It is erroneous to believe that learning is limited to the page count of textbooks. Learning, in effect, happens through a crossover of reality with our lives. The sounds we hear, the images we see, the texture of gravel beneath our feet – you don’t get such knowledge through words written in pages. But it is precisely this knowledge, which makes us. It defines our roots, the way we negotiate with a place, a sense, or an experience.
I am reminded of being captivated by the dialogues of the block-bluster movie Sholay before I actually watched it. I imagined it before I actually saw Sholay. Learning, therefore, is experiential and immersive. Knowledge is, the articulation and analysis of such experiences.
These insights lead to our core innovation of a Sound Box with Sampark Didi creating magic in 76,000 schools today by igniting imagination in 7 million young minds.
Sampark Foundation was founded keeping in mind this essence of learning. In recognizing that a child is, after everything, a child. Children not getting quality education, or skipping school, or dropping out after a few months or years- is the effect of a system that confines them, not the cause. The cause, rather, is that children in India still work in fields, work at construction sites, and they come from backgrounds that are economically fragile and demanding. How can we expect them to have any interest in attending boring unimaginative schools other than for mid-day meals?
Our vision is clear- we want to bring about a transformation in the way primary education is perceived in India. We believe we can make going to school an exciting, immersive experience- a journey of imagination and possibilities. And this is precisely what we tried to do in the last few years by working with 76,000 primary schools in the states of Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana.
In the next few years, I am sure you will be witness to this transformation- one of the world’s largest- driven by Innovation, Imagination and Interaction; without which any kind of education cannot sustain.
"Sampark Smart Shala is a very innovative intervention that is bringing excitement back into the classroom and significantly improve learning outcomes" - Dr. Raman Singh, Former Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh.
7 million smiles in 76,000 schools sounded intimidating until we trusted each other that we could do it and we did it!
A child is more excited about learning through visual tools. This enables self-paced learning in a multi-layered classroom.
For many children in India, smiling is just a dream. Whenever we walk, we envision smiles in our head and we walk even faster!
Not everyone can be a Spark. You need to have the guts to work in remote villages and a passion to make this world a better place.
Playtime gives children a chance to practice what they learning. Glimpse from a Sampark Smart Shala in Chhattisgarh
Sampark Didi sets the stage for the class in the first 15 minutes for the teacher to teach the rest of the lesson using TLMs.
Sampark Smart Shala innovatively uses a sound box, voice mascot Sampark Didi, TLMs, stories, games and teacher training.
Teachers are at the center of change, so that they own and drive the change.
With frugal innovation-led large scale social change as the central idea, Sampark brings smiles at the cost of just $1 per child/pa.