The real personal development of the individual goes hand in hand with the study of society, mankind, and Divinity.'Motivating intelligence for social change' is the motto of our school. For this purpose, the children should go to the people and see what is the real world around them. A number of activities are arranged for getting a picture of the society.
For gifted student, it is necessary that he learns to merge himself in the masses participating in activities arranged by others, i.e. in community festivals. JP has chosen 2 such community festivals where participation of the students is expected. Most of the students start enjoying it right from their first participation. In Maharashtra, there is a tradition of devotees going to Pandharpur, the holy place of pilgrimage. Devotees from all directions go walking distances of hundreds of km. Usually, a day’s march is 15 to 20 km. Ever since the school started, students of JP have been joining these crowds in their festive mood and march with them, thus imbibing a rich experience.
Another popular festival is that of Lord ‘Ganesh’. In Pune city itself, about 200 groups install idols of Lord Ganesh for a period of 10 days. This period is marked for its decorations, music, singing, lectures, concerts, and general gaiety. On the 10 days, all idols are taken in many processions and immersed in the local river. Students of JP participate in this procession as a group and perform a very dynamic, collective, rhythmic dance. JP’s boys have been participating in such a procession since the beginning of school. Such participation in local cultural events creates social awareness very rapidly. The school has earned a reputation all over the State due to disciplined yet very dynamic participation in this Ganesh festival. Participation also gives insight into various practices and traditions in the festival.
At school and during the weekly timetable, students learn about History, Geography, Constitution, and the Political setup in India. They thus become aware of natural or political/ social upheavals taking place in various regions of India. JPP encourages a healthy curiosity on the part of students about such events and arranges study tours for such purposes.
The 8th & 9th standard students go & stay in rural areas for a few days a year. They become aware of the educational and social situations of the rural boys and girls of their age. It arouses sympathy for the disadvantaged & deprived. Stay in a tent at a scenic place, a routine that makes you independent, work experience that establishes prestige of labor in the students’ minds, the eye-opening harsh realities of the rural life, singing patriotic songs around the campfire, making resolutions with an activist……that’s camping. Such experiences are worth a thousand words in a book.
In our globalized world, current affairs everywhere have a huge impact on our lives, most of the time without us even realizing it. An action in one part will almost certainly cause a reaction in another. In order to understand the relationships between events occurring everywhere in the world, you need to know about the events occurring everywhere in the world. It gives us a chance to introspect and control our actions accordingly. To inculcate this habit in children, thought-provoking and informative lectures are arranged. Students are encouraged to raise questions and initiate discussions. One period per week is reserved to make students aware of the social environment and national and international affairs. These sessions are loosely structured and open-ended. The teachers and students decide the topics to be dealt with. Reading newspapers, magazines and books, discussions, seminars and debates, inviting prominent persons for interviews are some of the techniques used during this period.
Ganesh festival celebrations by Jnana Prabodhini