announcement folks! Akank’s pup arrived home on the 14th August, just five days short of her 11th birthday. A perfect birthday present for a child whose single minded conviction was that, only a pup will change her life for the better…and it has and how!

The pet farm that we had registered with had warned us a month back that we may not have him before August 19th, the designated day we wanted him home. They did promise us that they would do their best to source a golden retriever, male pup under 3 months of age ( Akank worked hard for almost 5 years before she arrived at the specs). When we got the news of the arrival of the pup both Akank and I were in India celebrating an early birthday for Akank with old friends from school.  When the news arrived as a text message, Akank could not contain herself.  For someone not known to show public display of affection to anyone, let alone her mom, she jumped, squealed and hugged me so hard that my lungs were devoid of any residual air.

Then afterward began the restless wait of a week till we got back home.  Our one point agenda for the day we arrived was to drive to the farm and bring him home. The night before, Akank voiced out her fears and concerns. “Am I ready for him, ma? You think he will be happy with us?””. We had to repeatedly remind her that we were as aware as she was, it being our first experience as parents to a four legged living being. Only time will tell, we chimed in to let her know of our predicament.

Maxx has been home for three nights already. We have a special enclosure for him at one end of our family room. He is not allowed to ‘socialize’ with everyone yet since he has not completed his vaccinations. He is 15 weeks old and is already in the adolescent phase of his life. I have begun disciplining him and he responds well.

I know he is going to have a good life with us. We have broken all rules and accommodated his whim for deer meat, chicken, turkey and lamb. We feed him what the breeder recommended even though someday we hope he will shun meat and stick to being vegetarians like us. We only hope he does not influence us into changing and adapting to his ways.


Posted by on August 17, 2010 in Introduction, Pet