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Report by Chitra


Today was the inaugural day of the 10 day workshop on Puppetry and story telling. The workshop is offered by Ranjan De the puppet man. It was organized by Divyam Academy of Values, and Mrs. Hema Ramesh is the co-ordinator.

Here is a brief description of what we did today:
9.30 am
Runjan De gave a very casual and simple introduction about himself. The first point he made it clear to us was, dont call me Sir, but Ranjan De. As I want to break off the years of wrong conditioning, let's start with this. He condemned the British way of thinking and behaving. Ranjan parents belong to Bengal. But he was born in Chennai and loves to identify himself as a Madrasi. He loves to move around the city in his bicycle!!! Especially in the summer he loves to cycle and naturally air condition his body! He expressed that he had attended about nine schools in his schooling days. He told that he had the wonderful opportunity of being among some amazing teachers‚Äöwho had inspired him into this line of education. He has great love for Indian way of doing things and wishes to bring back the Indian spirit.
We had a formal inauguration and introduced ourselves.
Ranjan De shared the purpose of the workshops he conducts. He wishes to change the Nano root of education, by starting with an empty page. So one of the things he wishes to accomplish through the ten day workshop is to make teachers, who attend the workshop, to shed off all inhibitions and add some humor to their life and profession. He does not believe in offering any templates that could be copied by others. But he wishes to start from the scratch and bring out the creativity that is present in every individual and put into best use.
He condemned by saying that we Indians always have the habit of giving lots of excuses. He wants to eradicate the of cant do and change it to can do attitude.
He sketched the events of the day as follows:
The morning session will concentrate on best usage of words. Teachers will learn how to build story, how to tell a story, how to write story, how to write a script etc.
The afternoon session will concentrate on simple exercises for the hands and voices and thus making the body and mind more flexible. As these are the biggest assets of a puppeteer, they need to be strengthened.