One day, my 4-year-old, K, studying in Kindergarten in a reputed school shows her classwork notebook to me and asks very casually and innocently, “Why do I have so many red cross marks and Asmita doesn’t?”
A train of thoughts zooms past my head in a fraction of a second.
Comparison, performance, peer pressure, self-doubt, damage, conformity, nonacceptance, suppression, subtle violence, curbed expression, stifled growth, stuck, old school… NO.
What if K is carved out for something else?
What if something else is for K?
I knew deep in my heart this wasn’t it for her.
I went about reading and talking around to find if there was an option or alternative education system.
Don’t other young parents also go through this?
Don’t they get worked up as well just like I did?
Does it ring a bell? Does it resonate? Have you had questions like these at some point in time, even for brief moments?
If yes, continue to read on further.
A system that can nurture instead of molding every child the same way.
A system which understands that each child is different and works on bringing out the child’s hidden potential. A system that inculcates true learning, learning based on what the child wants to learn and not what the prescribed books tell. Where the child is free to explore the areas of her interests, as deep or even as shallow as one wants to. Where there are no pressures of conforming to the norms. Where there is true freedom. Where the child can be herself without any guilt, shame, or fear. A progressive, holistic education system.
As they say, what you are seeking is seeking you.
I somehow got my hands on this book Integral Education by Partho.
This book served as gospel to me. Exactly what I was looking for.
An excerpt from the book:
“The central purpose of such an education would not be to repeat what others have done or are doing, but to attempt something that may never have been attempted before on the planet — to create conditions for the emergence of a new way of being on earth, to break out fossilized debilitating beliefs, to enable fundamental levels of learning and unlearning. But if we are to seriously attempt fundamental levels of unlearning and new-learning, of breaking out of our old consciousness and life molds, we will first need to understand, as clearly as we can, the nature of our old consciousness, the meaning of the old patterns and the forces that have shaped our racial destiny so far, the design that holds it all together. Only by understanding our evolutionary past can we create a new future.“