Integral Education

We had a three-day workshop on integral education conducted from October 4th to 6th at Bharat Nivas campus, unity pavilion and amphitheatre in Matrimandir. Around 140 teachers from schools in and around Auroville and others working on education participated in this workshop. It was a residential gathering where people were engaged in different activities from 6AM to 7 PM.

We had a three-day yoga sessions at 6AM, which gave us a different and energizing experience. It helped us develop qualities like unity, responsibility, integrity, joy, happiness, balance, care, and peace.

We want to make positive changes in ourselves. This means moving from being scattered to unified, from an unhealthy to a healthy life, from a wandering mind to a focused one, from laziness to being proactive, and from restlessness to peace.

We also want to share what we’ve learned with others. This way, we can all grow together, promoting unity and peace.

The activities in our yoga sessions include music therapy for concentration, pranayama to refresh our blood, Surya Namaskar for energy, and various asanas (sitting and standing poses) for flexibility.

Yoga has been a transformative journey for us, both mentally and physically. We aim to continue these sessions and expand our circle to spread the benefits of yoga to more individuals.

Integral Education Book reading session:

In our interactive reading sessions, we had the privilege to explore “On Education” by Mother and “Three Principles of Education” by Sri Aurobindo. These sessions were much more than reading; they were discussions where we shared our thoughts, challenges, transformations, and solutions in the realm of education, especially in supporting children.

Here’s a summary of what we’ve learned and discussed:

A Holistic Perspective: Mother emphasized that education is not just about academics. It should encompass four essential aspects: the physical, mental, vital, and psychic dimensions. For education to be truly effective, these elements must align harmoniously.

Teaching vs. Supporting: We’ve realized that teaching isn’t about imposing our ideas on children. It’s about guiding and supporting them in pursuing their interests and passions, making their learning experience beautiful.

Beyond Knowledge: Education isn’t limited to imparting knowledge alone. It’s about nurturing individuals with good qualities, helping them become strong, responsible, and disciplined, and encouraging them to live with a sense of purpose.

Empowering Choices: As educators, our role is not to dictate but to empower. We should give children choices and make them aware of the consequences, allowing them to choose the path that genuinely interests them.

The Art of Connection: Connecting with children is an art we must master. By linking new knowledge to what they already know, we can make learning feel familiar rather than foreign.

Love and Care: Showing love and care is crucial in creating a comfortable and joyful learning environment. When children feel cared for, they embrace learning more beautifully.

System(String) Game in IE workshop:

This was a fun activity where we could see how I engage with my activity, with my team and with systems in general when we deal with complexity

The qualities that we saw throughout the activity were equality, care, full potential, unity, leadership, and creativity. Though we were from different backgrounds, we were all given equal importance throughout the entire workshop. We learned to care for ourselves and others around us. The activity unleashed our full potential by communicating with others, creating new patterns, and working unitedly to bring out innovative ideas.

This activity helped us to address the isms related to gender, age, and nationality. The different ideas shared by each person in the group were very effective in achieving the goal. We were able to realize the importance of independence to interdependence. It was clearly seen that each and every individual took part as a learner and leader. There was no hierarchy. It created space to move from rigid to flexible mindsets and break the silos and work as a whole group rather than smaller units alone.

The three principles of the teaching of Sri Aurobindo were clearly brought out through this activity.

Nothing can be taught – no one told us what the game was about we needed to discover it ourselves.

The mind must be consulted in its own growth – we learned to create our own patterns and we created our own self-assessment criteria for the game.

Near to far – started with what we had and extended it to new ideas

We were able to bring out what we expected through non-verbal communication. It allowed us to accept that there can be multiple solutions for any aspect.

Video Links:
Day 02

Day 03

Pictures of the gathering:
2023-10-04 to 06 Integral Education Workshop

2023-10-05 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day one

2023-10-04 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day one afternoon – photos

2023-10-05 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day two morning – photos

2023-10-05 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day two afternoon – photos

2023-10-06 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day three morning – photos

2023-10-06 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day three afternoon – photos

Pictures of the gathering:
2023-10-04 to 06 Integral Education Workshop

2023-10-05 INTEGRAL EDUCATION workshop – day one