Mr Watwani has sent this.
ONE OF THE BEST STORIES I HAVE EVER HEARD!
Mr Watwani has sent this.
ONE OF THE BEST STORIES I HAVE EVER HEARD!
Bangalore: She can’t see but is showing the way. Sumaiya Khan, 15, topped the exams at St Michael’s High School (RT Nagar) and promises to continue her sterling performance in college next year.
Sumaiya was adjudged the best student after securing 94% in her preparatory exams.
The gutsy lass, who has coped with darkness since birth, is looking to achieve distinction in the SSLC exams. “I’m studying eight hours a day and hope to get more than the preparatory exam marks,” she said.
“She is a brilliant girl. What amazes me is her focus and determination to challenge and beat the best. I’m confident she will do our school proud this year,” said school principal Naushad Nazir of head girl Sumaiya.
Her mother Nikath, a nursery teacher at the same school, said Sumaiya was a lot easier to teach, simply because she was always willing to learn and compete with normal children.
“She chose to study in a normal school and from the day she started, she has managed to top the class. She has won many debates and singing competitions. She loves challenges and that helps her scale new heights,” said Nikath.
After winning the Best Visually Challenged Student, a state award conferred by the National Federation of the Blind, a couple of years ago, Sumaiya was the lone child who made it to the final list of Horlicks Wiz Kids International School competition.
“I was selected from among 6,000 students and the onus was on me to make Bangalore proud. I gave it my best shot and all my teachers and friends were delighted and appreciated my effort,” said Sumaiyya. She made it to the final 12 round of the talent and quiz test.
Sumaiya was stood first in the International Chinthana Science exam and did well in the Winnova Genius Talent Search. Her favourite subject is social studies and she aims to give the civil services exam a shot. Knowing her steely resolve, her parents Abdullah Khan and Nikath are confident she will do well there too.
Mumbai: “He was always a quiet boy. He was always the first one to rush and help people,’’ said 55-year-old Pandurang Redkar about his 20-year-old son Mohan who died while saving a couple from drowning at Bandra bandstand four months ago.
He seemed oblivious of the praises that eminent personalities heaped on him at a crowded hall in Khar (W) on Saturday evening. Redkar wept as commissioner of police Hasan Gafoor handed him an envelope containing a cheque of Rs 4 lakh, an award for his son’s bravery. The function ended with around 100 people paying a silent tribute to Mohan.
To acknowledge the display of courage and selfless service of this young mechanic, the members of the Mohalla Committee Movement Trust, with the help of the Bandra police, collected the reward money from people. Some of the police staff also contributed to this fund.
“The police are looked down upon as being ‘toughies’. But we are human beings. Whenever I think of this youngster, I get shivers down my spine,’’ said additional commissioner of police Archana Tyagi. “The Bandra police themselves initiated the collection. This shows that we too have a soft side,’’ said Tyagi.
Originally from Malavan village in Sindhudurg district, Mohan was working as a trainee mechanic with Mahindra & Mahindra in Kandivli for the past two years. He was the primary breadwinner of his family.
Both his parents have heart ailments while his sister and elder brother are engineering students in Goa. Due to financial constraints in the family, Redkar left studies after Std X to train as a diesel mechanic.
His relatives said his mother’s treatment was possible only because of his earnings. On April 11, Mohan visited Bhabha Hospital to inquire if he could get his mother admitted for heart valve medical treatment.
After making the inquiries, he went to take a stroll at Bandstand. “Suddenly, he noticed a young couple huddled in chest deep water, trying hard to hold on to the rocks. Without hesitation, he removed his clothes, gave his cellphone to an onlooker and flung himself into the cold water,’’ said Prakash George, senior police inspector, Bandra police station.
“He was swept away from the shore after dragging them to safety,’’ he added. Ironically, at the end of the day, Mohan’s body was brought to the same Bhabha Hospital from where he had started his day. What would Redkar’s father do with the money?
REMEMBERING THE GOOD SAMARITAN: Mohan’s father, Pandurang Redkar, was handed over a cheque of Rs 4 lakh by Mumbai police commissioner Hasan Gafoor on Saturday
Princeton, the top ranking university in the US, has offered him a scholarship of $52,990 a year. His other scholarships have even more jaw-dropping amounts: Yale $53,764, Caltech $48,490, MIT $51,540, Williams College (1st among undergraduate liberal arts colleges) $50,390 and Amherst College $51,832.
