Isai Ambalam School
Approach, Methods and Curricula
Initially Isai Ambalam School was catering to the learning needs of young adults in the age group 8 to 15 years, who were dropouts from other learning establishments and came from the villages in the Auroville area. In course of time the school has evolved to comprise pre-school, primary and middle sections. For the last 10 years the school has been successfully specializing in conducting experiments in education by adopting innovative, effective and comprehensive educational methods that make learning easier, faster, more joyous and holistic. In all these methods the three cardinal principles of education enunciated by Sri Aurobindo are very well incorporated, and all are based on joy, freedom, self-learning and ownership of learning. All of them create the most appropriate learning environment for the students, and all have further scope for improvisation and creativity.
A separate learning programme for each student is designed. Each programme contains activities for the student to acquire development in the four aspects of: essential knowledge appropriate to one's level; special aptitude, talent and inclination; psychological life skills; What further one wants to do.
Isai Ambalam is gradually creating conducive conditions in its learning/teaching environment whereby its students and teachers can become aware of the New Consciousness or Spiritual Consciousness or Grace acting all over Auroville, and consciously access or invoke it for attaining their objectives in their school life.
Essential knowledge content at the pre-school level includes 8 kinds of basic development. Creative and play activities for all the 8 kinds of basic development are daily given to the preschool children. These activities are woven around weekly or fortnightly themes like animal and bird habitats, festivals, living in different countries and similar ones.
At the primary level, the school aims for the achievement of all the skills needed by the students for their self-directed learning. For this it is using the Rishi Valley Method or Activities-Based Learning Cards system which consists of a number of study cards containing learning activities to learn Tamil, English, mathematics and environmental science.
At the middle level, Thematic Project Works method, Savalae Samaali method based on Problem-Solving Approach, Bilingual Audio with Language Games method, Basic Sentence Structures method and Spiritual Methods are used for implementing the learning programme. A learning schedule is worked out for the contents that can be learnt by the students themselves with appropriate reinforcing activities and another for the contents that are to be learnt from the teacher. Every month a minimum of one Thematic Project Work or one Savalae Samaali challenge, and one Bilingual Audio story along with appropriate Language Games are designed and used to enhance and enliven the students’ learning.
Altogether there are 115 students and 12 teachers in the school, which makes provisions for the students to receive education up to 10th standard level. All the students and teachers learn English. The school also serves as a training centre for teachers in its innovative educational methods.
- Phone: 0413-262-2793, 948-622-2047 (Subash, coordinator)
- E-mail: isaiambalamschool (at) auroville.org.in