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Hindi Language – Did you know?

  • India’s Hindi-speaking regions celebrate Hindi Day annually on 14th September. Hindi Day commemorates the adoption of Hindi as an official language by the Indian Constituent Assembly in 1965.
  • Hindi got its name from the Persian word Hind, meaning ‘land of the Indus River’
  • Nearly 425 million people speak Hindi as a first language and around 120 million as a second language.
  • Hindi is the main language of Indian states of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and the capital Delhi in North India; Bihar and Jharkhand in Eastern India; Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh in Central India and Rajasthan in West India. It’s widely understood in several other states of India.
  • Hindi is also spoken in some countries outside India, such as in Mauritius, Fiji, Suriname, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago and Nepal.
  • Each letter of the Hindi alphabet has its own independent and distinct sound. As a result, Hindi words are pronounced exactly as they are written, making the Hindi language easy to learn.

By

Dr Satish Pande
HOD Hindi Language.
K J Somaiya College of Arts and Commerce

Jaan hai to Jahan hai

Jaan hai to jahan hai
Dr Shrirang Joshi

“The bravest thing I ever did was continuing my life when I wanted to die.” – Anonymous

God has gifted us a wonderful life. What makes some people throw away the most precious thing they have? And what can we do to prevent suicides?
It has to be a concerted effort of all; parents, teachers, friends, mental health professionals, and the entire society.

Let us identify and understand the most common situation which may act as a trigger.

Actual or perceived loss of something valuable:
Sad man holding head with handA person, who is in love, invests so much energy into building the relationship that when it breaks, the person is shattered. He/She cannot envision a life without that relationship. Such a person is disturbed and at risk of getting depressed and committing suicide. In most cases, he/she cannot share it with parents as they may have different values and they may not be supportive. He/She may share with friends, but they may be ill-equipped to help. At times, such students need professional help to vent out their feelings and to cope with their emotional pain and loss. Some students do not approach a counsellor because of the societal stigma attached to it.
Exam results can be another trigger for students developing suicidal ideas. Most students equate failure with a loss of face or a hopeless future. They cannot face such ‘disgrace’ or ‘hopelessness’. They cannot share their emotional pain with their parents as they may fear the scolding of parents. They need to be told and convinced that failure is a part of everyone’s life and there can be good life beyond the worst failures.

Parental pitfalls:
1] Denial: Most parents are in denial about the possibility of mental health issues affecting their child. They need to be aware of mental health issues, be alert to their child’s situation and respond appropriately to it.
2] Being Judgemental: Parents may have a different value system. It may not allow them to be supportive of their child facing relationship issues or academic failures. Parents should not be judgemental. They need to be sympathetic to the children’s issues.
3] Failing to understand the severity: Even if parents identify and acknowledge their children’s mental health issues, they may fail to estimate the severity of the situation. They may brush it off as a mild issue and may not take the required action.

Do’s for parents:
Female supportIt is extremely important to develop a rapport with your children. We all know that spending time with children and having good communication with them is critical for their growth. But many parents get engaged in their daily life and are unable to find the required time. A good rapport will allow the youngsters to unhesitatingly discuss the issues which they may be facing. A parent should also be alert to any behavioural changes in the child. A parent should not hesitate to take professional help when needed.

 

The role of society:
Society plays an important role in shaping our mindset. It relates to physical pain and emotional pain differently. Physical pain is considered real as it is visible, whereas emotional pain is considered unreal since it is not visible. Society allows us to talk about physical pain, whereas it is taboo to talk about emotional pain. Physical pain is considered as due to some illness, whereas emotional pain is considered due to some weakness of that person. Society allows and encourages us to consult doctors for physical pain but discounts mental health issues and discourages to consult doctors for emotional pain.
Let us all work towards creating a society which is supportive to people having emotional pain. The stigma of visiting a mental health professional should be eradicated. I want everyone to realise that there is a wonderful life beyond the momentary feeling of hopelessness and despair. Kyu ki……

Jaan hai to jahan hai!!!

Dr Shrirang Joshi is a psychiatrist and counsellor attached to Somaiya Vidyavihar campus

मानसिक स्वच्छता दिवस के रूप में संवत्सरी पर्व की भूमिका

इस दिन सभी परस्पर एक-दूसरे से अपने ज्ञात और अज्ञात भूलों अथवा अपराधों के लिए क्षमा याचना करते हैं, न केवल परस्पर ही, अपितु मानवमात्र और प्राणिमात्र से भी क्षमा की प्रार्थना करते हैं। इसप्रकार प्रत्येक प्राणिमात्र के प्रति क्षमायाचना करते हुए अपने मन की शुद्धि का पर्व मनाया जाता है। अक्सर हम अपने मित्रों से क्षमा मांगते हैं, जबकि क्षमा तो हमें अपने शत्रुओं से मांगनी चाहिए।

Dr S. P. Jain, Acting Director, K.J. Somaiya Centre for Studies in Jainism shares insights on Michhami Dukkdam

