Everyone Loves A Good Story

To be able to use one's imagination to entertain others is a great skill to master -- our parents and grandparents used bedtime stories to great effect in our childhood.

Storytelling is an art: it educates, it entertains, and it enthralls. It encourages us to be creative. It can even lull us into a good night's sleep. It helped preserve different cultures and traditions across the world before the printed word was invented.

The word 'story' can attain a slightly negative connotation with such English-language phrases as ‘cook up a story’ (invent a story or alibi), or ‘spin a yarn’ (tell a long, far- fetched story). Were you aware that ‘old wives tale’ is a widely held traditional belief that is now thought to be unscientific or incorrect, while ‘a tall tale’ is a hard to believe story?

Those who always tell a ‘cock and bull story’(an obviously untrue story) to their parents, teachers or classmates will find it difficult to convince them they are actually telling the truth and are likely be dismissed with a shake of the head and a “Don’t trust him/her, we are sure it's the ‘same old story’(a bad situation that has happened many times before)”

A story can make us warm and fuzzy inside like a success story, a heartwarming story, a bedtime story or a rags-to-riches story.

Moreover, a good story can fire up our imagination and everybody loves a good story! Therefore, being able to tell a story well can keep your audience spellbound; it is an art worth mastering.

In recent times, the practice of storytelling at home and in schools has declined due to the popularity of video games and social media networks. However, scientists and educators recommend that, this tradition should be made a part of family time and school curriculum.

Storytelling helps students in many ways:

  • Level-playing field: Every child is gifted, but in a different way. Storytelling gives an alternative to children who are unable to cope with traditional learning methods.
  • Job opportunities: The ability to express our ideas and vision clearly and imaginatively is a key to be a part of the 21st century workforce.
  • Networking: The power of oral expression can help students create effective networks -- the lifeline of modern living.

Teachers, on the other hand, can benefit from:

  • Increased reach: They can reach out to every student in the class and keep them interested for longer periods of time.
  • Less stress: By introducing an element of fun, teachers can communicate with students with less effort.
  • Renewed creativity: Educators can broaden their own horizons by effective and creative use of storytelling.

Finally, storytelling is an effective method of communication that has been in existence for thousands of years. In case you are interested, here is a link to some interesting variations of the word story/tale/yarn at http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/story)

International Students' Day - The Role of Education in Social Transformation

According to Wikipedia, International Students' Day is an international observance of student community, held annually on November 17.

The day was originally started as a commemoration of 100's of University of Prague students who lost their lives during WWII, but is now an occasion for universities the world over to celebrate multiculturalism, diversity and cooperation among their students.

It is also an occasion for the worldwide student community to celebrate their acts of social responsibility through gatherings, competitions, food fests and charity events organized on the campus on the day.

In India, we observe October 15 as the ‘World Student’s Day’ (which was declared by the United Nations in 2010) in appreciation of our former president’s contribution to education.

Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam in addition to being a scientist who played a stellar role in India's missile defence programme, and was also fond of teaching. He is remembered for his love for interaction with students at schools and universities across India and even internationally.

Dr. Kalam popularized the movement to spread awareness about the importance of education by highlighting the role of education as a tool of transformation. We will now look at the social impact of the initiative led by our former president:

  • Role of Teachers: It reinforced the traditionally held belief that teaching is the most noble of all professions and teachers need our support to effectively handle the enormous responsibility of creating the citizens of tomorrow.
  • Importance of Education: It informed people that the only way to change their lives for the better is through education as it is capable of  providing the children from the underprivileged classes with a chance to be a part of the mainstream of the society.
  • Healthcare Awareness: It highlighted the fact that providing healthcare to millions is an enormous task in India but it is possible to make people more aware about diseases and therefore spend less on medical treatment through access to education.
  • Social Harmony: It reminded us that accepting differences and celebrating similarities in the community is key to achieving social harmony and education is the best means to ensure it with active participation from students.

On the occasion of celebrations dedicated to students, let us also thank our teachers for guiding us and take a pledge to help others to gain access to quality education.

Mount Litera Zee School wishes the student community a Happy International Students’ Day.