The Scindia School is our new place. The school is over 100 years old and it’s a beautiful place. It’s on top of The Fort in the city of Gwalior. It’s located in the region of Madhya Pradesh.
We are surrounded by trees and plants of all sizes. I think it’s because of the rains in the monsoon season, and we are still getting some. It’s much greener and with bigger plants than I thought we’d see. Lots of bushes and plants growing everywhere.
There’s also lots of animals, and many I’ve never seen before. Lizards different than the ones we have in Chile. These are white-ish, and I think they are actually geckos, but they call them “house lizards.” Squirrels, monkeys (two kinds!), parrots…. you can see the side bar in my page here, to see the animals we’ve seen so far, with their links if you want to learn more and see some pictures while I’m working on taking pictures of my own.
The school is beautiful. The halls. The rooms are open with windows and doors to get cooler air circulating. You can get a nice view from mostly anywhere in the school.
There’s an area where they have the Paperwork, Metalwork and Woodwork classes. Another area for the Art Department where we’ve been enjoying different crafts, pottery and painting, drawing, and printing (still need to try this.) These classes are right below the Music classroom, and Lucas and I visited few days ago and saw the students play the many instruments they have. They practice daily (morning and afternoon) and we get to enjoy their music every day in the assemblies and plays and functions. The arts are always present throught the day and throughout the school. I have really enjoyed it.
My favorite parts for now, I think, is the beginning and the end of the students’ days. There’s an assembly before classes start. The principal does the announcement of activities and gives the awards to the teachers and students, if any has been awarded. As we stand up to see the principal walk in the auditorium and up the stage there’s a prayer. I don’t understand what they say. But having the 300 boys repeat it makes me be present, right there at that moment. Beginning with the sound “om….” everybody singing.
The assembly ends after few minutes with a song which I don’t understand either nor do I know the words, but sometimes I know is the National Anthem. The students play instruments and everybody signs.
At the end are the doors to the Assembly Hall.
Our days go our separate ways. Mark teaching sometimes his Engineer Hobby (club), meeting a student or having a meeting. Siena and Lucas attending hobbies of their own, or going home. But you are never alone at The Fort. There’s always students and there’s always something to do. It’s really fun.
The Science building.
At 6:15pm the students gather for “asthachal“. It’s a ceremony to end the day, to reflect on the day. I’ve attended a couple of times and will try to go more as it is a beautiful way to end the day. 100 or 200 boys, students, reflecting, listening, praying, sitting, in silence, watching the sun go down.