मानसिक स्वच्छता दिवस के रूप में संवत्सरी पर्व की भूमिका
डा. शुद्धात्मप्रकाश जैन

पर्यूषण पर्व जैनधर्म के सर्वोत्कृष्ट पर्व के रूप में जाना जाता है। इसी पर्यूषण पर्व के दौरान जैनधर्मावलम्बी संवत्सरी पर्व या क्षमापना पर्व भी मनाते हैं। पर्यूषण शब्द दो शब्दों से मिलकर बना है- परि और उष्ण। परि अर्थात् सभी ओर से तथा उष्ण अर्थात् कर्मों का दहन करना। इसप्रकार पर्यूषण शब्द कर्मों के नाश करने का प्रतीक है। जैनधर्म के दो सम्प्रदाय हैं& श्वेताम्बर और दिगम्बर। श्वेताम्बर धर्मावलम्बी इस पर्व को 8 दिन तक मनाते हैं और इसके पश्चात् दिगम्बर धर्मावलम्बी इस पर्व को 10 तक मनाते हैं- इसप्रकार यह पर्व कुल 18 दिनों तक चलता है।
प्रायः सामान्यजन को यह प्रश्न होना स्वाभाविक है कि यह पर्व क्यों मनाया जाता है, उत्तर इसप्रकार हो सकता है कि जिस प्रकार हम प्रतिदिन अपने शरीर की शुद्धि करते हैं, उसी प्रकार यह पर्व मन की शुद्धि का पर्व है। न केवल जैनों को ही यह पर्व मनाना चाहिए, अपितु यह तो प्राणिमात्र का पर्व है। यह पर्व किसी धर्म या सम्प्रदाय से सम्बन्धित न होकर सम्पूर्ण मनुष्यजाति के हितार्थ है। यदि हर मनुष्य इसे मनाये तो आज मनोमालिन्य, कलुषता, विद्वेष, कलह आदि समस्याओं का समाधान अनायास ही हो सकता है। इस दृष्टि से इस पर्व को अन्तरराष्ट्रीय पर्व के रूप में स्वीकृति प्रदान की जा सकती है।
ईसामसीह को जब सूली पर चढ़ाया गया, उस समय उन्होंने कहा- “हे प्रभु! ये लोग क्या कर रहे हैं, इसका इनको ज्ञान नहीं है, इसलिए इन्हें मेरी ओर से क्षमा कर देना। ये अज्ञानतावश ऐसा कर रहे हैं, इन्हें क्षमा करना।” इस प्रकार न केवल जैनधर्म में क्षमा की बात कही गई है । अपितु विश्वधर्म का यही कहना है।

यद्यपि क्षमापना पर्व मनाने के लिए किसी निश्चित दिवस का इन्तजार करना उचित नहीं है। क्या मन की स्वच्छता के लिए भी किसी नियत दिन का इन्तजार करना उचित है।  मन में विकारों और कषायों की जब उत्पत्ति हो जाये तभी उनका परिमार्जन कर शुद्धि कर लेनी चाहिए। तथापि गलती करने वाला गलती का अहसास होने पर भी अपने अहंकार के कारण क्षमा मांगने को सहज ही तैयार नहीं हो पाता है, अतः क्षमापनापर्व के प्रसंग पर सहज ही ऐसा वातावरण बन जाता है कि गलती करने वाला अपनी गलती को भूलकर सहज ही क्षमा करने और क्षमा मांगने को तैयार हो जाता है।
इस दिन सभी परस्पर एक-दूसरे से अपने ज्ञात और अज्ञात भूलों अथवा अपराधों के लिए क्षमा याचना करते हैं, न केवल परस्पर ही, अपितु मानवमात्र और प्राणिमात्र से भी क्षमा की प्रार्थना करते हैं। इसप्रकार प्रत्येक प्राणिमात्र के प्रति क्षमायाचना करते हुए अपने मन की शुद्धि का पर्व मनाया जाता है। अक्सर हम अपने मित्रों से क्षमा मांगते हैं, जबकि क्षमा तो हमें अपने शत्रुओं से मांगनी चाहिए।
क्षमा के प्रसंग पर अक्सर कहा जाता है कि सामने वाले ने मुझसे क्षमा मांगी ही नहीं तो मैं क्षमा कैसे करूं, लेकिन यदि ऐसा हो तो इस पर्व के आयोजन में पराधीनता आ जायेगी। कोई जीव हमसे क्षमा मांगे, चाहे नहीं, हमें क्षमा करे, चाहे नहीं, हम तो अपनी ओर से सबको क्षमा करते हैं और सबसे क्षमा मांगते हैं- इसप्रकार हम तो अब किसी के शत्रु नहीं रहे और न हमारी दृष्टि में कोई हमारा शत्रु रहा है। इसीप्रकार क्षमा मांगने पर भी कोई यदि हमें क्षमा नहीं करता है तो क्रोध का त्याग न करने से उसका ही बुरा होगा, हमने तो क्षमायाचना द्वारा मान का त्याग कर, अपने में विनयधर्म प्रकट कर लिया। इसप्रकार इस पर्व को मनाने के लिए कोई पराधीनता नहीं है। क्षमायाचना और क्षमादान- ये दोनों ही हृदय को हल्का करने वाली उदात्त वृत्तियां हैं बैरभाव को मिटाकर परमशान्ति प्रदान करने वाली हैं।

Somaiya Vidyavihar University has become a reality

Dear friends,

On the 26th of August 2019, Somaiya Vidyavihar University has become a reality. Many of our institutions will combine together to become a part of this University.

In an earlier email, https://president.somaiya.edu/en/view-communications-page/91 I had mentioned how I had promised my grandfather, our founder, Padma Bhushan K. J. Somaiya, that I will, in my lifetime, endeavour to make Somaiya Vidyavihar an institution that any person in the world would want to apply to. This was a condition he made, when he allowed me to go study at Cornell. We traded dreams. My dream to go to Cornell, and his dream to make Somaiya into an institution that his grandson, and by extension, others would aspire to attend.

