The Revolutionary Retreat: A Student’s Reflection
This blog post was written by Namya Sinha, 2019 KER Revolutionary and Reap Benefit Solve Ninja
We started our day with a beautiful session based around the Mandala, conducted by Shaheen Mistri, where we each created our own Mandalas depicting our journeys and brought them together to form one. The final product, a giant amalgam of all of our dreams, was the perfect visual depiction of each one our places in this movement. To sum it up, this activity can be described in 4 words- Dreams Combined, Destroyed, Rebuilt. It allowed us to draw parallels from our own lives and gave us the courage to face adversities, to persevere, and make our dreams come true. It was a truly humbling learning experience.
Next up, a Hackathon was conducted by The Apprentice Project where each group attempted solving issues in specific areas of education. The groups selected topics ranging from student collaboration in lesson planning to optimising student contribution during KER Week itself! My team was faced with challenges and tough questions which encouraged us to practice collaboration, communication and creativity. We were each pushed to reconcile our individual identities with our place on a larger team, working towards a common goal. I noticed that whenever things started to go haywire, I was able to give direction to my team, something I realised while my teammates were presenting our ideas to our audience. I was proud be a part of this group of driven students whose ideas and solutions were all rooted in empathy and compassion.
We then practiced the value of gratitude for the people who had been working silently, behind the scenes to enable us to make these connections with each other. I have never been a person who likes to hug much but this session made me realize what I’ve been missing out on – I’ve never hugged this many people in such a short span of time! It was so heartening to watch a hoard of boys pile up on the security guard bhaiya, who ensured our safety over the course of this retreat, the documentation team who had been working tirelessly clicking pictures and shooting videos that beautifully illustrate our teamwork, and other people here at the retreat venue, leaving huge ear-to-ear smiles. Such a simple deed really did bring the people at the retreat a lot closer. This session was oozing positivity and I loved it.
The day’s events ended with the KER Chronicles. We heard some inspiring stories, cracked up over some hilarious jokes and scratched our heads trying to figure out riddles. Having this organic space allowed for us to form informal connections and get to know each other as people outside the scope of our structured sessions. In the evening, while doodling on my notebook, I ended up drawing a Mandala. It brought the whole day to a full circle, quite literally.