We tried to gather as many children as possible. Some were feeling a bit reluctant while some were very excited. Many of the children told they will get ready in few minutes. We had to convince few children to come with us. Some of them asked where the class is, how they will go etc etc. We were a bit worried as how the children would go in the scorching heat. Immediately few of the elder children suggested that they will take their Redhi (the rickshaw used to carry goods) with them and the younger children sat in a group in that. (Now that's called best use of the resources available !!!)
In half an hour we all went to the classroom. We then arranged the different things we had bought for the classroom. Also Lord Saraswati's photo was arranged on the table for Puja. Meanwhile all the children had gathered in the new classroom. Few were making lot of noises. But still they were far more disciplined in front of their teacher. Then we had a small prayer session where all children recited the prayer along with Sumanji. After that we distributed sweets among the children. Few of people living in that area who were passing by asked us as what was happening there and we explained them that we have started a new classroom for children.
Then Sumanji first took attendance of the children who had come there. After that, she started with the teaching basic alphabets to children while the volunteers were helping in managing the children. Many of the children they were taking a good interest. Few of the children had already gone to their schools in villages and they were more eager to come forward and show what they know. But most of the children among them had never gone to school. For them, this was for the first time a classroom experience. The fans in the room were a lot helpful in offsetting the effect of summer. Nearby a bucket filled with water along with glasses was kept for the children if they felt thirsty.
After studying for sometime children were getting a bit restless. Moreover, since it was the first day we expected that it would be the case. Meanwhile, Sachin and Pratik had also brought few old clothes which we had collected earlier and we distributed it among the children. We told the children that they would need to come to class daily from Monday onwards. We also told them that they would be getting stationeries to use if they would come to classroom regularly. Finally the children and volunteers departed around 11 o'clock.
Now we need to ensure that we are able to successfully run this school for children. Such a classroom means that even these children won't be deprived of education, though in a bit informal way. What is more important that they should also be able to read and write and move ahead in life, so that their future doesn't remain dismal just because their parents couldn't afford to send them to school.