Becoming a University is a necessary part of that journey and that goal.

Jawahar Lal Nehru said at Indian independence:

A moment comes, which comes but rarely in history, when we step out from the old into the new’

Later he adds

‘The achievement we celebrate today is but a step, an opening of opportunity, to the greater triumphs and achievements that await us.’

This is a similar time for us. Becoming a University is a time for charting our own course. On what we teach, and how we teach it.

Our vision statement https://www.somaiya.edu/en/our-vision  articulates the kind of institution we are trying to create.

We do dream of making a world-class institution of teaching, research and service, and build on the aspiration of our founder. We need to imagine what makes for a good education. We need to determine that for ourselves, in our local context, and in the global world that we live in today.
Today, many of our institutions transition to University status. Our other institutions are also part of this journey toward excellence.

I would like to make our new beginning with the old Hindi film song:

आज पुरानी ज़ंजीरों को तोड़ चुके हैं
क्या देखें उस मंज़िल को जो छोड़ चुके हैं
चाँद के दर पर जा पहुंचा है आज ज़माना
नए जगत से हम भी नाता जोड़ चुके हैं
नया खून हैं नई उमंगें, अब है नई जवानी
हम हिन्दुस्तानी …

Samir Somaiya

“Why do people share fake news?

The study results revealed that online trust, self-disclosure, fear of missing out (FOMO), and social media fatigue are positively associated with the sharing of fake news (intentionally). In contrast, social comparison has a negative association. The study findings also indicated that online trust has negative association with authenticating news before sharing.

Online trust, self-disclosure, fear of missing out (FOMO), and social media fatigue prompt people to spread rumours and falsehoods online, as per a study by Dr. Shalini Talwar, Associate Professor, Department of Finance and Law, K J Somaiya Institute of Management Studies & Research (SIMSR).

The study titled “Why do people share fake news? Associations between the dark side of social media use and fake news sharing behaviour” was published in the Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services (JRCS). Dr Talwar collaborated with researchers in Finland, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan to undertake this novel study.

 

“The fear of missing out grips individuals when they feel excluded from their social or peer group”

 

Dr. Shalini Talwar

We had a chat with Dr Shalini Talwar on her research:

 

About the research

The study examined the empirical associations between the dark side of online social media and fake news sharing behaviour of social media users. The explanatory constructs that constituted the proposed research model were social media fatigue, fear of missing out (FOMO), social comparison, self-disclosure and online trust.

 

What were the findings?

The study results revealed that online trust, self-disclosure, fear of missing out (FOMO), and social media fatigue are positively associated with the sharing of fake news (intentionally). In contrast, social comparison has a negative association. The study findings also indicated that online trust has negative association with authenticating news before sharing.

 

How many subjects were involved?

A large cross-sectional data from 1022 social media users was collected to test the research model, formulated using social comparison theory, self-determination theory, rational choice theory and seminal work on psychology and communication.

 

How long did it take?

One year from conceptualization to publishing.

 

What was the analysis?

The conceptual model hypothesized the relationship of the selected antecedents, namely, online trust, self-disclosure, FOMO, social comparison and social media fatigue with sharing fake news and authenticating fake news before sharing online. The model was tested using SPSS 23 (IBM Corp. 2017) and AMOS 23. First, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) for the measurement model was performed to examine the model fit indices and different forms of validity and reliability. Afterwards, the structural path and different hypotheses were assessed using structural equation modelling (SEM).

 

 

M.Sc Polymer Science

Somaiya Vidyavihar launched India’s first Masters in Polymer Science, jointly developed with Industry experts.

 A unique course, the only one in India, has been developed jointly by prominent polymer Industrial and academics/researchers from national labs. The research-oriented course offers Polymer Chemistry, Polymer Physics and Polymer Engineering specialization.

M.Sc. Polymer Science

Somaiya Vidyavihar launched India’s first Masters in Polymer Science, jointly developed with Industry experts.

 A unique course, the only one in India, has been developed jointly by prominent polymer Industrial and academics/researchers from national labs. The research-oriented course offers Polymer Chemistry, Polymer Physics and Polymer Engineering specialization.

Polymer Science, an interdisciplinary area, comprising of chemical, physical, engineering, processing, and theoretical aspects, is of increasing importance in developing modern functional materials. Despite its importance today and potential for future economic growth, there is no university-level program for polymer science in India.

The two-year Master of Science polymer program has been jointly designed by scientists, industry and the faculty of Somaiya Vidyavihar with the goal to capacities in the field competitive with renowned polymer centres worldwide.

Students will get the opportunity to learn from renowned, experienced faculty as well as Scientists, Researchers and industry professionals with Doctoral and Post-doctoral qualifications. As part of the course, for one semester, students will work in industry and R&D.

The Master’s programme in Polymer Science will provide students with the comprehensive tools needed to develop future materials for applications in health care, energy production, packaging, surface coatings and other industries.

Padmashri Prof. S. Sivaram. Ex-Director of NCL Pune an internationally renowned Polymer Scientist and an institution builder is the Chair Professor for this Programme. The Programme is overseen by a galaxy of eminent researchers and industrialists from premier institutions.

The course will equip students for Work in industry and provides advanced training for research at the PhD level.

