An event to test teachers' creativity, oratory skills

WINNING SMILES: The Chennai winners of the Awards of Excellence in Education given by the Rustom Irani Foundation. (From left) Vidya Vargese of Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, first runner-up, Swapna Nair of DAV Boys School, winner, and Shyla K umar of AMM Matriculation School, second runner-up. — Photo: S.R. Raghunathan  

Staff Reporter

CHENNAI: Teachers from city schools matched wits at `Unsung heroes...no longer,' an event organised by the Rustom Irani Foundation at the Vidya Mandir School on Thursday.

Various competitions were organised to test the teachers' creativity, oratory skills and rapport with students.

The winner, Swapna Nair of DAV Boys School, and runner-up, Vidya Vargese of Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, will participate in a final round in Mumbai, scheduled for September 2.

Suzanne Percy from the management of Rustomjee International School said, ``Unsung Heroes is an open and transparent mode of awarding excellence in teaching. The most important aspect of the event is the networking and sharing of resources it enables.''

Twenty nine teachers, selected from the 53 who had applied in response to the Foundation's personal intimation of select city schools, participated in slogan writing, painting interpretation, essay writing, debate, test of logic and a unique game testing the teachers' ability to communicate with their students.

A panel of judges with experience in the media, English language teaching and testing and psychology selected the winners.

``Events like these help teachers learn a lot. They realise the need to hone their communication skills and, at the next level, see how they stand vis-�-vis their counterparts from across the country,'' said Bhavani Raghunandan, principal of Vidya Mandir. Shobha Raman from the same school has already won the second prize at the national event in Mumbai last year.

The participants in Mumbai will be competing for a first prize of Rs. 1 lakh, second prize of Rs. 50,000 and a third prize of Rs. 25,000 with the winners of similar events in Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Pune and Mumbai.

Students from various schools at Vidya Mandir on Thursday will take back memories of their teachers performing various tasks more commonly found in the inter-school `culturals.'

As Swapna Nair puts it, ``This event awakened the child in us.''