SAIIER 2013:Auroville Pre-Crèche
At the Auroville Pre-Crèche we aim to offer small children from Auroville a safe and harmonious atmosphere for being, exploring and learning. The parents can find in the pre-crèche a supportive place to meet and share the experience about raising children.
The pre-crèche is now well established with its specific atmosphere. It is on a never ending process of evolution as different teachers and parents contribute, sharing their various points of views on raising children. Our growth since the beginning has been very much according to the needs and the attitudes expressed by the community and the Mother for child care in Auroville.
Pre-crèche offers activities for 2 groups: Toddler‘s Group and Baby‘s Group.
This year we had around 30 children between one-and-a-half and two-and-a-half years old. This is the group of children who come every day and stay without their parents. With the increase in the strength of students (8 children more) it was a challenging times for the teachers as we were left with the same number of staff from last year. Luckily we had 2 volunteers who had helped us a lot under the guidance of Marie Angele. Each teacher was given the responsibility of organizing activities for the whole week which made each teacher have more responsibility in teaching and learning.
As usual the first few months we took great care of the children. Helped them gently to settle, feel safe and to be loved. Due to the tender age and as this is their first days of school where they are being separated from their parents we had to give the confidence that they are being in good care. Most of the children settled in nicely only few took months to settle in but slowly but the results were simply amazing towards the end of the semester as the children didn't want to be separated from their friends and their bonding with the teachers. Most of the kids were flowering joyfully and making a big progress.
This year we had two new teachers who had experience in music and dance which the kids loved doing very much. And at the same time we explored more physical activities and spent more time with the nature, walking in the Auroville forests, etc. Every other day we walked around in the field, enjoying the opportunity to listen to the silence and the peacocks singing in the background. Occasionally we had the visit of animals such as Mongoose visiting us and greeting the children.
This year, we had an average of 22 children from 8 months old to one-and-a-half years with their parents, of many different nationalities. This group gathered twice a week. The baby‘s group was a very good supportive place where babies shared space and time and here we put lot of importance on the interaction not only with children, but with their parents. The babies got involved in various activities of daily life, including collective sharing, cleanliness, eating together, singing, etc.
- We are very excited to have completed our new building which was inaugurated by Dr. Karan Singh, Chairman of the Auroville Foundation.
- The teachers went through a seminar with Anna regards to medical first aid.
- We had many workshop sessions with Maya, a Montessori teacher, on how to improve our structure and help us with the setup of our new building for the future.
The new set-up is incomplete and with only the building in place we are forced to face new challenges of building new playgrounds, play structures, swimming pools, fencing, etc. The funding is a huge concern. With no further grants from SAIIER for the time being we made appeals to the community with no immediate success. It is also getting more and more difficult to cover all the school expenses with the monthly budget provided to us at the moment.
Goals and achievements
Our main achievement during this year was our new building. We spent lot of our time with the architect and the contractor on the detailed work of the new building. We are definitely happy with the new building in place but only now we realized that we have more work on our hands. With more responsibility and more growth we are sure to accomplish this in the coming years.