A smile and a patient reply make all the difference.

Admissions are a stressful time for parents and students. Student Volunteers from S K Somaiya College of Arts, Science and Commerce set up a Help Desk admissions assistance needed for all courses.   Students who have gone through the process themselves, understand well the questions and the fears behind it.

Admissions are a stressful time for parents and students. Student Volunteers from            S K Somaiya College of Arts, Science and Commerce set up a Help Desk admissions assistance needed for all courses.   Students who have gone through the process themselves, understand well the questions and the fears behind it.

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Integrated approach in environmental education by each of our institutes.

Somaiya Vidyavihar, with its commitment to the environment and as an academic institution, take our role in building capacity in environmental education seriously.

On World Environment Day, we share some of the courses by our various institutes. We are proud of the initiatives and integrated approach in environmental education by each of our institutes.

In recent years, there has been increasing recognition of the importance of education for addressing environmental issues. Environmental Education enables students and the various stakeholders in the community to develop the necessary experience and skills needed to find solutions.

With our commitment to the environment and as an academic institution, we take our role in building capacity in environmental education seriously.

On World Environment Day, we share some of the courses by our various institutes. We are proud of the initiatives and integrated approach in environmental education by each of our institutes.

K J Somaiya College of Science and Commerce

  • FYBCOM- Sem 1- Environmental Science-1
  •  FYBCOM- Financial Markets- Sem1- Business Environment
  • SY-Bachelor in Management Studies-Foundation Course-Environmental Management-III
  •  BSC- Sem1-Botany (1&2)
  •  BSC-Sem1-Zoology
  • FYBSC-Biotechnology- Sem1-Animal Biology and Prokaryotic Diversity
  • FYBSC-Biotechnology- Sem1-Stains And Microscopy, Ecological Interactions And Biotechnology
  • Capacity Development Program in Environment Management
  •  Master of Science- Environmental Science
  •  Post Graduate Diploma in Environment Management
  •  Post Graduate Diploma on Solid Waste Management

K J Somaiya Junior College of Arts & Commerce

  • B.Com-1st yr-sem1&2- EVS
  • FY-Bachelor in Management Studies- Environmental Management
    i. Environmental Concept
    ii. Environment Degradation
    iii. Sustainability and Role of Business
    iv. Innovations in Business- an environmental perspective

S K Somaiya Vinay Mandir Junior College

  • HSC-Arts-IT- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Arts- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Science- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Commerce- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Commerce-IT- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • XI-Minimum Competency Vocational Course (HSC.VOC.)- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Vocational Science Computers- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Vocational Science Electronics- Environment Education- XI & XII
  • HSC-Vocational Science Commerce- Environment Education- XI & XII

K J Somaiya College of Science and Commerce

  • FYBCOM- Sem 1- EVS
  • SY Bachelor in Management Studies – Sem 3- Foundation course -Environment Management (III)
  • Capacity Development Program in Environment Management
  • Master of Environmental Science
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Environment Management
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Solid Waste Management

S K Somaiya Degree College of Arts, Science and Commerce

  • FY BCOM- Sem1- Environmental Studies
  • FY BCOM- Sem2- Environmental Studies
  •  FY BMS- Sem2- Environmental Management

 K J Somaiya Institute of Management Studies and Research

  • Post Graduate Diploma in Management – 2nd yr Marketing-Environmental Management
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Management – 2nd yr Finance- Environmental Management
  •  Post Graduate Diploma in Management – 2nd yr HR- Environmental Management
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Management – 2nd yr Operations- Environmental Management
  • Post Graduate Diploma in International Business Management – 2nd yr- Environmental Management
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Health Care Management- – 2nd yr- Environmental Health and Safety Management
  • Masters in Management Studies 1st yr-Environment Management
  • Masters in Management Studies 2nd yr Operations-  Environment Conscious Manufacturing

K J Somaiya College of Engineering

  • FE (1st yr) Sem 1- Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Sustainable Development
Module 3- Environmental Pollution
Module 4- Environmental Legislation
Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
Module 6- Environment and Technology

  • TE- (3rd yr) Sem 5- Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Nonliving Environment
Module 2- Living Environment
Module 3- Social Environment
Module 4- Environmental Conservation
Module 5- Global Efforts in Protecting the Living Environment

  • BE (4th yr) Sem 8- Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering- Non Conventional Energy Sources

Module 1- Energy requirement of India and World
Module 2- Solar Energy & Hydro Power
Module 3- Wind Energy
Module 4- Geothermal Energy
Module 5- Ocean Energy
Module 6- Biomass Energy & Chemical Energy Sources

 

  • FE (1st yr) Sem 1- Bachelors in Information Technology- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Sustainable Development
Module 3- Environmental Pollution
Module 4- Environmental Legislation
Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
Module 6- Environment and Technology

  • TE (3rd yr) Sem 5- Bachelors in Information Technology- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Natural Resources (Renewable & Non-renewable resources)
Module 3- Ecosystems
Module 4- Biodiversity and its conservation
Module 5- Environmental Pollution
Module 6- Social Issues and Environment
Module 7- Human Population and Environment

 

  • FE (1st yr) Sem 1- Bachelors in Electronics Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Sustainable Development
Module 3- Environmental Pollution
Module 4- Environmental Legislation
Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
Module 6- Environment and Technology

 

  • FE (3rd yr) Sem 1- Bachelors in Computer Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Sustainable Development
Module 3- Environmental Pollution
Module 4- Environmental Legislation
Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
Module 6- Environment and Technology

