So lately, we noticed that we had been feeding kids and feeding kids and feeding ’em some more but despite promises of “kal se aayenge” (we will come for painting tomorrow onwards), it was really not happening! So we decided to change the rules a little bit, despite Shaila’s clear communication that she is “dead against it”. The idea was to first hold the art program and then do lunch at the end of the one hour art session. This way, with roll-call at the beginning of the class and at the end of it, the kids have to stay for art and learning, and only then they get food.Let me tell you, standing up to our kids a task only for the bravest, and I am certainly at the other end of the levels of brave- the tiny yellow spot marked “chicken”. But with the other team members- the two teachers, Usha and Seema, Sanghamitra (our lovely friend from Woodstock was in town that day), Shaila (of course, else this would not have happened) and a few teachers and students from Welham Boys- we took a deep breath and announced that food would be served at the end of the class.The result was a set of scorching, blazing, hate-filled stares right back at all of us and the kids started talking loudly about how we thought we were too smart for them, that they were treated as a burden by us and a whole lot of other heart-wrenching dialogues that the kids seem so comfortable in lashing out! But we persevered and slowly the ranting toned down to a lot of grumbling.But it happened! The kids sat down to paint and draw. Others, who usually never turn up for classes did not turn up that day, either. This does not mean we are selective of who we work with; it just means we will now focus on why this non-attending bunch does not want to be part of Street Smart.
Until then, the mutiny aboard Street Smart seemed to have worked this time… at least for two successive days!
PS- Shout out to the lovely lady and his son who run a food thela and serve our children food everyday. They were most helpful and sternly sent back one or two amongst our bunch who decided to try their luck with an early bite!
PPS- We are two months old now!! Yay yay!! 🙂