“Rik has also won the Angier B Duke Memorial Merit Scholarship from Duke University, which is awarded to only two students worldwide. It includes a summer semester at Oxford and adds up to over $220,000,” said his proud father Jayanta.
The 18-year-old, who loves mathematics and physics as much as he does writing and music, wants to be an academic. After passing his higher secondary exams with an impressive score of 449, he opted not to take the IIT-JEE and WBJEE. Instead, he wants to focus on research with a “liberal ”.
“He has figured out that he can best follow his dreams in the US, because no institution in India would cater to his wide-ranging interests in science as well as the humanities,” Jayanta said. “USEFI tells us his achievement is unprecedented.”
Rik scored 2380 out of 2400 in the SAT Reasoning Test and 118/120 in TOEFL. “If a student tops SAT, he may receive offers from several top US varsities. Rik’s case is unique because he has received full scholarships from all top-notch US universities,” said Sunrit Mullick, regional officer and educational adviser, USEFI.
The whizkid is, however, modest about his achievement. “My application was very strong. They look for a good school record, extra-curricular accomplishments and teachers’ recommendations. Luckily, I could convince them about my choice of subjects,” Rik told TOI.
For the record, Rik chose Princeton.
Tutor who sold pappad guides all 30 kids to IITs
Pranava K Chaudhary | TNN
Patna: When Patna’s maths wizard Anand Kumar, who once hawked ‘‘pappad’’ to earn a living, started his noble initiative, Super-30, to coach 30 economically weak students for IIT-JEE in 2003 free of cost, 18 of them made it to IITs.
The number of successful candidates rose to 22 in 2004, 26 in 2005 and 28 in 2006. Twenty-eight of the 30 cracked the exam in 2007 as well. And now, all of them—all the 30 aspirants—have come out with flying colours this year.
It was a festival-like scene at Anand’s residence at the nondescript Chand Pur Bela locality in Patna. ‘‘I am planning to select 500 IIT aspirants from across the country to coach them for next year’s JEE,’’ a beaming Anand told TOI and added all of them would be from underprivileged sections of the society.
Himself a bright student, Anand could not pursue higher studies due to poverty spawned by the premature death of his father. ‘‘My mother used to prepare ‘papad’ and I used to pedal in the lanes and bylanes of Patna selling them,’’ Anand recounted, recalling the days which motivated him to help the poor pursue higher studies.
Super-30 was jointly initiated by Anand and IPS officer Abhayanand to provide free coaching and guidance to poor students who show promise. Anand also runs a Ramanujan School of Mathematics (RSM) which pays for the boarding of the Super-30 students. During their seven-month intensive coaching, the students have to strictly stay away from their homes. But they get ‘‘homemade food’’, prepared by Anand’s mother Jayanti Devi.
Son of bidi worker clears UPSC exam Gondia: This is the story of how determination spells success. Hailing from a poor family of bidi labours, 22-year-old Dhananjay Wanjari, is perhaps the youngest IAS aspirant in the country to have cleared the civil services exam this year. A resident of Kamtha (Birsi) village, about 15 km from Gondia, Dhananjay lost his father when he was only 4. His mother, Sumabai, a bidi labourer toiled for her upbringing. He passed his matriculation exam from GES High school, Kamtha and graduated from D B Science College, Gondia. Later he went to Bhopal and Delhi for post graduation and preparation of UPSC examination. Only last year he joined as lecturer at Susil Ismail College in Mumbai.
Speaking to TOI, Sumabai said, “It is very difficult to supplement family income and pursue education at the same time. But Dhananjay did it with diligence. He took each hurdle as a challenge and cleared it with determination.” Sonabai said that Dhananjay used to roll bidis since childhood along with his aunt Rampyari, but was very ambitious. Sonabai recalls that he wanted to be an officer since childhood. Dhananjay, who is currently in Mumbai, said his achievement means there is no dearth of talent in rural parts of India. “It is how one perceives opportunities and makes the most of them that determines success,” he said.
Diwakar Phatak | TNN
Treating Children With Kindness
Adil Salahi, Arab News
Children were always certain of kind treatment by the Prophet (peace be upon him). Whenever he saw a child, he received him/her with a smile and said some pleasant words, even when the Prophet was preoccupied with something very serious. Anas ibn Malik, who served the Prophet throughout his 10-year stay in Madinah, said: “I never saw anyone who was more kind to children than God’s Messenger.” (Related by Muslim.)
He did not differentiate between boys and girls; he was very kind to all, teaching his companions that kindness to children must be an essential characteristic of every Muslim. We should put this in its proper perspective; his was a society characterized by its rough attitude in all situations, and particularly harsh in its treatment of girls and women.
