Teachers’ Day Out

Rashmi Furtado
theteacher.in

September 3rd 2013, the scene at National Hill View Public School is electrifying. Enthusiasm to participate, passion to achieve, thirst for knowledge, aggressive competitive spirit, excitement and impatience to wait for an audience question; if you think it is an event for the students, you are mistaken. This is Qwiz’, the interschool teacher quiz hosted by National Hill View Public School, Bangalore.
 
“Many years ago, I felt the urge that at some point in my life I should be a part of an activity which tells the teachers all around, they matter”. Indeed, Qwiz is a dream come true for Mrs. Rama Ranganathan, Principal NHVPS, who believes that an opportunity is in itself a DREAM and we need to seize it and celebrate its achievement. She says with great passion, "I felt that we teachers seldom feel the need to celebrate ourselves and we can make it happen only if we move out of our little shells, familiar classrooms, known campuses and learnt subjects and be courageous enough to meet, interact and feel good that we are as good as any! And, Qwiz MADE THIS HAPPEN". Qwiz, The Inter school Teachers’ Quiz was conceptualised by her to bring together teachers from far and near on an occasion specially designed to celebrate THE TEACHER.
 
The letter Q which often symbolises a questioning authority, curiously, is also phonetically the first sound of child-like CURIOSITY. Such thirst for information and the urge to continuously learn is the innate quality of the IDEAL TEACHER. Hence Q! WIZ, as is apparent, comes from the trust and confidence with which teachers are looked up to by young learners and also from their comforting charm, inspiring charisma and inexplicable treasure of knowledge and information. The ‘I’ in WIZ is the magic wand in the hands of every teacher, who in an endeavour to help aspirant learners, recognises the inquisitive I in himself or herself and indulges in the insatiable quest for more and more information. Kindling the curiosity of all age groups and diverse enterprise is the quizmaster, Pickbrain Giri Balasubramaniam, who received this dream with as much enthusiasm.
 
Qwiz is indeed a Teachers’ Day Out. The faculty of NHVPS, contribute towards every task right to the minute details. They leave no effort in making it a special and valuable experience for all the teachers who participate. The theme for the event changes each year. Qwiz completed a decade on September 3rd 2013 and to mark this; the theme carried this year was ‘Learning is a Timeless Expression’. When asked, the Principal said, “We have been teaching for many years yet, the learning never ends”.
 
 
Every year the participants receive a ‘token of appreciation’ at the end of the event. They are handmade by the faculty of NHVPS. Despite their busy schedules, they learn an art and make every single give away themselves. Where some may look at it as an unnecessary burden, here they say, “We learn something new”. From candles to masks they have made ten different kinds of articles for all the years, which also go along the line of the themes. This year they made 500 masks, as unbelievable as it sounds; they are all handmade by the faculty. Ms. Lalitha Rajan, a faculty of NHVPS said, “I derive enormous joy from the entire event starting from the preparations to the vote of thanks. The enthusiasm and positivity that flows in the environment is encouraging and gratifying”. Among the other arrangements, the participants are greeted by a beautiful floor carpet, which is in sync with the theme and is made with coloured rice. Yes, the rice too is coloured by the faculty with the help of the senior students, who volunteer at the event. They enjoy watching the teachers behave like students. They say it is fun to watch them go back to their childhood.         
 
For Ms. Sunita, faculty Presidency School R.T. Nagar, it was the first experience. She said, “Leave us teachers by ourselves and we are more aggressive than the kids, when it comes to winning”. There was a lot of excitement among the teachers for the finals of the Qwiz. Shishu Griha Montessori and High School and National Public School, Indiranagar were among the schools who have been taking part in Qwiz since its inception. The teachers from Shishu Griha, Ms. Geetha Vishwanathan and Ms. Madhulika Chandrakumar, said their love for quizzing is what brings them back to Qwiz every year. They also felt overwhelmed by the acknowledgement and the value given to the teachers.
 
The program was inaugurated by Dr.Gururaj Karajagi, noted educationist, public speaker and ‎Chairman at Academy for Creative Teaching - Act, who in his crisp and inspiring speech brought out the joy one derives from being a teacher and in his own inimitable style underlined the need for giving. The quiz itself was an adorable event with teachers exchanging fistbumps at every right answer and biting their lips on the wrong press of a buzzer. After five rounds and some thrilling action the teachers from National Public School Indranagar, Ms. Vandana and Ms. Nirmala, emerged winners.
 
 
 
Teachers give us strength, they are our friends, our mentors, our guides, they mould the future of a nation; for the patience, perseverance and support that they give, are they being thanked enough? Qwiz is a way of expressing gratitude for everything that the teachers do. Mrs. Rama Ranganathan has truly realised her dream.
 
A teacher creates, sustains knowledge and weeds out ignorance. Teacher we salute thee.