Yes, they seemed to go on saying 'eeeeeeeeeeeeeee' until I got a good shot standing ontop of a bench. These are MY kids. Hey...thats not fair is what my gang-mates would say.....and I could have a tough time...so lemme get diplomatic and settle for OUR kids. So henceforth, usage of my kids means our kids, okay guyz.
This is what happened last weekend.
I land up, look around, and the kids come to me. Soon, one of them says 'Uncle Bekkuu', and magically produces this chap from nowhere. I am not a big fan of cats & dogs. I say err...good...nice chap....lemme take some snaps....and soon the little cat is hung like a trophy...the poor chap purrs & meows to no effect.
My kids have this uncanny habit of catching such blokes from godknowswhere and trying to raise them. A few weeks back, they had shown me a baby squirrel. Well, I keep quite & let them be with these animals. Yet, I casually asked so what happend to the squirrel ?? well, they put down their heads...and said 'Uncle...adhu..sathoythooo'...('Uncle...it died'), well, they seemed to feel bad 'bout it. So I got back to snaps of the cat.
My job for the year is to interact with children from 5 & 6th and some guidance for 10th std kids. The main thrust is on making sure the basics of the younger kids are fine. With that in mind, I start my talk with the 5th kids. I have some 5kids sitting around me, and they are all excited. Ramya, Rani & Amreen from English medium and Navya & Jyothi from Kannada medium. Some basic talk, telling them I am there for them every saturday evening. And, soon I get to business. Want to check their reading skills, start with kannada. Ramya does a fundu job. One can't read better than that. Navya follows with good effort. Rani - okay. Jyothi is bad - given that shez kan med - and Amreen is okay. I make note of these in a slip, infact I give marks to them(more for my records). And, the kids keep glancing at the sheet. And, as the class goes on, we find a theme song for them - I mean a theme song is something I use with the kids I teach when they do badly, when my high-school kids used to do badly in their math, I used to sing...not exactly sing...'Ombathu, ombathu, ombathu....Tholla hallakke bithoo' and the kids would get the message. Mebbe 'Seven Eight, Nine....The Fox fell into the well' captures those lines.
Now, with these small kids, I came up, rather they came up with something fundu. As I was teaching, Rani began to sing the lastest craze 'Odimagga..oddimagga...oddimagga...bidabyada avanna!!!!!!!'..('Hit him...hit him..hit him...don't leave him!!!!!').....so thatz the line for the year.....so whenever I saw some kid going majorly wrong...I would say 'Odimagga odimagga'...point to her...and the rest of the kids gave her some nice blows!!!! The kids found this very amusing...they smiled, laughed & sang.
I was getting back to teaching such small kids after a long time almost 5+years. If you think teaching such small kids is cool. Well, well. Its fun surely, but then you must remember you are the focus of attention of several super-natural-beings. Angels or devils, it doesn't matter. They simply are the other sides of the coin.
The 5 kids were sitting around me, and its one complete graph - fully connected - each kid knows exactly what the other kid is doing, and react with no delay in the system. They believe in physical interactions. You sitting at the center - like one tall mountain surrounded by smaller peaks amuses them no extent. These bright eyed kids bring in such energy that one needs to take RedBull or something like that b4 getting into the arena. I still recall the scene in our Research room at CSA, IISc, we were teaching lots of construction worker kids, from 4 yr old to 12 yr old kinds. Our room had lots of chair and tables. And these kids, had come in, we locked the door, and these kids kept running all around, we guyz had to run and catch them. Making them sit is not so easy, it comes after days & months of exposure. So, I recall putting a small kid at the L shaped corner of a wall, he standing at that corner, I sitting in front, blocking both escape roots with my legs, he generally laughing....and I trying to teach something, phew...
But, know what, you do this once.....and you would simply love it, interacting, getting their attention, teaching things in a calm cool interesting way is quite challenging. Basic things, Alphabets, numbers, addition, subtraction, reading etc bring in challenges.