Some Bedouins visiting Madinah saw him kissing one of his grandchildren. One of them asked: “Do you kiss your young ones; by God we never do that.”
The Prophet said: “What can I do for you if God has removed compassion from your heart?” This was a pointed answer, telling those rough people that their attitude was wrong and it should better be changed.
Compassion is a virtue that we should nurture, and its primary aspect is to be kind to young children.
Whenever the Prophet returned to Madinah after being away on an expedition or travel, he was met by children who went out to give him a welcome. Abdullah ibn Jaafar, whose father was a cousin of the Prophet, said that on one such occasion, he was the first taken to the Prophet: “He took me up and placed me in front of him as he was on his mount. Then one of Fatimah’s two sons was brought to him and he placed him behind him. Thus all three of us entered Madinah on one mount.” (Related by Muslim.)
The Prophet was leading the Muslim army on its way to Khaybar when he passed by the living quarters of the Ghifar tribe. He noticed a girl who was walking fast alongside the army. Realizing that she wanted to give any help to the soldiers, the Prophet took her behind him on his mount. When they stopped for rest and he dismounted, he noticed that she looked very shy. He realized that she has just had her period. It was her first time, so he taught her how to clean herself and her clothes. She stayed with the army until after the battle. The Prophet gave her a necklace from the booty. She wore that necklace without ever taking it off. She grew up to achieve fame and was to be known as Layla Al-Ghifariyyah.
Whenever a child was with the Prophet, he would teach that child something simple, short and very effective. Abdullah ibn Abbas was a young boy when he once rode behind the Prophet on his mount. The Prophet said that he wanted to teach him some very useful words. These were: “Be careful with what God has given you, and He will take care of you. Remain within the limits God has set and you will always find Him before you.
Get to know God in times of ease, and He will know you in times of hardship. Learn that what you have missed would have never been yours, and what you have got you would have never missed. Learn also that victory is assured with perseverance, a way out is certain to come after a time of stress, and that hardship is followed by ease.” (Related by Al-Bukahri.)
When we consider these words we realize that they were simple enough to be understood by a 10-year old, yet they can be fundamental in shaping a young man’s attitude to life in general. A young child can easily learn the Prophet’s words by heart, yet they will be of benefit to him throughout his life. Not only so, but the child in this case reported these words so that we can all learn them and bring our attitude to life events in line with them. Yet the Prophet’s teaching of children could be much simpler. Abdullah ibn Busr Al-Mazini reported that when he was a young child, his mother sent him with a bunch of grapes to give to the Prophet. On the way, he ate some grapes. “When I gave it to the Prophet, he held my ear and said: ‘You little cheat!’” Thus the lesson of delivering something intact was given to the young child in a very gentle way.
His companions realized that whatever prayer the Prophet said, God would answer in the broadest and fullest way. Therefore, when children were born, they were often brought to the Prophet to bless them. He would welcome them and do more than their parents hoped for. The whole Muslim community were delighted when Asma’ bint Abu Bakr gave birth to her son, Abdullah, the first child to be born to the Muslim community in Madinah after the Prophet and the Makkan Muslims migrated there.
“She took her newborn to the Prophet. He took the child, put him on his lap, took a date and rubbed the child’s jaws with it before praying for him and blessing him.” (Related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim.)
In some societies, particularly the Arabian society at the time, when adults met, children were told to keep away. The Prophet’s attitude was different; he welcomed children and attended to them.
His companions in Madinah were farmers. They often brought him the early ripe fruit, hoping for a prayer of blessing. “Whenever he was brought such fruit, he would pray: ‘Our Lord, bless our city, our fruit and measures, and make each blessing goes with another.’ He would then give the fruit to the youngest child present.” (Related by Muslim and Al-Tirmidhi). On one occasion he was talking to a group of adults and dates were served to them, when some children came in. He took a bunch of dates and gave it to the children.
This was in total contrast to what any Arab host would have done. Had his children come in when he was entertaining guests, an Arab would have told them off and ordered them out.
In all this the Prophet set an example, not only for people in his generation, but for all future generations. Hence, you find that Muslim parents are always likely to take good care of their children, and to be compassionate to all young people. This ensures that family relations remain strong and families remain closely knit.
This is a great blessing that has yielded great benefits to Muslim families in all societies, across countless generations.
