Early last week, kids came home with a nice invitation card from the St Patrick's Academy. That was cool, color printed invitation card for the parents to attend the 2nd Annual Athletic Sports meet at St Patricks Academy.
We knew kids have been practicing at school for past several days for this event. But we still did not have any clue what is in store for us.
On the day, we all woke up early and went to the school with the kids who are more excited than us. The preparations at school were very impressive. Hundreds of chairs were arranged under open tents around the huge play ground behind the school. The school buildings and surroundings looked very beautiful.
By 8:45, the school ground was filled with students. The view was marvelous with hundreds of children in 4 different colored dresses to represent 4 "Houses" in the school.
The event started 9:15am when the chief guest arrived. The chief guest was the MLA. A lot of political leaders were present, probably an attempt by the school to keep them happy!
I took a lot of pictures since this was the first experience for me. I have never seen such colorful events in the schools in USA. During the half day event, my self and my wife said each other at least 3 times - we have been missing all these in USA.
The event lasted till about 1pm. We were keenly watching every single program including march past, group aerobics, butterfly dance by LKG/UKG students, a lot of athletic competitions and more. I probably need to have better writing skills to describe the amazing series of events organized by St Patrick's Academy on the annual sports meet.
All the credits go to the Principal Br. Britto, the teachers who spent several days to prepare the kids for the event, many brothers from the Patrician house associated with the school and other volunteers. The entire event was very well organized and kids performed superb.
How the Sports event is different from US schools?
In USA, the schools have a lot of intellectual programs. Sports is not given the same level of importance given in India, especially in smaller classes. Also, in USA, most of the extra curricular activities for children are optional. You choose what you want. If you don't like Sports, go for something else. One of the significant differences I see here is, you have no choices. Whether you like it or not, you must participate in every single program, which include dance, drawing, painting, yoga, aerobics, sports, speech and a lot more. An American would consider it as offensive and would sue the school for making so many programs mandatory for kids. Well, I am an Indian and I like less "choices" for children but more "options". I am glad I chose St Patricks Academy at Bangalore for my children after we returned from USA.
Sports meet at St Patricks Academy, Bangalore - an unforgettable event for us
We were very impressed at the end of the day, probably because we have never seen this before and also because of the changes this event made in the attitude for our kids towards the school.
This is our first big event at the school after we returned from USA to India. What made us happier was, kids really enjoyed the day. John, our eldest son, who we were very afraid of having adjustment problems in the school after we returned from USA to India, was well bonded with the school today. He did a great performance in various sports competitions and won 4 medals, which made him feel on top of the world.
Last several months, we have been advising John - 'India is a highly competitive place and it is perfectly okay even if he does not perform as good as he was doing in USA'. He was pretty upset during the initial days because he was not recognized in the class and was not considered as a 'good boy' by teachers. We kept on saying the day will come when he will be recognized as a good child.
We made a lot of efforts to make the school comfortable for kids, which I will explain in another post. Even though they did not have any major adjustment problems we were afraid of, if we ask which school they like most, they always chose their previous school in USA.
The whole picture changed today after the sports event. All of a sudden he started saying "My school" instead of "that school", "this school" etc. He became a very proud student of the school, explaining everything in the school.
After reaching home, I asked John: Which school you like most now? This time, he did not wait for me to list the options, but the answer came instantly: "St Patrick's Academy"! Thanks to the great sports event.
Sports meet at St Patrick's Academy photos
I have shared a lot of photos in few photo sharing places:
Picasa web albums
St Patrick's parents Faceook page