  •  TE (3rd yr) Sem 5- Bachelors in Computer Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Natural Resources (Renewable & Non-renewable resources)
Module 3- Ecosystems
Module 4- Biodiversity and its conservation
Module 5- Environmental Pollution
Module 6- Social Issues and Environment
Module 7- Human Population and Environment
Module 8- Understanding Existence and Co-existence

  • FE – Sem 1- Bachelors in Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering- Environmental Studies

Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
Module 2- Sustainable Development
Module 3- Environmental Pollution
Module 4- Environmental Legislation
Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
Module 6- Environment and Technology

K J Somaiya College of Engineering and Information Technology

  • FE – Sem 1 & 2- Bachelors in Information Technology- Environmental Studies
    Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
    Module 2- Sustainable Development
    Module 3- Environmental Pollution
    Module 4- Environmental Legislation
    Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
    Module 6- Environment and Technology
  • FE – Sem 1- Bachelors in Computer Engineering- Environmental Studies
    Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
    Module 2- Sustainable Development
    Module 3- Environmental Pollution
    Module 4- Environmental Legislation
    Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
    Module 6- Environment and Technology
  • FE – Sem 1- Bachelors in Electronics and Telecommunication Engineering- Environmental Studies
    Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
    Module 2- Sustainable Development
    Module 3- Environmental Pollution
    Module 4- Environmental Legislation
    Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
    Module 6- Environment and Technology
  •  FE (1st yr) Sem 1- Bachelors in Electronics Engineering- Environmental Studies
    Module 1- Multidisciplinary Nature of Environmental Studies
    Module 2- Sustainable Development
    Module 3- Environmental Pollution
    Module 4- Environmental Legislation
    Module 5- Renewable Sources of Energy
    Module 6- Environment and Technology

 K J Somaiya Comprehensive College of Education Training and Research

  • Bachelors in Education- 2nd yr- Optional Course on Environment Education
  •  Masters in Education- 2nd yr– Specializations on Courses-Environment Education

 Smt Sakarbai K Somaiya Junior College of Education

  • DTDEd. (Diploma in Teachers Education) English / Hindi / Marathi medium- Environmental Study & Geography

MEDITATIVE MOMENTS

Meditation can be also incorporated in our day to day life. It is like moving from closed eyes to open eyes meditation. These are called as “Meditative Moments”.

Meditation is a powerful process that touches one on many levels – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Our mind has infinite potential including the capacity for empathy, compassion, content, equanimity and creativity. The same mind, on the other hand, falls prey to worrying, jealousy, being critical and judgemental. Depending on how our mind is used it can contribute towards us being happy, content, stress-free or even totally miserable.

This is where the great potential of meditation lies – to harness the positive energies and channelize them towards a more happy and fulfilling existence! The essence of meditation practice is to be aware, present and focused in the present moment. It is the process of teaching the mind to come back to the present.

Research has confirmed what the yogis have known since centuries – that meditation has a potent effect on our physiological and psychological well being changing the way our bodies and brain function; contributing to better health outcomes. Studies have shown how meditation lowers the levels of adrenaline and cortisone and helps alleviate conditions such as depression, hypertension, migraine and pain whilst boosting immunity and fostering a sense of happiness and peace. Hence it is not surprising that meditation has been rightly called as ‘ MEDICATION’ for the mind-body complex.

Even 10 minutes of meditation on a regular basis can make a big difference to our well being. It enables one to experience peace of mind which is an essential component of optimal well being. There are numerous types of meditation techniques like focussing on the breath or specific body parts, chanting of mantras, sound healing, compassion and kriya yoga meditation which provide us with a point of focus or concentration and confer specific benefits directed towards a salubrious existence.

Having said that, meditation can be also incorporated in our day to day life. It is like moving from closed eyes to open eyes meditation. These are called as “Meditative Moments”.

Let us see how we become meditative in some of the tasks:

 

  • Meditation at traffic lights: Most of us commute via public or private transport. Lot of time we experience jams in which we cannot do anything. Instead of getting frustrated and tensed, just take a deep breath and relax the muscles in your face, shoulders and hands.

 

  • While travelling: Be alert which travelling. Don’t be absent-minded. Notice all the information coming through your senses – what you see, hear and feel. This can help to remain concentrated without judgement.

 

  • First thing on the desk: After reaching the workplace, don’t start the work immediately. Most of the time when we start work, we are scattered. It is very important that we become concentrated and relaxed before starting work. Became aware of your breath. Let it move gently and slowly, trying to find a rhythm in the breath. Continue with rhythmic breathing for a few breaths and then start your work. You will find that your efficiency and productivity improves.

 

  • Difficult meetings: Before meeting a difficult person, or facing a difficult situation, take a few deep breaths. Every time you exhale, feel that you are releasing all the negative emotions.

 

  • Remain focused: Do whatever you do as an exercise of concentration and remain fully focused. With any distractions that arise, gently bring your focus back to the task at hand.

 

  • Stressed or calm: Notice the state of your mind while you are using your phone or answering an email. Are you stressed and anxious? Or calm and confident? Whatever it is, try approaching that emotion meditatively.

 

  •  Lunch time: Pay attention to the sensations in your body as you eat. Take time to really experience your food: notice it’s texture and colours. What does it smell like? As you take each mouthful, notice as many flavours as you can. Observe how your mind and body reacts to each taste.