3.5 lakh students bunk Hindi test in ‘ anti- English’ UP
Absenteeism rises in Class X & XII board exams
Strict Vigil against copying keeps students away
By Piyush Srivastava in Lucknow
IN AN irony of sorts, over 3.5 lakh students in the country’s Hindi heartland failed to appear for the Hindi paper in the state’s board examination. Uttar Pradesh has been protesting against English education since a quarter of a century.
The impact of the ‘ Hindi lao angreji hatao’ movement launched by socialist leaders in the 1970s was so strong, lakhs of students stopped learning the English alphabet. Former chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav went to the extent of calling English the “ language of corrupt people”.
Hindi has traditionally held sway in UP, even though it’s English that has helped India shine globally. But this year’s state board examinations have revealed a disturbing trend. The Uttar Pradesh school education department wants to set up a committee to probe why over 3.5 lakh examinees bunked the Hindi test on Thursday. Officials admitted that never before had such a large number of students evaded Hindi papers.
“ So far this year, the drop- out rate was the highest for the Hindi test,” said Prabha Tripathi, secretary of the Board of High School and Intermediate Education. “ We will form a committee to find out why so many students stayed away from the test.” But, the board estimates the drop- out rate could rise in the coming days.
“ If this trend continues, we estimate that over five lakh students will not take the mathematics test on March 10 and 12. For the English papers, the drop- out figure could be as high as seven lakh. These two are the most commonly dreaded subjects,” Tripathi said.
K. M. Tripathi, director, secondary education, said the entire examination system has been revamped this year to check cheating. “ We have tightened the screws on not only unscrupulous students but also teachers. Absenteeism among teachers and their active encouragement to use unfair means is equally deplorable.
Absenteeism has a direct bearing on students’ inclination to cheat. So this session, we had provided teachers with a schedule- book and a calendar to keep track of what they taught on a day- today basis,” he said. He added that strict measures were taken to pre- empt cheating. “ There was a trend to write out the answers on the blackboards. So we instructed every school to either remove the boards from the classrooms or apply a mud coat on it during the duration of the examinations.
The strictness may also be a reason why the drop- out rate has been so high this year,” he said. Education minister Rangnath Mishra said: “ Till date, the government was taken for granted. When Kalyan Singh was the chief minister he had tried to control cheating but failed because the teachers and students resisted his efforts. But this government is made of sterner stuff.”
Expressing the government’s determination to clean up the education system, Mishra said, “ In the last three days, over three dozen school managers have been booked and half a dozen teachers or school employees have been arrested for helping students cheat. Some have been suspended.”
Mishra said while around 46.5 lakh students appeared on the first day of Class X and XII examinations on March 4, the number dipped to 45 lakh the next day. On March 6, the day the Hindi test was held, only 43 lakh wrote their papers. On March 25, when English- I test will be held, as few as 39 lakh students may turn up, he said. “ Given that we have cracked down on cheating very harshly this time, it’s expected that students who are not prepared will develop a phobia and stay away from the examination hall,” he added.
But even he could not explain why Hindi should be on the dreaded list with English and maths in the Hindi belt. piyush. srivastava@ mailtoday. in
A committee will probe the trend to skip exams By Piyush Srivastava in Lucknow 3.5 lakh students bunk Hindi test in ‘ anti- English’ UP Absenteeism rises in Class X & XII board exams NOT HONEST ENOUGH? Strict measures taken by UP to pre- empt cheating may have scared many students away.
Illiteracy in UK More than a million adult Britons have a standard of literacy no better than that of a seven-year-old. For them, reading road signs, writing their names or understanding instructions on pill bottles is a hardship. Anuskha Asthana reports on how beating illiteracy can cut poverty and restore dignity
By the time he was 32 and had hung up his boots, Scott Quinnell had played rugby union for Llanelli 146 times, captained Wales, gained 52 caps and scored 11 international tries. He had even been chosen to play for the British Lions in Australia in 2001.
Yet on the day that he decided to retire, Quinnell – an undisputed Welsh hero – still only had the reading age of a seven-year-old. His writing and spelling were also poor, meaning that his wife had to fill in cheques for him. On more than one occasion fans threw autographs back in anger.
When the sports star decided to tackle the first book in the Harry Potter series, in his late twenties, it took him two months to complete the 223 pages.This week Quinnell will become one of the leading figures of a major campaign aimed at helping the millions of adults in Britain who are barely literate to read for pleasure. He will tell his story in a book that he wrote himself after being treated for severe dyslexia. .The campaign comes as new research reveals that teaching the country’s illiterate parents to read will transform the futures of millions of children.
