Shanti Bhavan provides each of its students with a deep, well-rounded, holistic education. At the core of that education is the Shanti Bhavan curriculum and the instructors who teach it.
There are many different curriculums in the Indian education system. Each has its merits, but Shanti Bhavan uses ISC (Indian School Certificate) curriculum because it challenges students academically, is taught in English, and allows our students to be competitive for college admissions on a global scale. It is one of the most robust curriculums taught in India. While the curriculum can be challenging, students are eased into this environment from a young age as they develop a great foundation for learning.
The Educational Journey
The younger students start their educational journey in the dorms, where they learn the alphabet, numbers, and counting. They also begin learning English through games, activities, and toys. For many of the students, this is the first time they get to play with toys. Through play, they learn interpersonal skills, creative thinking, colors, and shapes. The aunties teach the children how to tie their shoes, clean up after themselves, and adjust to the school routine. Once the students learn how to hold a pencil, they are able to express themselves and unleash their creativity through drawing. With these fundamentals, students become acclimated to Shanti Bhavan and are ready to start their formal ISC curriculum education.
Students entering 2nd grade are introduced to the classrooms on our main campus. They begin learning Hindi, Tamil, basic math, and creative writing. They also work with volunteers who teach them social studies and the global environment. These young students experience many firsts at this age: performing science experiments, using computers, developing their leadership skills, and even learning about the importance of values.
In later grades, the ISC Curriculum becomes more challenging. Students take term exams, join extracurricular activities, and prepare for their 10th and 12th-grade national board exams. These national exams are essential for college admissions and deciding which academic track and college majors they want to pursue. Students with top scores can study anything they choose, from medicine to computer science. Earning a great score wouldn’t be possible without the help and guidance of our teachers on campus and their commitment to the ISC Curriculum.
Teaching the Shanti Bhavan Curriculum
With over 200 kids on campus, Shanti Bhavan needs many teachers to guide our students’ academic development. While volunteers help teach students, we also have many full-time teachers who have been with Shanti Bhavan for years.
A typical day for a teacher at Shanti Bhavan begins around 6:30 am when the campus opens. They hold morning preparation sessions (a.k.a study halls) and join students in the cafeteria for breakfast. First-period classes start at 8:30 am. After the first period, all students, teachers, volunteers, and administrators gather for the morning assembly. Assembly is where older students share world news, current events, and exciting updates about the sports teams and competitions that students partake in. It is a moment in their day when everyone at Shanti Bhavan feels the sense of community that unites them all.
Each teacher’s schedule looks different and is based upon their teaching strengths. For example, a teacher might serve as the 10th-grade Physics teacher as well as the 2nd-grade Maths teacher. Each grade has lunch at a different period, and teachers take their lunch break with whichever grade they’re teaching during that time. The school day concludes at 3:30 pm, after which the teachers often act as advisors or coaches for extracurricular activities. After dinner, teachers finish grading homework and exams and work on preparing for the day ahead.
Through its rigorous curriculum and exceptional teachers, Shanti Bhavan challenges and develops our students’ curiosity. The curriculum provides the necessary skills and knowledge for students’ success in college and their careers after graduation. Our teachers play an integral part in Shanti Bhavan’s success as they carefully craft lessons and help the children become global citizens of change.