 

  • Specific about use: We are a good multitasker. We try to do many things at a time. Lot of our stuff happens on the phone. Lot of time we use our phone for a purpose and get distracted doing something else. When you unlock your phone with a specific purpose in mind, complete that purpose before you open any other app or notification.

 

  • Be present: When having a conversation with someone, be 100 per cent present: hold their gaze and notice their body language. Really listen to what they are saying, and consider your response. Don’t judge before hand. Be mindful and remain open.

 

These are few Meditative Moments which can be incorporated in our day to day life and we can make Meditation as a part of our living world.

By

Sandeep Solanki

Faculty
K J Somaiya Bhartiya Sanskriti Peetham

In conversation with The Somaiya School topper – Debanjan Bhattacharjee

The Somaiya School is proud that we have scored 100% results. Our students have performed exceeding well and came out with flying colours at the CBSE results exams.

In conversation with our school topper Debanjan Bhattacharjee, who has topped the school by scoring 98.6% and attained 493/500 marks in his exams

The Somaiya School is proud that we have scored 100% results. Our students have performed exceeding well and came out with flying colours at the CBSE results exams.

We  spoke with our school topper Debanjan Bhattacharjee, who has topped the school by scoring 98.6%  and attained 493/500 marks in his exams

SVV Blog Team: First of all congratulations Debanjan! Please tell us how do you feel with this achievement?

Debanjan: It feels great! However, I would feel even better, had I attained better marks in English. I was expecting somewhere around 97-98 out of 100 since my English paper went well but I ended up with 95 marks and my overall percentage decreased because of that. Otherwise, I’m pretty happy.

SVV Blog Team: Can you throw some light on how you prepared for the exams? How many hours did you study? How did you prepare for the exams?

Debanjan: I didn’t have a plan in mind as to how many hours to study in a day, but on average, I studied for around 2-3 hours every day. As much as possible I strived to keep a balance between all my subjects. Also, I studied from the first day itself and that’s how I did not allow myself to build unnecessary exam pressure. I started preparing thoroughly right from the start. I think it is this action that helped the most.

SVV Blog Team: What are your hobbies?

Debanjan: I enjoy playing the tabla, and I also enjoy singing. When I want to unwind or take a break from studies I like to play video games. Even during my exams, I did not give up entirely on these recreational activities. I only reduced the time.

 

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Debanjan with his Parents and Principal Parveen Shaikh

SVV Blog Team: Who would you contribute your success to ? in what way did he/she help?
Debanjan: That would most certainly be my teachers, parents, grandparents, the school authorities and my Principal ma’am. The school has helped me a lot. I don’t think it would have been possible without their efforts.

The school teachers were very friendly since the start. I didn’t hesitate to ask any questions or clear my doubts. They were more than willing to answer my queries. They helped me clear all my doubts. They gave us worksheets and practice lessons regularly. And I think that helped me.

 

SVV Blog Team:  Considering that at your age a lot of youngsters succumb to the pressures of being in social media, either by participating or spending too much screen time. Did you give in or did you resist temptations of social media or reduce screen time when preparing for exams?
Debanjan: Fortunately, in my case, I didn’t have to resist any temptations. I used my phone regularly. But after December and January, I took my studies even more seriously.
It is normal that when exams are approaching, most students probably give up their phones and reduce their usage. However, I think I managed to have self-control, as I didn’t give up on my phone, but I didn’t spend a lot of time on it either. I did not let it affect my studies. I was fully aware of the adverse effects of using my phone a lot. Also, I had a fixed time for using my phone. I used it for one hour daily, and that was enough.

 

SVV Blog Team: What is that that you would you like to pursue? Why?

Debanjan: I want to pursue engineering. I am fascinated by planes since childhood, and I am curious about how they fly and how they function so I plan to go for Air space Engineering. So yes I want to pursue Aeronautics.

 

SVV Blog Team:  What are your plans now?

Debanjan: Currently, I’m preparing for JEE Mains. I hope to get into IIT so if I get in then nothing like because that’s my dream college.

 

SVV Blog Team: So how do you plan to celebrate the success?
Debanjan: I haven’t thought about it yet. I’ve got what I wanted. Right now I am overwhelmed.

 

SVV Blog Team: Lastly, What advice would you give to other students, who are preparing for their exams next year?
Debanjan: I want to tell them, that practice is the key to everything. Solve more and more question papers. That is probably the only thing that will make you more confident. I followed the same. I used to solve 2-3 question papers daily and could finish it before time, so I had the time to revise, and that’s an important thing.

I studied for around 2-3 hours every day. As much as possible I strived to keep a balance between all my subjects. Also, I studied from the first day itself and that’s how I did not allow myself to build unnecessary exam pressure. I started preparing thoroughly right from the start. I think it is this action that helped the most.

Learning our Heritage

At the Somaiya Center for Experiential Learning we design immersive learning experiences in the areas of Heritage Conservation and Environmental Sustainability that enables participants to be curious, creative, think critically and feel empowered to participate in issues that affect the community and the world around them.

In India, we are blessed with the legacy of a rich heritage – tangible and intangible. Some of the historical monuments are centuries old and don’t fail to enthral generation after generation. These monuments are filled with stories – of communities that lived there, their occupation their lifestyle, their art and culture. These spaces provide excellent opportunities to not just learn about history but also about the heritage that surrounds it – both natural and cultural heritage.