It was Quinnell’s two children, Lucy, 11, and Steele, nine, who were also dyslexic, that made him want to change his life. ‘I did not want them to go through the same experiences as me, going to their bedroom at night and crying because they were different to everyone else,’ he said. ‘I struggled at school – it was a frustrating time. If you are called lazy and stupid often enough you start to believe it. I was lucky I had sport. I found out I was dyslexic when I was 21, but I did not do anything. I just kept playing.’
Not so for millions of others. There are 1.1 million adults in England with a reading age lower than that of a typical seven-year-old.
For them, reading road signs, taking in the instructions on a medicine bottle or simply writing their name is a hardship. Many try to hide their lack of ability, even from partners or children, often claiming to have forgotten non-existent glasses. When those whose literacy is so poor they could not keep up with an average 11-year-old are taken into account, the number rises to 5.2 million, or almost one in six of all 16- to 65-year-olds. The figures are also high in Wales and Scotland. Others are more sceptical about efforts being made in schools. ‘People who do not learn the basics end up doing the same thing over and over again,’ said Dr Bethan Marshall, an academic at King’s College London.
‘They are taught in exactly the same way again. Then they are identified as the children who are failing,’ she added. ‘Increasingly children are set by ability, and these children are always in the bottom set because they cannot read or write. They might be good at some things but because of that they are cast as irredeemably stupid.’
For her fellow author, Quinnell, reading was something he never even tried until his late 20s, and when he did ‘my eyes would get tired and I would miss paragraphs’, he said. Things have changed dramatically. When the rugby star decided to try Harry Potter again, he finished the last one in the series – which has 607 pages .
Bengal students best at maths: NCERT survey
Akshaya Mukul | TNN New Delhi:
One of the country’s most stringent surveys of learning abilities of class V students by NCERT has found that West Bengal is on top, followed by Karnataka, Gujarat, Jharkhand and Tripura. Uttar Pradesh has also made rapid strides making it to the sixth position.
The survey, which was conducted in 6,828 schools, 79% of them in rural areas, across 266 districts of 33 states and which tested 84,322 students in environment science, maths and language, found that there was a small overall increase (60.31% from 58.87%) in language ability and mathematics (46.51% to 48.46%) in the learning abilities in 2007 from the baseline survey carried out in 2001-02. Bihar and Lakshadweep did not participate in the survey.
While students in many states had increased learning achievement, among the performing states, the story of Tamil Nadu needed to be singled out. Due to poor performance of students in three districts — Karur, Thrivanamalai and Vellore — the state’s mean average came down significantly from the baseline survey of 2001-02.
The survey gave 40 questions in each subject. In mathematics, the students were asked questions on highest common factor/lowest common factor, average, profit and loss, simple interest, measurement, fraction and decimal, percent and geometry. In language, questions on structure of sentence, spelling, comprehension of informative passage and story were asked. In EVS, 20 questions each were on social science and science.
In mathematics, the mean average of West Bengal students was 60% to 70%. In fact, Bengal was the only state in this category. Class V students of Gujarat, Jharkhand, Karnataka, TN, Tripura and UPhad a mean average of 50% to 60%. Students of most of the other states had a mean average of 40% to 50%. These included states like Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, J&K, Kerala, Punjab and Delhi. In Chhatisgarh, Goa and Andaman, class V students had a mean average of less than 40%.
However, in EVS, Karnataka was on top with a mean average of 60% to 70%. West Bengal students had a mean average of 50% to 60%. Students of class V seemed to have a flair for language.
The survey showed that students in 14 states had a mean average of 60% to 70%. Delhi students, lower down in other subjects, were in this category along with West Bengal, Gujarat, UP, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Orissa, Jharkahnd, Himachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Manipur and Chandigarh. Other states had a mean average of 50% to 60%.
In mathematics, the mean average of West Bengal students was 60% to 70%. Students of Gujarat, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Tripura and Uttar Pradesh had a mean average of 50% to 60%
In EVS, Karnataka was on top with a mean average of 60% to 70%. West Bengal students had a mean average of 50% to 60%
In language, West Bengal, Gujarat, UP, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, Orissa, Jharkahnd, HP, Mizoram had a mean average of 60% to 70%
I am very happy to inform everyone that children’s classes wil be conducted in yet another location also.
Classes have commenced from 13 Nov 07. It is about a kilo metre away , almost at the other end of the village.
A teacher Shri Swain, has been appointed.
Hopefully this will serve another 30/40 children.
Have some photos. will put them up as soon I can get them scanned.