Thanks Balamurali Krishnan for sharing you experience and beautiful images.
Lakshmi is 8 years old, she was restless and uncomfortable like any other kid of her age in coming to a farm on a very hot sunny day. It was TWA weekend farm visit cum workshop.
We were creating raised beds over a large area. for some time Lakshmi was standing alongside her mother looking at the people making Paathi. When her mother’s turn came, She was reluctant to go along with her but when her mother started digging and making a raised bead, she slowly started assisting her mother. It was interesting to see her engrossed in the activity.
In the afternoon when the entire paathi was done and she was given some seeds to be thrown in to the raised beds which she throwed it with great care. When the water was let in through the paathi, lakshmi kept throwing gently the water lifting it in her tiny hands on raised beds. Since the seeds were thrown from one end to the other end, she kept doing this till her entire raised bed was wet. Once hers was finished, she wanted to play more of this game, she moved from one raised bed to another, she kept sprinkling the water in every dry spot she could find and thus was the last person to come out of the field long after the adults were gone. From there she came running straight to the motor which was pumping water in to the field to cool her legs off. She played there with her elder brother till the sun was down.
In the times we live where children (and parents too) think the vegetables and fruits comes from the fridge or the supermarket, it is nice to see a kid easily taking to farming and enjoying it. A little bit of interest from the parents to learn farming initiates the child to play and learn with the nature. Farming introduces the child to do and learn, to work as a team and to learn about the food we consume and how it is grown.
A child can learn much better about a tree playing under it than learning about it sitting inside a classroom !