While history is the study of our past; heritage refers to the objects and values that belong to the past, looked after in the present for the benefit of the future. Heritage – tangible or intangible, gives us a sense of identity & belonging. It gives us insights into where we come from and who we are and helps build understanding and respect for diversity.

Our recent experiential learning journey to explore the ruins of Pattadakal and Bijapur – with an archaeologist, a guide, a renowned Bharatnatyam dancer, a French researcher, and a bunch of students in tow – provided different perspectives about our past that we otherwise fail to learn from school textbooks.

It all started with a site based learning programme that we designed for school kids as part of the Somaiya Center for Experiential Learning.

Along with 44 kids and a few teacher volunteers, we set off at 7am from a place called Sameerwadi in Bagalkot district of Karnataka. Our first destination was Pattadakal – a place known for its exquisite display of both the Indo-Aryan and Dravidian style of architecture. These beautiful sepia coloured majestic temple structures chiselled to perfection are a delight to the eyes and the soul.

DSC_0807Mr Chandru was our local guide and one with excellent storytelling skills and full of fascinating trivia spoke with passion as he explained how Pattadakal got its name – ‘Patta’ means ‘Crown’ and this is where the kings of the Chalukyan dynasty were crowned”! It was the place of coronation! The river Malaprabha at this location flows South to North just like river Ganga does at Varanasi. This is considered very auspicious and perhaps one of the reasons selected as a place of importance by the Kings.

DSC_0975a

 

Mr Pavitra Krishna Bhat is a renowned Bharatnatyam dancer and alumni of S.K Somaiya College of Art and Commerce. Dressed in his vibrant Bharatnatyam costume he highlighted the various sculptures and narrated the secret stories hidden therein using dance as a medium of communication. His session on ‘movement’ highlighted how one art-form informs and inspires other different art forms.

 

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Bijapur also known as Vijayapura, which is not too far away from Pattdakal was our second destination. The dusty city is dotted with old monuments, tombs, mausoleums, old city walls, and the very famous Gol Gumbaz (the Circular Dome) – that displays the architectural prowess of the Adil Shahi dynasty. What fascinated us the most was the cultural confluence in art and architecture! This city of domes and minarets has architectural and engineering masterpieces that exemplify the confluence of many cultures in the Deccan – where lotuses bloom on geometric minarets, where paintings of yoginis hang alongside those of fakirs and princes, and where a poem may have words in Urdu and Sanskrit in such beautiful balance that it makes you want to dance!

We learn much about conflicts in our history books but the rich cultural heritage that underlines the essence of India can best be experienced through a minds-on – a hands-on approach to learning. Bijapur is a perfect place to discover how two cultures coming together can create both conflict and confluence.

 

Learning about traditional water harvesting systems from French Researcher

 

Our 3 days were spent in a plethora of activities from understanding traditional water harvesting systems employed during the Adil Shah period that is still active to working with local nomadic tribes to learn their intricate embroidery techniques and just marvelling at the use of ‘stucco’ as a building material that has stood the test of time.

 

Interacting with local ambadi tribe

 

Our students also spent time trying to influence other tourists to be more mindful regarding littering around the monuments! They observed uncouth behaviour among other tourists and students visiting the monuments and reflected on their own behaviour. With the help of officers from the Archeological Survey of India, students discussed the need for conservation and the myriad issues in protecting our shared heritage.

 

At the Somaiya Center for Experiential Learning we design immersive learning experiences in the areas of Heritage Conservation and Environmental Sustainability that enables participants to be curious, creative, think critically and feel empowered to participate in issues that affect the community and the world around them.

 

By

SUDHA IYER
Programmes & Communication Manager,
Somaiya Centre for Experiential Learning

Theatre in the classrooms

. Theatre, when embedded in the educational process, can lead to the holistic development of learners viz_ the social, cultural, emotional and spiritual dimensions of the learners.
We at K. J. Somaiya Comprehensive College of Education, Training & Research emphasize theatre training in our Teacher Education program through a course, ‘Drama, Art & Aesthetics in Education.

All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts.

So said Shakespeare, the great dramatist of all times.

Theatre is generally thought of as a form of literary art pursued by a few creative writers for a small target group of literature and art-lovers or as a medium of entertainment for the larger public. But it has immense scope in the education system not only as a co-curricular activity but in the classrooms during the regular teaching-learning process as a methodology of teaching. The techniques of drama & role-play can be employed to make instructional process more interesting, effective and meaningful. Theatre, when embedded in the educational process, can lead to the holistic development of learners viz_ the social, cultural, emotional and spiritual dimensions of the learners.
Social Dimension:
Drama being a collaborative Art form, engages many people at the same time, developing the values of cooperation and team spirit among participants. The participants are required to keenly observe the real people, their languages, mannerisms, behaviour patterns, etc. and understand their inner motivations so as to recreate it realistically.
Theatre also has a huge potential to become an agent of social change & reform. Dramas based on social issues such as corruption, unemployment, Poverty, Child Labor, Gender Inequality environmental management and so on can develop awareness regarding such issues and help in fighting & eradicating social evils. Through drama, learners can also be trained for democratic citizenship so as to make our largest democracy function effectively.
Cultural Dimension:
Culture is not only an amalgamation of customs, traditions, beliefs & value systems to be learnt & imitated by members of the society. It must be assimilated at inner psychic levels so that it endows a member with a sense of identity & belongingness. Careful observation & participation in the Dramatic forms such as Bhavai, Tamasha, Ramleela, Yatra & Yakshagana can provide insights into the rich cultural heritage of India and develop a sense of ‘pride’ for their own culture.
Emotional Dimension:
Drama is now also utilized as a Therapy. The therapeutic use of Drama gives very positive results in the cure of psychosomatic disorders. The student population of today is increasingly being gripped by psycho-somatic disorders such as depression, neurosis, ‘anomie’ and so on. Theatre, allows free voice & expression to the pent-up emotions, provides catharsis which results in healing the deep emotional scars and wounds. Also, by enacting multiple characters with a plethora of divergent human emotions, the participants learn to understand complex human emotions but also develop an emotionally rich personality capable of empathy.
Spiritual Dimension:

