Along with academic enrichment and a love for knowledge, equal importance is given to co-curricular activities. Part of the school day is devoted to a wide range of opportunity in the areas of sport, music, dance, theatre and other interests such as gardening, waste management, chess, cooking and more. Children can recognise and develop their own strengths through various activities, both inside and outside the classroom.
Music at Head Start is for all our students. It is a language everyone can understand. Passing by our Music Block one can hear guitars being strummed, keyboards being played, violins resonating, rhythmic tablas and percussion instruments and so much more.
Our Music block has several music rooms. Children are first exposed to rhythm, melody and singing after which they decide on the area they would like to pursue. They can choose an instrument or do vocal training. We have a range of instruments; Indian (classical or folk) and western musical instruments.
Our music teachers are professional musicians who are also music educators. As in all disciplines at Head Start music too is initially taught with a focus on the basics. We strongly believe that the learning of a melody or song is easier once the basics are strong hence we do not start with just tunes but rather with technique and notation or sur and taal.
The aim of the programme is to expose children to music and encourage them to enjoy learning it. Learning to play an instrument well can take time and patience. We encourage our students to persist with their chosen instrument for a sustained period so that they can play and understand it well over time, building a relationship with not only the music but with the instrument as well.
Some of our children have collaborated with musicians from other parts of India and have enjoyed participating in the creation of in-house original music. Our most recent work was with folk musicians from Jaisalmer. Through this exposure and interaction they were able to understand folk music. These particular children have a base in classical music and were amazed by the skill level of folk musicians; they came across certain percussion and melody instruments for the first time. It was truly an enriching experience for us all at Head Start as these musicians from Rajasthan also visited our school and spent a week working with us.
We are continuously evolving our programme and trying to connect music to various other art forms, thus building up an appreciation of all arts. Music gives opportunities for individual enjoyment as well as working in harmony with a group.
Theatre is so much more than just putting up a play. There are many components to consider – an idea, a thought, how to share it. It moves from the idea to the writing of a script, learning how to demonstrate it through words, actions, or various movements. There are children who are thinkers, some are actors, many write beautifully; others enjoy creating the scenic aspects, constructing a stage set, thinking of the lighting or costumes or wondering about the interaction with an audience. Theatre at Head Start is about expression in many forms. Children are encouraged to write their own plays or create a theme around which they wish to work. It is the process which is important and bringing it all together as a group makes it meaningful and worthwhile.
Our theatre facilitators are actors themselves and who have worked on different components of theatre. They enjoy sharing their dramatic experiences with our children and in turn, helping them to develop theirs.
Children are introduced to Physical Education at the age of six. They are exposed to various activities that include running, jumping, catching and other forms of movement. Movement is essential for all round development and facilitates learning, not just for the body, but for the mind and the emotions. Body and spatial awareness, harmony with the environment, a feeling of well-being and fitness are all enhanced through sport, keeping in mind individual interests and ability.
Art is a part of the day to day curriculum and part of our learning.