Theatre across the world has originated from religious rituals. Although religion and spirituality are not exactly the same, each religion has a component of spirituality. Traditional folk dramas with stories based on mythology beautifully connect the human & divine or the concrete, real and manifested world with the abstract, unreal and unmanifested world. Thus, theatre becomes a vehicle to transport the participants to a transcendental higher reality. It can also embark them on a journey to their inner worlds to explore the meaning & purpose of their own existence and lives.
Concluding, as a Teacher Educator, I strongly reiterate the need for incorporating theatre into the educational process. This does not imply that all teachers must be good playwrights, directors or actors. However, it does imply that teachers must be aware of the immense potential of theatre in education. It also suggests the need for the presence of theatre personnel in every educational institution and also a meaningful collaboration of institutions of academic disciplines with the institutions of Performing Arts.

We at K. J. Somaiya Comprehensive College of Education, Training & Research emphasize theatre training in our Teacher Education program through a course, ‘Drama, Art & Aesthetics in Education. The theatrical training is provided not only by theoretical knowledge but by organizing workshops on Dramatic Script Writing & Acting by professional theatre personnel, by encouraging students to participate in theatre as part of co-curricular activities and also incorporate theatre as a methodology during their internship programs in various schools.

 

By

Dr Sarla A Santwani

Principal,

K J Somaiya Comprehensive College of Education, Training and Research

SCEL – Making a connection for their future

Using forests as a resource for educating the youth provides a direct personal experience which engages and connects the head, heart and mind. Somaiya Centre for Experiential Learning’s overall vision is to create hands-on experiences that provide practical knowledge and skills to help students in their future careers and at the same time also instil in them qualities to be mindful citizens.

Forests and the trees in the fragile ecosystem of our planet are valuable from not just a human use perspective but are imperative for our very survival. If you break down the components of anything and everything that is consumed by man –from the water we drink to the mobile phones we use – you will realize that they all come from exploiting the natural resources around us.

However, most of our modern education system keeps us disconnected from this reality. Our school environments are often sterile and teaching and learning happen through textbook rote learning inside closed walls. There is growing evidence that there is a lack of engagement and connection between students and the natural environment, especially in the cities. The city students can often not tell the difference between a coconut tree and a papaya tree when shown on a farm!
Hand-on Forest Research2At the Somaiya Centre for Experiential Learning (SCEL), we try and bridge this gap. A day in the forest observing, analysing, documenting has helped our students make relevant connections with the world they live in and the ecosystems that help enable their survival.

The aim with which we curate our student programmes is to not just learn about science and research from a technical perspective but at SCEL we strongly believe in the role forest research and education can play in promoting a “pro-conservation” behaviour and facilitate an inquiry and curiosity-based learning attitude. We encourage students to listen to the drumming of a Copper Smith Barbet or observe the Scaly Breasted Munia constructing its abode.
This year, 8th-grade students from K J Somaiya English Medium School Sameerwadi spent 5 days immersed in exploring various topics related to the environment in the Malnad region of the Western Ghats in Southern India. They spent a day exploring ‘Food and Forests’ to understand how forests act as a ‘seed bank’. They ate locally grown food and worked at a women-run seed saving collective.  During the week, they also participated in scientific data collection assisting forest researchers from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.

 

Topics such as biodiversity, watershed management, food security, alternate energy sources, ecosystem services and conservation as well as conservation as an Indian tradition i.e. the concept of sacred groves were discussed and deliberated upon.

Interacting with forest officials

 

Similarly, 9th-grade students of The Somaiya School visited the Panna Tiger Reserve and the Gharial Sanctuary. They interacted with scientists from Wildlife Institute of India and the local forest officials during their visit. They spent time within the reserve to study the forest ecosystem, learnt about the prey-predator relationship in the reserve and the role of scientific research in management of the tiger reserves.

 

Interacting with WII Researcher
These curated experiences help to teach students how to be responsible, for themselves as well as for their actions and impacts. They help develop student ability to think from multiple-perspectives – scientific, civic and cultural.
Last week, many students across the globe, took to the streets spearheading the ‘Youth Climate Strike’ to protest the government’s failure to take actions against global warming. They have been championing using social media posts to spread the word and garner the world’s attention to what scientist have called the most pressing issue of the 21st Century.

Using forests as a resource for educating the youth provides a direct personal experience which engages and connects the head, heart and mind. Somaiya Centre for Experiential Learning’s overall vision is to create hands-on experiences that provide practical knowledge and skills to help students in their future careers and at the same time also instil in them qualities to be mindful citizens.

By

SUDHA IYER
Programmes & Communication Manager,
Somaiya Centre for Experiential Learning